Thursday 25 May 2017

Iskandar Jalil. Lazy Susan and teserea.

 I have started to use my Lazy Susan. A table top turn table used for dinner parties and the like. I enjoy the fact that I am able to turn the book this way and that, to enjoy the 3d, sculptural aspect to the work. I can see the flow of the design and how the various elements work or not as the case may be.
 Jalil worked in a number of directions. yes, there are vessels (pots) and there are the sculptural works but he also worked with plaques. I like the thought of them being pieces of a collage. I have made a number of small plaques or teserea. Each is about 2cm x 2cm... In a way I have created  lip around each board, the boards have become thin or low walled vessels themselves. Now I can begin to work on the content of the boards/vessels

Monday 22 May 2017

Iskandar Jalil. Pots talk among themselves in silent conversations. .... Mark Cockram.... so do books.

 Mark Cockram... and so do books, but books have stories to tell and so much more....
When you want a book to look like a ceramic pot...... Third image.. From left to right.... Book, Pot (ceramic vessel, not the other stuff) and tin can.

Friday 19 May 2017


The 5 day module has been designed for the artist, graphic designer art printer etc, wishing to engage and work with the book format. Book styles will include single section books, Stub-non adhesive binding, Drum Leaf text blocks and case binding. Depending on the individual student it is expected that the student will make a minimum of 3 books. If a complete beginner then we start with basic formats such as Zig-Zag or concertina books moving on to more advanced structures.
Bricolage bookbinding and book arts
 Contemporary, Creative and Traditional  
Make your own Book cloth
Structures suitable for heavy papers 
The fee of £600 includes all materials, use of 
hand and studio tools and equipment.

The module can be delivered in a 5 day block,
individual days including weekends to suit the
individual student.

For further information please contact MARK COCKRAM

Monday 15 May 2017

Iskandar Jalil. Pots talk among themselves in silent conversations. Leather paring and respect.

A mixed day in the studio. First there was a gawper (gauper) who shouted through the window "What do you do?"... Their face being less than a foot away from a large sign.... Then followed a reflective 30 minutes. I have worked on the title for the new book and cased the text block in. In the afternoon .. leather paring. It is often said that one of the skills that has to be mastered in book binding is working with leather. I would tend to agree, though I am aware of those friends I have who for them leather is a no go area... I digress. I like leather work, for me it is a blend of understanding and respecting the material, use of the tools and how they are used.. That is was a living animal, that the animal was not just reared for its skin, but for it's milk, hair, meat etc... For example, the tanning of leather is an ancient skill. One also has to respect the tanners for with out them I would have to prepare my own skins for use in my work. And before anyone asks... yes, I have prepared my own skins ..... The knives I use have also been made by artisans. It is a reminder that without the skills of others I would not be able to do what I do. So, this afternoon has been taken up with leather paring. I have wanted to create an under texture from the leather paring.. How and why in a later post perhaps.....

Wednesday 10 May 2017

Iskandar Jalil. Pots talk among themselves in silent conversations. Under the skin.

 Though not the binding for Pots Talk, it is an aspect of the work on the bench in the studio.  I really enjoy being able to create my own books, to make the complete work. More about this in later posts.

 I realise that much of the book binders work is never seen as it is hidden, in many cases, under the skin as it were. The Boards have been attached along with the spine piece. A good few hours of sanding have passed to achieve a smooth and seamless finish. Recessed areas to the front and back of the boards have been created by the removal of the sanded surface. I realise this may sound odd.... why waste all that time and energy on to remove most of the sanded area..... Well, for me it is not about what was removed, it is more to do with what remains. By ensuring that the surface was pefect before removal, I can be sure that what is left is as perfect as I can make.

The Swirls of leather (above) will be placed in to the recessed areas of the boards as part of the overall look and feel of the work. I am wanting the textures to play as important part in the is work as the colour and materials.