The whirlwind is over and I am back home after a busy weekend at the Bristol Artists Book Event. I am always amazed at how fast the end arrives and this:
abruptly transforms into this:
Now that I am back home and getting organized, I’ve finally put some things on Etsy that have been lurking around for a long time. Big Jump Friends, use the special code YesPlease to get 10% off anything in the shop before May 15th.
Come on over and peruse a selection of Figure Study Sets:
Figure Study Proofs:
And population prints from last year’s Kickstarter Campaign:
Sitting behind a table for days can be exhausting. I am always stuck with the age old question: How do I keep myself busy without looking obnoxious? No phones, that is obvious. No checking out and reading a book. But if I just stare at people as they come by, I risk scaring them away with the intensity of my gaze, or coming off as creepy and alarming. Not everyone wants to talk. In fact, a lot of people really don’t want to talk. (Perhaps this is even more true for the UK than the US? This is a new theory after doing Codex and BABE within a couple of months.) Sometimes, though, talking can be the difference between making a sale or not. So I always need a task that allows me to check in when necessary, but makes it easy to back off and let people look privately. Usually I bring books to sew, but I ran out of those on the first day. So I resorted to this:
sewing absolute nonsense into a piece of scrap paper. By the end of Sunday, I had gotten here:
If any of you were there and saw me working diligently on a mysterious project, rest assured it was this piece of garbage that I was so carefully attending to. I could have made it a bit further, but by the end of the afternoon I started stabbing my fingers by accident and decided to call it quits. I may take this same paper to The West Dean Design and Craft Fair, my next big sale, and see how far I can get given three more days. (I am giving a short talk while I am there, by the way. Do you want to come? Saturday, June 20th from 3-4pm. More information on that event to come.)
Despite the photo at the top of this post, which suggests that I had company behind the table, I was on my own for most of the weekend and so didn’t get the chance to do very much hunting around. I get away for a few minutes every now and then, and saw an amazing variety of books. Like this hilarious use of œ wood type ligatures from Semple Press:
And–proof that this blog is not just a long letter to myself–a direct result of my Ikea foam post from a couple of years ago at the Paperwallah table:
(Thanks for telling me, Paperwallah! You made my day.)
I managed to limit my spending and only made one big purchase, a copy of Book Art Object 2 from David Jury’s table. On the way home to Hove I spent some time deep in the book, finding new books and old friends until it got too dark to read.
Thanks for a great weekend, BABE! Now, back to unpacking boxes and preparing to teach some letterpress this week. Over and out, blog friends!
I think your stitched piece is lovely (not garbage).
I was visiting the ACC show in St. Paul this weekend and conscious about when I made eye contact with artists. Sometimes people treat the artist like they’re not even there (and make the most horrendous comments). I’m sure you know this.
I figure if I’ve stopped to look closely at something, it’s nice to at least say “hello,” or even “nice work.”
Thanks, Mary! I shouldn’t have been so harsh, I do enjoy making all kinds of things, even if I don’t see them as having a future in a book. It’s hard to know how to behave at a fair, I know that when I am looking I mostly like to be left to browse, but like you I do try to make eye contact and say hello if I am there for a short while. And it is true, sometimes people can make such weird comments to their friends while you are sitting right there! It’s like normal rules of politeness are suspended because you are behind a table. Oh well, it all makes for fun conversations with fellow makers later.
Love your Blog. You are a great writer!
Ha! Thanks Dad. xoxo
I missed this event – actually passed through Bristol that weekend en route to Wells/Glastonbury and didn’t even know it was on! Hope I get to see it in person one year.
What a shame! BABE is a once every two years event, so hopefully I’ll see you there in 2017! (that sounds like a hundred years from now!)