Introduction to Marbling: May

with Heather RJ Fletcher
Saturday, May 4; 10am–4pm CT

Experience the magic of marbling firsthand with this single-day, in-person workshop! Learn the basic process of paper marbling with acrylics, including recipes for the various components of the process. Make four basic patterns (stones, moire/waved, git-gel, and nonpareil), explore seasonal color palettes, and take home your own marbled papers ready to be used in bookbinding and other arts. Participants will leave the workshop with the confidence to work independently at MCBA’s Marbling Labs. Continue reading “Introduction to Marbling: May”

Letterpress 1: Printing Basics (May)

with Laura Brown
Saturday, May 4; 10am–4pm CT

This in-person letterpress workshop offers an introduction to MCBA’s print studio—including key equipment, tools, and terminology—in addition to an opportunity to experience the satisfaction of printing a message through the hands-on process of letterpress printing. Get to know MCBA’s wood type collection and learn beginning typesetting with wood type. Learn the basics of working with a flatbed cylinder press, including operation, safety, and care while building skills using the equipment with support from a teaching artist. In pairs, choose a text (three to five words) and print your own small edition of posters on a Vandercook press.  Continue reading “Letterpress 1: Printing Basics (May)”

Mechanical Spine Binding

with María Carolina Ceballos
Tuesdays: May 7 & 14; 4:30–6:30pm CT

In this virtual workshop, learn how to create a simple, non-adhesive binding with a mechanical spine that collapses when the book is opened on a flat surface. This elegant binding lays flat when fully open, which makes it ideal for personalized sketchbooks, journals, and artists’ books. First, learn an uncomplicated French stitch to sew the sections and covers of the book together. Then, construct the spine and attach it to the sewn book. Basic binding experience is required, including measuring, cutting, and folding paper, as well as a familiarity with tools such as a utility knife, bone folder, sewing needle, and awl. Continue reading “Mechanical Spine Binding”

Poems & Paintings: Masking Fluid Watercolor Portraits

with grace (ge) gilbert
Tuesday, May 7; 7–9pm CT

Writing is, in a way, painting. Painting, in turn, is a visual language. In this beginner-friendly, virtual workshop, choose a portrait that feels significant to you—such as a family photograph or portrait of a loved one. Learn how to paint watercolor portraits using masking fluid, a latex-based pigment that can be removed to create negative space in a painting. Then, we’ll respond to these images with writing prompts. This generative workshop is great for those who are interested in telling personal stories across art mediums. Come for a fun evening of poetry and painting and leave with ideas for how to use both text and image in your art practice. Basic watercolor experience might come in handy, but instruction will give an overview of basic concepts for those who are unfamiliar.  Continue reading “Poems & Paintings: Masking Fluid Watercolor Portraits”

Box Building for Beginners

with Erin Maurelli
Wednesdays: May 8, 15, 22, 29; 7–9pm CT

This virtual workshop is perfect for anyone new to book arts who would like to learn something a little different. Building boxes with high-density board, often called “book board,” is a time-honored tradition within book arts. Hand-built boxes serve many functions, from holding tools to preserving fragile books. Participants will learn the basics of box building while creating two unique boxes with lids. Continue reading “Box Building for Beginners”

Sculptural Book Lab

with India Johnson
Thursdays: May 9, 16, 23; 6–9pm CT

Explore the book as sculpture in this in-person workshop. Consider the book’s objectness in terms of volume, weight, and space/location. Get inspired by images of sculptural books and book installations by a variety of artists in each session. Then, learn how to make a sculptural book or a book structure that lends itself well to installation. For example, it may be constructed of many folded units that can be arranged sequentially on a wall. Experiment with ideas based on what you learned in addition to guided prompts that push you to think about books in three dimensions.

