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VT Book Arts Guild “MailB.A.G.” April 2013

2013 April 4

Next Meeting: Wednesday, April 10, 2013, 6:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.


There will be no change in location – we meet at the Unitarian Universalist Society Church located at 152 Pearl Street in Burlington, VT. We will be in the Sophia Fahs Community Room, a large room located in the basement.

Click here for more information on directions/parking.

Program: Edible Books and Postcard-a-Day with Marcia Vogler

Edible book by Sue SchlackFor our April meeting, Marcia Vogler is serving up a double dose of creative fun. For the first part of the meeting, we’ll celebrate the International Edible Books Festival right here in Vermont. Simply combine your creative and culinary talents and bring a piece of edible art related to books.

Your creation can pun a title (The Brothers Karamatzoh, Grape Expectations); refer to a quote, scene, character or author (To brie or not to brie, Curd Vonnegut); look like a book or book form, or be a functional book made out of edible materials (Japanese sushi nori, Pop Tarts, etc.).

Of course, you are welcome to attend the meeting whether you bring edible book art to share or come to enjoy the creations, but here are some ideas to get your creative (and gastric) juices flowing:

  • S’more and Peace
  • Alice in Wonderbread
  • The Bun Also Rises
  • The Rosetta Scone
  • Lord of the Pies
  • Twelve Angry Gingerbread Men

We will visit each entry and try to guess the title before the artist reveals it! You may want to bring a camera and a notepad to record the humorous creations with their titles! Then, we’ll chow down on the truly edible creations. For more inspiration, visit the International Edible Books Festival website or Google “edible books”.

Book of postcards by Marcia VoglerDuring the second part of the meeting, we’ll make someone else’s day special (and keep the USPS in business!) by sending a ‘Postcard a Day.’ Marcia will share her inspiration for a daily practice of collage and written word, and how it has helped her to stay in touch with both herself and an ailing friend. A simple collage can be made quickly in an abstract manner, or as a representational piece.

Using painted papers, magazine tears, used calendar pages, or simply paper scraps, we will put together mail art to be shared with others. Marcia has sent an original postcard almost everyday since August 2011, to friends receiving chemotherapy and/ or radiation treatments. She continues because it has become an important part of her day. Examples of her work can be found here and here.

Please bring:

  • Glue Stick
  • X-Acto Knife
  • Scissors
  • Cutting mat
  • Collage materials
  • Paints, inks, and rubber stamps and anything else you would like to use to embellish your card(s)

Typography work by Donna Stepien studentReflections on March’s Meeting

For many book artists, text is a difficult aspect to handle. In our March meeting, Donna Stepien presented a unique and fascinating view of the power of text and letters.

Beginning with an overview of applying mindfulness as a tool to find meaning in our work, Donna led us through some history of typography and principles of graphic design. She then shared the extraordinary work of students in her college-level typography class. Each student designed and constructed a book using only the words of a chosen poem to create visual and emotional impact.

We were all impressed with the level of sophistication in the work, and came away with ideas for incorporating text in a more mindful manner in our own work.

You can view images from the meeting on the B.A.G. blog.

B.A.G. News

Studio Place Arts logo*** B.A.G.’s 2013 spring exhibit, There’s No Place Like Home, will be hosted by Studio Place Arts in Barre, VT. The show will take place at the same time as an exhibit on children’s literature in the Main Floor Gallery.

Members are encouraged to submit work for this exciting show. This is a great opportunity to get your work out there, whether you are a first time exhibitor or a seasoned artist. The theme is very accessible, and brings up many references that are unique to each person.

Beyond the reference to the Wizard of Oz, the idea of ‘home’ can suggest family, rooms, objects, memories, and dreams, just to mention a few. Start now with some brainstorming and word association techniques presented by Stephanie Wolff at the September meeting, and generate content for your book.

The exhibit will be in SPA’s Third Floor Gallery from June 4 – July 6, 2013. The deadline for submissions is May 1, 2013. You can download the entry form here. Forms will also be available at the April meeting.

Book Arts News

*** A Book Arts Bazaar, presented by the Kate Cheney Chappell ’83 Center for Book Arts in conjunction with Maine Reads and the Maine Festival of the Book, will take place on April 7th, 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. at the University of Southern Maine. The Bazaar will feature book artists, papermakers, bookbinders, printmakers, educators, writers, and all things related to the book.

The Wishcamper Center is located at 34 Bedford Street on the University of Southern Maine’s Portland Campus. For more information, please contact Rebecca Goodale via Email or phone: (207) 228-8014.

Book Arts Studio Handbook*** In conjunction with the release of the Book Arts Studio Handbook by Stacie Dolin and Amy Lapidow, The New England Chapter of the Guild of Book Workers is arranging an online exhibit of bindings on or inspired by the book. The exhibit will be posted on the New England chapter website.

The entry deadline is May 1, 2013. Participants will have to submit a jpeg of their binding along with description information. If you are interested in participating in the exhibit or need more information, please Email

*** The New England Chapter of the Guild of Book Workers has released their calendar of events for the first half of 2013. Other events may be in the works, but they wanted to distribute information so you can save the dates for any programs you are interested in.

Events will be posted on the NEGBW blog and further information will be included there. If you’d like, you can subscribe to the blog and receive notifications of new posts by Email. On the right side of the blog’s home page, fill out your Email address under “Email Subscription” and click on the “Sign Me Up!” button.

Book Arts Classes

drop spine box*** Martha Kearsley will be offering a Drop-spine Box (aka Clamshell Box) workshop on Saturday, April 20, 2013 from 9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. at the University of Southern Maine.

The drop-spine box is a remarkably useful structure and can be easily adapted from its original purpose of housing books to create elegant and expressive portfolios. Owing to time constraints, students will build a drop-spine box from pre-measured and cut materials, but will also be provided with the skills, models and information to design and create their own boxes.

For more information or to register, please call (207) 780-5900. The workshop will be held at the Wishcamper Center Multi-Purpose Room  at 34 Bedford Street on the University of Southern Maine’s Portland Campus.

Handmade tools by Jim Croft*** The New England Chapter of the Guild of Book Workers presents Making Bone Tools and Objects with Jim Croft on Saturday, April 20, 2013 from 10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. at the North Bennet Street School.

Participants will learn how to shape and polish elk and deer bone using various hand tools. Bone may be shaped into tools, small sculptures or both. Bone carving will also be demonstrated. Raw bone will be available in many shapes and sizes, everything from usable scraps to large pieces. Jim will teach sharpening if anyone wants. Bring tools you would like to show and light work gloves.

A $20.00 materials fee will cover the use of bone-working tools such as rasps, files, sandpaper and drill bits in addition to either one large bone or several smaller pieces. Additional bones may be purchased on an individual basis if desired by participants.

For more information, please download the registration form or contact Todd Pattison via Email:

*** The New England Chapter of the Guild of Book Workers is also hosting two workshops in June with Paul Johnson in Maine (one workshop will be repeated):

  • Spirit House – A Three Dimensional Pop-Up Model: In this workshop, you will make a 3D pop-up spirit house from paper. There are no folds – the whole structure (comprising over thirty separate parts) is made from hinges and dovetails joints and will fold down flat.
  • Book as Architecture: In this workshop, you will make a pop-up gazebo in which there are no folds and therefore no paper ‘fatigue’. All sections are fastened together using a range of paper hinges, locks, and dovetail joints. Sections can be modified and redesigned as the model develops – you simply take out one section and replace it with another.

For more information, please download the registration form(s) below or contact Todd Pattison via Email:

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