Bookwork 101 Part Two: Artist as Writer

Event Info

This three-day, virtual workshop takes place on Zoom on Tuesdays, October 18—November 1, from 6:00 pm—8:oo pm.

  • Tuesday, October 18, 6:00pm—8:00pm
  • Tuesday, October 25, 6:00pm—8:00pm
  • Tuesday, November 1, 6:00pm—8:00pm

Please Note: Registration for this workshop closes on October 10, at 11:59pm.

Sign up for multiple Bookwork 101 workshops and you will automatically receive a 10% discount.

About the Workshop:

This virtual class at Center for Book Arts is taught by instructor Ellen Sheffield.

This workshop is part two of a four- part series of progressive workshops for eager novices – makers who are new to the book art genre and who are looking for an opening pathway into the conceptual thinking and artistic skills that go into the planning and making of an artist’s book. Sign up for multiple Bookwork 101 workshops and you will automatically receive a 10% discount.

Does anyone actually “read” artists’ books? How do you capture the attention of a reader to turn the pages of your book and engage with the words and not just look at the pictures? In this workshop participants will be encouraged to find the unique “voice” for their book concept through first examining how text is used in artists’ books: as image; as lyrical expression; and as narrative; among other ways.

Language exercises incorporating Dada and Surrealism approaches and the concept of text itineraries will next be explored with hands-on short assignments. Ways to get text onto book pages will be demonstrated and participants will complete homework assignments to develop the text approach appropriate for their artist book project. Successfully communicating one’s concept through textual choices is the goal of this workshop.

Required Materials:

Required Materials:

  • 3” x 5” notecards (a dozen)
  • 8.5” x 11” text weight paper (6 to 8 pieces) or sketchbook paper
  • 11” x 17” or larger, text weight paper (6 pieces)
  • pen or pencil
  • colored pencils
  • markers
  • Scissors
  • Xacto knife
  • glue stick
  • masking tape
  • Magazines, newspapers, assorted ephemera for collage

Optional Materials 

  • carbon paper (1 sheet)
  • tracing paper (1 sheet)
  • alphabet rubber stamps, stencils, ink pad

All other materials will be provided by Center for Book Arts at no additional cost.

About Ellen Sheffield

Ellen Sheffield is a visual artist, poet and teacher based in Gambier, Ohio and Point Richmond, California.

Her works on paper and artist’s books play with image and text intersections to create unexpected readings. Collaborations with poets, experiments with found text and working with visual scores are some of the ways she engages with themes of place, memory and language perception in her studio practice, Unit IV Arts.

Beinecke Library at Yale University, Ella Strong Denison Library at Scripps College, Fleet Library at Rhode Island School of Design and many others have collected her artist’s books. She is co-curator with Tia Blassingame of “Troubling: Artists’ Books that enlighten and disrupt old ways of being and seeing” on exhibit at Bainbridge Island Museum of Art in spring of 2022.

All images courtesy of the instructor.

Class size is limited to ensure an optimal student-to-teacher ratio. Register now before the remaining spots fill up! If you cannot comfortably pay tuition but are interested in taking this class, please consider filling out our financial assistance application here. We will notify you if you are selected to receive a scholarship before the start date of the class.

Registration is closed. Return to all Classes.

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