In answer to the often voiced question “How long did it take to make that?”
Reflections on creating an Artist Book such as Autumn.
After arriving at the initial design and subject matter:
Layout, measure, cut, fold and assemble the basic accordion-fold interior structure of the book using Stonehenge paper- 4 hours.
Design, collage and draw on the structure- 10 hours. Draw and cut woodblocks- one long day
Layout and print 6 panels- one full day
Cut and adhere them to the pop-out structure with a delicate and very fine tolerance, making sure the images do not overlap the pop-out windows even by a hair, or the pages will not close properly- 5 hours.
Reinforce the spines of 6 folds with archival linen tape, including the small “hinges” above and below each panel- 1 1/2 hours.
Cut covers from binder board, file edges smooth and round outside corners with emery paper- 2 hours.
Cut, fit and adhere fabric to cover boards with double face adhesive and glue, (including sewing fabric scraps to achieve a large enough piece for the second cover)- 1 day
Cut inside cover papers with gently rounded corners, using rice paper laminated to plain white archival paper for sufficient body to accept double-face adhesive. 3 hours.
Now the book block, ready to install, is positioned between the covers and arranged so that all margins are equal. The first end tab is Lineco-glued to a cover and weighted until firm; the second cover goes on and all is clamped in the nipping press until set and dry. Then the end papers can be adhered in place. With fine tuning adjustments, 3 hours.
A rice paper-covered portfolio in a standard design can be constructed in two days.
This production, then, took approximately 9 days start to finish, not including the selection and purchase of materials. Recently a similar work sold in a crafts gallery for $450.00, which, after commission, resulted in $375.00 to the artist or approximately $ 5.20 per hour plus materials. A classic labor of love.