Drum Leaf Binding and its Precedents – Spring 2023

Several drum-leaf bound books are placed next to each other. One of the examples is more of an accordion fold while the other three are full hardcovers.
Scott McCarney looks at you from the other side of his workbench
Scott McCarney headshot

Event Info

This three-week virtual workshop takes place on Zoom on Thursdays, April 27 to May 11 from 6pm–8pm:

  • Thursday, April 27, 6-8pm
  • Thursday, May 4, 6-8pm
  • Thursday, May 11, 6-8pm

Please Note: Registration for this workshop closes on Thursday, April 20 at 11:59pm.

About the Workshop:

In this three-session online workshop with CBA Instructor Scott McCarney, participants aged 13+ will learn to make three types of lay-flat books ideal for displaying photographs and prints.

The three techniques– a Japanese Album, a Japanese Butterfly book, and a Drum-Leaf binding– have similarly easy and ingenious modes of assembly. All three books join single folded folios in distinct ways using a minimum of glue, limiting the amount of moisture to speed the binding process considerably. Participants will case their Drum-Leaf books into easily assembled quarter-cloth covers with throw-back spines. Since each page spread is a single folded folio, participants can print their images across the gutter with no interruption, making these techniques very popular with printmakers and photographers. Once completed, these books lie flat when opened, making them easy and comfortable to view.

Session one: Participants will make a Japanese album and a Japanese butterfly book. Using the drumming technique, participants will also make covers for these books.

Session two: Participants will drum a stack of folded folios to create the book block for the Drum-Leaf binding.

Session three: Participants will make the cover and case-in the Drum Leaf book block.

Required Materials:


  • Text weight / copy paper
  • Book cloth
  • Book board
  • Decorative paper
  • Medium weight paper
  • Bone folder
  • UHU glue stick
  • PVA adhesive
  • Small glue brush
  • Metal ruler
  • Scissors

Optional Materials:

  • Medium weight paper of a contrasting color for making end papers.
  • Text weight paper of a contrasting color for end papers

More detailed materials lists, including measurements, will be provided in the confirmation email sent upon registration. 

About Scott McCarney

Scott McCarney is an artist, designer, and educator based in Rochester, New York. His primary art practice has been in book form since 1980 and spans many media, from offset and digital printing to sculptural and site-specific installation. His bookworks can be found in the collections of the Museum of Modern Art, New York; Victoria & Albert Museum, London; and Yale University Art Gallery, among others. His work is shown internationally (Sao Paulo, Brazil; Melbourne, Australia; Baku, Azerbaijan) as well as closer to home (Hallwalls, Buffalo NY; Everson Museum, Syracuse NY; Memorial Art Gallery, Rochester NY). His teaching and lecturing itinerary is varied and eclectic, carrying the banner of artist’s books to Australia, New Zealand, Korea, Mexico, and South America. He recently concluded 16 years of teaching in the College of Art and Design at Rochester Institute of Technology.  

All images courtesy of the instructor.

In order to best serve our community near and far, many of our online classes are pay-what-you-can. The amount you choose to pay goes directly toward our instructors and toward creating scholarship opportunities for the future. Virtual workshops at Center for Book Arts will be recorded and the recording will be provided for all registered participants after the class.
All workshops at CBA are subject to our cancellation policies.

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