I live in England, not far from Bristol. My title is “Paradise Lost”. It leapt out at me from the list.
The first house, according to a book of that title, was built in a forest glade. The forest provided shelter, food and fuel. When we make a garden, we are perhaps unconsciously trying to recreate that long-lost Eden, the forest glade in which our distant ancestors lived. I’ve worked for many years as a gardener, and I still feel driven by the search for a lost paradise.
This is my first experience of participating in a BookArtObject edition and I’m becoming so immersed in it that it’s getting into my dreams. I have taken part in one other group project, the Al-Mutanabbi Street Coalition, for which I made a letterpress broadside and a book in an edition of 26.
Text is important to me: reading it, finding it, writing it and composing it in a chase to print on my Adana 8x5” tabletop press. I’m still very much a beginner at this printing lark and am constantly frustrated by not having enough letters – or being “out of sorts”.
For seven – or maybe eight - years I’ve been a member of Bron Bradshaw’s weekly Book Class at The Dove Studios near Glastonbury. Now the class has metamorphosed into ABCD: Artists’ Book Club at the Dove, and we meet once a month to share information, ideas, skills and wonderful food.
For the last three years I’ve had the immense privilege of joining The Travelling Bookbinder (Rachel Hazell) for a weekend workshop at Bressay Lighthouse. This is in Shetland, a 36-hour journey from my home and a place I love for its austere beauty and for the good friends I’ve made there.
I’m very much looking forward to this adventure!