Posts Categorized: Book Arts

Papermaking: Pulp, Sculpt and Print

Papermaking can be used as a catalyst for bookmaking, printmaking and drawing, as well as an art form all in its own. Beginning with the scrap papers that so constantly accumulate in our print studio, student will turn these left overs into precious pulp. In addition to using recycled materials, students will make unique handmade paper sheets using natural fibers like abaca.

After forming basic paper with a mould and deckle, students will explore texture, paper casting, and layering paper to create sculptural pieces or installations.

With the printmaker in mind, the class will also address how to incorporate imagery into and onto handmade paper. “Inclusions” like fragments of prints, organic materials, or thread can be integrated into the paper. Plus, students will learn ways to add photographic imagery to their papers through alcohol transfers and cyanotype processes.

Students will graduate from the class with an understanding of papermaking terminology and history. They will be able to make and dye pulp, create large and small flat sheets, and craft paper-based artwork that incorporates collage, photography, pulp painting, and sculptural elements.

Papermaking at Spudnik Press is a low-tech non-toxic process that requires limited access to special facilities, and can be incorporated into classroom settings. This is a wet process, so dress down for this class.

The Artist Book: Design & Construction

The Artist Book is fundamentally an interactive sculpture. While artist books are often based on traditional of sewing and gluing techniques, they typically depart from the everyday paperback by incorporating non-linear narratives, tactile and playful elements, illustrations, unexpected juxtapositions, and a close attention to material details.


During the first weeks of class, students will learn or refresh core bookbinding skills including sewing, gluing, folding, cutting, and measuring. Students are encouraged to bring short quotes, poems, scrap prints, found images and other elements to help incorporate content into these practice projects as well as the final independent project.


Class discussion and friendly critiques will help peers select and plan a unique book project that integrates form and function with their personal aesthetics. Working individually and as a group, students will brainstorm ideas, sketch, and develop a project plan. The lessons in the second half of the class will be driven by the artistic visions of the students and may introduce paste papers, raised and recessed surfaces, hinges, multi-signature bindings, box construction and more.


Those with advanced experience will have time to tackle more ambitious techniques. Those newer to the medium can develop a project that best aligns with where their abilities. Students are encouraged to incorporate printmaking processes they are already familiar with into their artist books, however additional printmaking processes will not be taught in class.