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Book Arts Improv Book #4: Selfish / Not Selfish

I just finished my last book for this year’s Book Arts Improv.

Just to remind you, here are the themes I was working with this week:

  • Wishing that there were a pill I could use to treat this in other people: Selfishness
  • This should really become a national holiday: National Read A Book Day
  • An unfortunate allergy: Food

Here’s the finished product – a book entitled Selfish / Not Selfish:

Handmade artist book by Elissa Campbell – “Selfish / Not Selfish”

Handmade artist book by Elissa Campbell – “Selfish / Not Selfish”

Front page spread

Handmade artist book by Elissa Campbell – “Selfish / Not Selfish”

Back page spread

The covers are covered in a machine-made paper with an embossed wavy pattern and a metallic finish. I printed the text pages using Book Antiqua on both Speckletone True White cover stock and Mohawk Superfine text.

The form of the book is known as a back-to-back accordion book, which I learned from Alisa Golden’s book, Making Handmade Books: 100+ Bindings, Structures & Forms. The structure is constructed with 2 accordion-folded strips that are sewn together in the valley folds. I used bakery twine for the sewing.

Handmade artist book by Elissa Campbell – “Selfish / Not Selfish”

I was inspired by the concept of selfishness, but didn’t know how I was using it until late in the creative process. I painted some papers with watercolors in an attempt to get things moving.

Hand-painted paper

I cut the paper into squares, which I then used to mount the text in the accordions.

Hand-painted paper

Collaged papers

The text consists of selfish and not selfish actions – the selfish actions are marked with “selfish” in red, rubber-stamped letters.

Here’s the complete text of the book:

Selfish / Not Selfish

Read a book to your kids.
Build a book fort and don’t let your kids play in it. [SELFISH]

Share your food with your co-worker when he forgets his lunch at home.
Put your name on all of the food in the refrigerator, even if it’s not yours. [SELFISH]

Take your friends out for coffee.
Pour the coffee down the drain while your friends are watching. [SELFISH]

Play with your dog.
Play solitaire with your dog’s deck of cards. [SELFISH]

Invite your friends to join you at a concert.
Play your music really loud in the middle of a museum. [SELFISH]

Donate money to a local charity.
Roll around in a pile of money on your bed. [SELFISH]

I’ll be posting the grand prize winner on Monday. That lucky duck will win a set of books that includes each of the four books created during the Improv.

Good luck to everyone!

So what do you think? I'd love to know!

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