At the end of the workshop, participants will be guided through the process of installation, presentation (this includes photographing work and drafting “wall text” to label your work for potential exhibitions), and lighting a sculptural bookwork in MCBA’s bindery and reference library before taking home finished work. Friendly group feedback may be shared, if time allows. Continue reading “Sculptural Book Lab”

Sign Press: Print Your Voice

with Molly Poganski
Thursday, May 9; 6–9pm CT

In this in-person workshop, learn about the history and power of the printing press as a tool for sharing information while printing your own message on a sign press! Learn the basics of setting and locking up type on the sign press. Join others in choosing ink colors and type to hand set a word or short phrase with guidance from the instructor. Each participant will print at least one copy of their message to take home—along with inspiration to keep printing!

MCBA’s sign press has a unique typesetting system that allows type to be locked up on press more quickly than on other machines. Each piece of type is slotted and held securely in place with specialized locking clips. Type can also be locked up using magnets These “quick and dirty” features make this press great for getting a message on paper speedily and without a lot of finicky typesetting.  Continue reading “Sign Press: Print Your Voice”

Paper Beater Training: May 11

Saturday, May 11; 11am-12pm CT
Papermaking Experience Required

If you aren’t already trained to use our paper beaters, here is your opportunity! Through hands-on training you will learn the capabilities of each piece of MCBA’s paper beaters, and how to use them correctly and safely. Completion of this training will allow you to rent this equipment and use it independently. Studio Labs are not eligible for Certificate credit.
Continue reading “Paper Beater Training: May 11”

Cutting Equipment Orientation: May 14

Tuesday, May 14; 6:30-7:30pm CT

If you aren’t already trained to use our cutting equipment, here is your opportunity! Through hands-on training you will learn the capabilities of each piece of MCBA’s bindery cutting equipment, and how to use them correctly and safely. Completion of this training will allow you to rent this equipment and use it independently. This orientation was previously titled Cutting Equipment Training. Studio Labs are not eligible for Certificate credit.

Continue reading “Cutting Equipment Orientation: May 14”

Block Printing on Paper and Fabric

with Elaine Chu
Tuesday, May 14; 7–9pm CT

In this virtual workshop, design and carve your own custom block prints using a clever transfer technique. Then, learn how to print your block on both paper and fabric. The materials kit includes a set of cards, a drawstring bag, and a zip pouch, all of which can be printed with your unique design. Come away from the workshop with the knowledge and skills to continue printing independently with blocks on paper and fabric! Continue reading “Block Printing on Paper and Fabric”

Toroidal (Circle) Accordion

with Stephanie Wolff
Wednesday, May 15; 5–8pm CT

A circle? A donut? A torus! Whatever you think of when you see this accordion, the shape has lots of fun possibilities for content. When open, it’s donut-shaped; when folded up, it’s a wedge—like a piece of pie without the tip. In this virtual workshop, learn how to draw out the form, cut and fold, and make a simple wrapper for your own toroidal accordion! Our focus will be on making a model that participants can use as a reference for making more accordions after the workshop. A drawing compass is required, but no advanced math is involved. Continue reading “Toroidal (Circle) Accordion”

Book Repair: When Paper Fails

with Rachel Payne
Saturday, May 18; 9am–4pm CT

In this in-person workshop, learn foundational techniques and methods to care for aged and damaged paper. Begin with an overview of basic and historical paper-treatment methods, then find inspiration in books and papers participants bring to the workshop to learn specific techniques for treating paper that is dirty, bent, curled, folded, dog-eared, taped, or torn. These methods and techniques will give you the skills you need to care for your personal collection and to begin your journey into book repair. Instruction and demonstrations will take place throughout the day with time for one-to-one guidance on individual repair projects. Bring in aged and damaged paper and books that you would like to evaluate and treat.  Continue reading “Book Repair: When Paper Fails”

European Papermaking

with Bridget O’Malley
Saturday, May 18; 10am–4pm and Sunday, May 19; 1–4pm CT

Learn the tools, terminology, and procedures of European-style papermaking in this in-person studio workshop. Participants will be guided through fiber preparation, the process of using moulds and deckles to form sheets, and techniques for pressing and drying. Our focus will be on consistent sheet formation and safe, effective beater use, empowering participants with a solid grounding in materials and techniques for future independent papermaking in MCBA’s Papermaking Labs Continue reading “European Papermaking”