Visual Poetry & Artist’s Books

with Ellen Sheffield
Wednesdays: January 11, 18, 25; 7–9pm CT

What is visual poetry (VISPO)? Visual poetry incorporates multiple forms of experimental poetry and literature. It has been described as the natural fusion of poetry and visual art with a history in concrete poetry. This makes it an ideal genre for the hybrid nature of the artist’s book, which happily accommodates the convergence of visual and literary impulses. Of the multiple ways artists use language or write text for artists’ books, the poetic approach is among the most evocative.

This is an intermediate level virtual workshop for artists and writers interested in taking a deep dive into more experimental poetic uses of text in artists’ books. We’ll look at examples of VISPO approaches such as lettering, handwriting, text objects, typography, and collage. Through prompts, exercises, and homework assignments, participants will explore and experiment with creating visual poetry and make a soft cover sampler book as a guide for future book projects. Continue reading “Visual Poetry & Artist’s Books”

Box Building for Beginners

with Erin Maurelli
Thursdays: January 12, 19, 26; 6–9pm CT

This in-person 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”

European Papermaking

with Anna Haglin
Thursdays: January 12, 19, 26; 6–9pm 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 molds 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”

Introduction to Marbling: January

with Michelle Blodgett
Saturday, January 14; 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. Continue reading “Introduction to Marbling: January”

Non-Adhesive “Double X” Binding

with Laurel Jedamus
Saturday, January 14; 1–4pm CT

Add a new non-adhesive binding to your repertoire of sewn bindings in this single-session in-person workshop. This attractive and unusual softcover binding was developed by Keith Smith and originally named dos equis for the double “X” pattern the stitching makes on the spine. As it is made from two types of paper and thread, this binding is an accessible structure to make again and again with tools you may already have at home. Continue reading “Non-Adhesive “Double X” Binding”

Print and Stitch: Make a Journal

with Ben Etten and Skyler Hawkins
Saturdays: January 14, 21; 1–4pm CT

This in-person workshop is designed to offer a brief introduction to two book arts processes—screen printing and bookbinding—while having a lot of fun creating a hand-bound notebook featuring your artwork on the cover! First, learn basic tools, techniques, and terminology used in screen printing. Create an image, transfer it to a screen, and print onto a few sheets of paper, which will be the covers of your notebook. The second session will focus on building skills in basic bookbinding using tools such as a bone folder, awl, and utility knife. Learn the pamphlet stitch binding and come away with at least one finished notebook, plus the skills needed to continue making notebooks using previously printed, handmade, or marbled papers. Bring your sketches and ideas to the workshop. Each participant will come away with 1–3 notebooks (approximately 7 x 5 inches in size) and a few extra prints. Continue reading “Print and Stitch: Make a Journal”

Box Building: Drawers & Dividers

with Erin Maurelli
Tuesdays: January 17, 24, 31, February 7; 6:30–9pm CT

Create custom boxes to hold your treasures, tools, and collections. In this virtual workshop, learn to create drawers that slide and storage dividers within the box. Build a box that has a lid with a hinge, a divided tray, and a drawer. Basic box building experience is required, including experience covering boards and checking that boards and compartments are square. Continue reading “Box Building: Drawers & Dividers”

Paper Beater Training: January 17

Tuesday, January 17; 6:30-7:30pm 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.
Continue reading “Paper Beater Training: January 17”

Letterpress 1: Printing Basics (January)

with Savannah Bustillo
Saturday, January 21; 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, design and print your own small edition of posters on a Vandercook press. Continue reading “Letterpress 1: Printing Basics (January)”

Screen Print: Photo Emulsion

with Ben Etten and Michelle Lee Lagerroos
Saturday, January 21; 10am–4pm CT

Get familiar with MCBA’s newly revamped screen printing studio and practice the photo emulsion process, from positive creation and screen coating to exposure and reclaiming. Each participant will complete an edition of multi-layered screen prints and come away from the workshop with the confidence to work independently at MCBA’s Screen Print Labs. Some screen printing experience may be helpful, but is not necessary. Continue reading “Screen Print: Photo Emulsion”

Letterpress Topics: Printing Hebrew Type

with Robyn Awend
Thursday, January 26; 6–9pm CT

Get to know MCBA’s collection of Hebrew type and practice typesetting with the Hebrew alphabet. This demonstration-focused in-person workshop will show participants strategies for setting and choosing text based on character counts, type size, and other logistics involved in the process of letterpress printing with Hebrew type. Share budding project ideas for supportive feedback and resource-sharing. Return to MCBA for Letterpress Labs to set type and print your own project with Hebrew type. Continue reading “Letterpress Topics: Printing Hebrew Type”

Handmade Paper in Color: Mineral Earth and Lake Pigments

with Hannah O’Hare Bennett
Sat–Sun, January 28 & 29; 10am–4pm CT

Add color to handmade paper with natural pigments! On day one of this in-person workshop, begin with a review or introduction to basic European sheet formation, followed by instruction on how to extract lake pigments from natural dye vats using soda ash and alum. On the second day, spend the morning learning how to integrate mineral earth pigments and the lake pigments into pulp using retention aid. Then, pulling sheets of western-style papers in rich, natural hues ranging from oranges and yellows to light and dark reds and grays. If time allows, use citric acid and iron solutions to shift the colors of the papers. Participants will come away with a portfolio of colorful paper and a basic understanding of the papermaking process. Please wear clothing that can get dirty and shoes that can get wet (i.e. rubber boots, garden clogs, etc.).
Continue reading “Handmade Paper in Color: Mineral Earth and Lake Pigments”

Single Sheet Books: Infinite Creativity

with Jill Weese
Saturday, January 28; 1–4pm CT

Learn how to create endless types of simple books from a single sheet of paper with only a little folding and cutting. Explore different perspectives to create several unique meander and pop-out books, ranging from simple, traditional books to three-dimensional, shaped books. Great for making zines, these structures are easy to learn and fun to make! This hands-on workshop will provide plenty of time and materials to experiment with these structures and you’ll come away with models to reference for future bookmaking. Continue reading “Single Sheet Books: Infinite Creativity”

Mystery Box Artist’s Book

with Yuka Petz
Tuesday, January 31; 5–7:30pm CT

It’s time to break out of your material comfort zone and think with your hands! Participants will be mailed a Mini-But-Mighty Mystery Box of Materials, which must not be opened until the virtual workshop. After a brief discussion of what defines a book and “bookness,” participants will open their boxes and make an artist’s book following three simple rules:

    1. You must complete your artist’s book in 60 minutes.
    2. You must use all materials in the box.
    3. You may only use the materials in the box.

After our intuitive creation time is up, we will show and share our finished artist’s books. This workshop is designed for all levels of book artists, from beginners to advanced practitioners. Please note: Materials in the workshop image are representative. Actual mystery box contents will differ. Continue reading “Mystery Box Artist’s Book”