A ‘Yes’ Person Makin’ Books

Are you a ‘Yes’ person?  I can be at times, which is why you didn’t see me much last week. This past Friday I took a short, but very much, little break in my day and read this. For me, the money doesn’t even matter when it comes to saying yes to things. I may need it or I may not, but I still end up saying ‘yes’ most of the time to something that I just don’t have the time for. I believe it’s mostly because I don’t want to disappoint someone when I say ‘no’.

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When it all collides I end up dropping anything I have planned for myself and/or my personal life. All for what?! I end up worrying more than concentrating and more than enjoying the opportunity to create something new. I get a bit stressed and find myself skipping meals. And it’s not uncommon being alerted to the fact that even though I’m no longer a teenager does not mean I won’t get zits from certain stresses!

So it’s time for a little change, a sit down for some goal setting and to assure myself that saying no, especially to pro-bono service, is okay. How about you? What do you do when you find yourself saying ‘yes’ to too many things, whether service or work related? Do you have any tips or suggestions that have been helpful?

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The past year or two I’ve studied more and more about book binding. Above is a photograph of part of my Mother’s Day gift I made for my mother. I love the pattern on this paper. I’m seeing patterns like this everywhere! I’m seriously considering designing a new invitation with a similar pattern. I believe it was first seen as an exterior design pattern on cathedrals, churches and abbeys. If I recall correctly from my architectural design class at university, it’s called quatrefoil. Even though I didn’t study graphic design at BYU, at least I can say I’m using something artistic I was taught there in my current job.

My favorite way of book binding so far has got to be coptic binding, which is the style of this book. I always thought it was a Japanese technique, but when I took the class I was surprised to learn  it was actually developed by the Egyptians. Amazing that a technique used as early as the 2nd century is still being used today! Talk about an undying art! I’m so happy to have learned this technique and hope to learn more.

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At the end of each extended calligraphy class I’ve taken the students would have a project they worked on for the class term and we would all put a book together with shrunk down images of our art. But my interest into book arts didn’t hit me until I took my first book binding course at my local Paper Source. After one class I was hooked. I can’t recall the instructors name for the life of me, but I’ve taken additional classes from her and I love her teaching style. Her style is to work with you, not just tell you what to do step by step. She actually makes a book along with you and waits until you’re ready to continue. Seems pretty basic, but you’d be surprised how rare it is that some instructors follow this way of teaching.

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Here is a picture of the inside front cover of the book. The calligraphy on the right was written with my folded pen nib. I think the calligraphy sucks. I’m hoping in the future I’ll see progress from the sorry site of this.98004003Later this month I’m taking a Basic Bookbinding course. I’m sure that will be fun, just like all the others I’ve taken from Paper Source. I’ll be sure to update you on the results.

Later this week I’ll be away on a very important trip. To all those at the National Stationery Show right now, I’m so envious, but very excited to hear and see all how it went. They say the first couple days are the busiest.

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Filed under book binding/book arts, calligraphy, invitations

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