Closing up the retail side of 23 Sandy Gallery, selling the building, moving and all that madness took entirely too long. Running the gallery for 10 very successful and satisfying years took a bit of a toll on this maker’s soul. I longed for studio time every day during those zillion-hour-a-week years of showing the world the glory of book art, organizing exhibitions and working with so many very talented artists. Happily, as of mid-October, life settled down to the point where I could get back into the studio and re-establish my creative practice.
The first step: Making art a priority and getting back into the habit of regular studio time. A query on Facebook yielded many inspiring suggestions for jumpstarting my creative time. (Thank you, friends!) And then, a plan was hatched to jump right back into making and off I went.
The first idea: Thank You Books. A series of books celebrating the first 10 years of 23 Sandy. A goal of a book a month, all free, open-edition books, perhaps one-sheet wonders, perhaps not. But, all aimed at thanking the oh so many artists, librarians, visitors and supporters of the gallery.
The first book: GBW Tacoma 2017. Book #1 in this series of thank you books was made as a keepsake for the Guild of Bookworkers Standards Conference held in late October in Tacoma, Washington. I have been a member of the Guild of Bookworkers for nearly 20 years and it was great fun to hand out the books to my many guild friends and say thank you for the inspiration, education and support. The photos in the book are vintage “Roadside Americana” in Tacoma.
This book is a four-sided, one-sheet carousel book adapted from Ed Hutchins’ Book Dynamics. (Order your copy and get to know this superstar book artist and all-around great guy at artistbooks.com.) Ed was an early teacher and friend in my book arts world and his work continues to inspire after all these years. Thank you, Ed.
You can download a free PDF of the Tacoma book here or by clicking on the thumbnail at left. Print on 11 x 17 inch paper then follow the step-by-stop instructions to cut and fold into the miniature carousel book shown above. I printed mine at Staples on 67# card stock for about a buck and they look great. You could also reduce to fit on whatever size paper fits in your own printer for an even smaller miniature book.
Sabbaticals are meant to be a defined period and my plan is a year of making. But, have no fear, during this creative interlude, I’m still making time for a bit of private artist book dealer duty. I just hope that I don’t squander this opportunity to create!