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A Facsimile of My 2011 Minnesota State Fair Journal

November 28, 2011

See the post for full details.

CompletedEdition2365

Above: the completed editon (30 plus a prototype) of my 2011 Minnesota State Fair Journal Fascimile. Read about it below.

For the recent MCBA Visual Journal Collective's Box of Journal Bits Exchange I made a short facsimile of my 2011 Minnesota State Fair Journal (18 pages, not the 90 or so in the full journal). You can see the completed edition above, as well as the errata slips which were attached to the inside back cover before it left the studio. (I discovered a couple errors after the printing and first sewing were completed!)

InnerStitchbothsides2358Left: A closer view of the internal stitching, from both the back of the book (on the left) and the front of the book (on the right).

I created the book in Quark Xpress and had it output at FedExOffice (I don't currently have a toner printer that will do the size sheet I wanted to do). I had to trim the sheets, but I was able to do that quickly at MCBA on their guillotine cutter. (If you are a member at MCBA you can rent their equipment at a very modest rate. I only spent $9 on this aspect of the project.)

 

ProtoInnerStitch2356Right: A closer view of the prototype (left, which had a darker green cover than the final edition of 30 books) and the stack of books not yet covered (right). You can also see the hand tipped in archival print of Spin Art that I used on the title page, and which is visible through the cover window (as seen on the prototype). I used unwaxed linen thread for the inner stitches (see the white spool) and for the outer decorative stitch I used a 4-ply dark green waxed Irish linen thread. You can also see the templates for sewing the cover stitching. They are sitting right at the head of the books on the table. I use a bulldog clip at the head and at the tail of the book when sewing either stitching, to keep the template and the pages all in place.

STFairFac2011Windows2354Left: This image just gives a closer view of the print I inserted on the cover, and the window feature, both on the prototype (right, without a print) and the first book of the edition (left, with a print). Both are shown before the final cover stitching.

The book has an inner sewing which isn't visible in the final product (see the second image of this post for a view of it), but is crucial for holding things together and making a tidy book. I was running out of time and thought about using two staples, but they would have shown through the cover. Instead I just hunkered down and stitched in every spare moment. I found that drilling all the holes with an electric drill saved me a lot of time, over hand punching.

This was a great exchange project and if you would like to see what other people made for the exchange or read more about it (and see two short videos) please see my post from Friday, The MCBA Visual Journal Collective's Box of Journal Bits Exchange.

We have more exchange projects that are in the works for 2012 so watch for them. You don't always have to be on site to participate.

Our next group project does require on-site attendance. It is of course our annual portrait party on January 16, 2012 (the third Monday of the month) from 7 to 9 p.m. You show up, sketch a partner, she/he sketches you, I paste it all up into pages, we photocopy the pages, fold, collate, punch, and sew a photocopier edition, with everyone going home with a book. ($5 covers the paper and toner costs.) So if you want a fun and crazy time, and a book to show for it afterwards I suggest you show up!

I realized, when preparing this post that I've yet to post a video flip through of my complete 2011 Minnesota State Fair Journal. I'll try to get that video shot in the next couple weeks.

  1. Reply

    I, along with others I’m sure, have been patiently waiting to see your sketches from your County Fair. Either I have missed them, or you have not posted ANY. I am glad to read that you are going to video your book soon.

  2. Reply

    Donna, I didn’t go to any county fairs this year. I went to the Minnesota STATE Fair—it’s a whole different animal, on a scale most people can’t even imagine. The Fairgrounds take up many, many city blocks. Look up the Minnesota State Fairgrounds on google earth or something to see images from the sky!

    I posted some images early on, but never had time to scan others, there was just too much going on between the end of the State Fair and now. Too much to write coherently about it, scan the stuff, etc. And of course for the first time in two years I was WELL at that time of the year and I was spending time daily cycling—which has been a pure joy because we have also had the warmest fall with great days for cycling.

    So I’ve been focusing on my daily health rather than the Fair, and it’s only posting about this artist’s book that I made that reminded me, hey, I’ve got to do that some day.

    So I will.

    Thanks for being patient and for wanting to see it. It was a good year at the Fair.

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