It’s a ways away yet, but I’ll be teaching my first class at North House Folk School in beautiful Grand Marais, Minnesota, right on the shore of Lake Superior, next year in May. It’s an introductory class in making clamshell boxes, whether for a portfolio of photographs, drawings, etchings, books, or anything you may want to keep safe.
You’ll learn how to accurately measure, cut materials, and build your own clamshell case to take home. All materials will be supplied and pre-cut to size prior to the start of class but we’ll discuss recommended equipment, choice of book cloths, papers, and the different adhesives and their uses for those who wish to continue constructing cases on their own time. No previous experience is necessary and all tools will be provided.
I’ll be there with Beth, who will be teaching a 3-day hand-sewn leather tool bag class. Visit Fieldwork Goods to see the beautiful leather bags, wallets and other items she makes, all hand-sewn (no machines) the traditional way, with two needles and linen thread.
Memorial Day Weekend
This class falls on the Memorial Day Weekend, which means the area hotels and B&Bs will be busy, so if you’re thinking of signing up for the class, plan ahead and book early!
I have a new and improved shop that’s now online! Here, you can, or will be able to, purchase aquatint screens for the polymergravure process as well as small, special print editions.
What I’m really excited about is the small range of ready-made portfolio boxes that I’m going to start offering. These I’ll make in standard print sizes but without any stamping or customisation. For this reason they’ll be priced lower than my custom-made boxes but they will be one-offs, so once a box is sold, that’s it, it’s gone. So if you see one you like, don’t hesitate! As time goes on I’ll keep adding to the number available.
The project will involve an small edition of clamshell cases that each hold 58 gelatin-silver prints hand-printed by Peter, which are stunningly beautiful. I’m debossing 4-ply Museum board and dry-mounting the prints into the resulting plate mark. There will also be a title page, statement and colophon. Once I’ve mounted the prints and printed the text sheets I’ll have a better idea of the exact depth required, then I can start making the cases. That number of mounted prints will result in a nice, substantial case that’s about 4.5” deep. I’m going to try and post more images of the production as we progress over the next few weeks!
Just a small section of 300 sheets of Museum board.
This is clamshell case I recently made with artist Lisa Nebenzahl. Besides needing a case to present both her prints and 3D constructions, Lisa wanted to learn the craft of making boxes and cases, so we worked on the project together. The case measures 13.5 x 19.5 x 4” with a removable set of dividers and a panel to separate the prints. It’s finished in Cadet Blue Japanese bookcloth with matte gold foil stamping.
Each of the cases holds a framed Daguerrotype in the base and a small portfolio of platinum-palladium prints on Japanese Kozo paper (both made by Andy Bale) on top. The images are of the Ese’ Eja Nation, an indigenous people living in the Amazonian region of Peru.
Andrew Bale journeyed to Peru’s remote jungles to capture images for a National Geographic-funded project to map the Ese’Eja’s culture.
The project, staffed by videographers, photographers, anthropologists and botanists, aims to enable Ese’Eja society to reclaim ancestral lands from the Peruvian government. That achievement would allow a people that derives so much of its economy and spirituality from the forest to sustain their livelihood into the future.
Bale’s portraits of daily life, handmade objects and individuals will be featured in an upcoming book sponsored by National Geographic’s Genographic Legacy Fund. Sales of the book support initiatives for better access to health care, education and legal grappling to secure the Ese’Eja’s ancestral lands.