Big Jump Press

Geneva Book Marathon

Someone give me a bottle of water, a medal, and one of those magical tin foil blankets. And maybe some prize money. This month of travel is over, ending with a non-stop book marathon in Geneva, New York. There is only one way to break down the last week into a post, and that is with a chronological blow by blow.

Sunday, 25 November. I arrive in Geneva at midnight. Then I go to sleep. (ok, so this wasn’t the most high power day.)

landing gear down

Monday, 26 November. Time to spread the word about the link stitch binding. Below, Cadance  sews her book with a touch of intrigue, as is appropriate for this structure. And so begins a three part bookbinding extravaganza at The Cracker Factory in Geneva, NY.

And where once there was nothing, now there are books.

Tuesday, 27 November. Break out the leather! Leather scraps are one of the benefits of binding books one flight up from Miles and May Furniture Works. These scraps may have been rejected for use upholstering the most beautiful chair in the world, but they are just right for the long and link stitch. As you will see below.

And where once there was nothing, now there are books.

Wednesday, 28 November. Finger lakes nostalgia tour. I spend the day driving in a borrowed car from Geneva to Skaneateles to Aurora back to Skaneateles back to Geneva trying to catch up with old friends from my three years as the Victor Hammer Fellow at Wells College. Hello Michael and Winnie Bixler! Hello Nancy Gil! Hello Katie Baldwin!

Thursday, 29 November. Time to give a talk! My new book is currently on display alongside mockups and process materials at Hobart and William Smith Colleges. As a part of this show, I give a talk all about the design and production of the last two books.  Good friends come from Geneva, Aurora, Syracuse, and even Washington DC! (Thank you, friends!!!) Thanks to Peter Verheyen, that talk is now available online. Would you like to watch?

ahhhhhhh, ze deluxe editionThere is some kind of fun logic at work here:  this book is all about valueless things that we cherish, and here is a show that places the valueless detritus of production on pedestals.



Friday, 30 November. A double header. Part One: a drumleaf workshop for HWS architecture students taking a portfolio design class.

IMG_6174Pause as we take photos and put them on facebook:

IMG_6177Friday Part II: Yet another bookmaking workshop back at the Cracker Factory. This time it’s a letterpress-bookbinding one-two punch as we set type and print covers for pamphlets that we sew in class.

IMG_6181But wait, did you feel that? The slight change in the air? The far away sound of voices joined in song? What’s that over there? That Vandercook SP-20 humming and glowing across the room? Something feels different about it. . . something exciting and special. . .

IMG_6185Below, the lovely Katie Baldwin gives me a hand on the presses and Jonathan gets ready to print from an old advertising cut. The photo has a dreamlike quality because my press is just nearby.

IMG_6190And where once there was nothing, now there are books.


Saturday, 1 December. Fly to Philadelphia, just in time to watch the SEC Championship. (Roll Tide.)

landing gear up

Seriously, blog friends, I am totally exhausted.Thanks Kirin, Jeffrey, Amy and Brandon for bringing me back to Geneva. Thanks Max for bringing me to Milwaukee, thanks Carol for sharing the table at Pyramid Atlantic. Thanks David, Michael, Chris, Nancy, Katie, Jessie and Peter for coming to the lecture.  I fly back to England on Monday night. Then it is time to get back to work binding, printing, and working on new projects. But first I am going to lie on my stomach and eat snacks for 48 hours. More soon.

4 comments on “Geneva Book Marathon

  1. Sarah
    December 3, 2012

    It was a pleasure being your student! I’ve already purchased all of my supplies to get me started on my new bookbinding hobby! Thanks so much!

    • Big Jump Press
      December 3, 2012

      Thank YOU Sarah! I am thrilled that you are all geared up to keep binding!

  2. KT Hall
    December 3, 2012

    Cracker factory!

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