The Ideal Sketchbook

This event is currently full. However, you can click "Register Now" and be added to a waiting list. You will be notified if a spot become available.

June 29th, 2024 9:30 AM

  • Instructor: Michael Burke
  • Workshop Type: Binding
  • Workshop Status: Wait-list
  • Sessions: 2
  • In-person or Online?: In-person

Workshop Fee (includes materials fee): $350

Scholarship available! Click here to apply

Masks are no longer required for most workshops, though anyone is welcome to wear one if they wish.

The Ideal Sketchbook is modeled on the ones used by Wordsworth and Ruskin as they wandered the Lake District to draw and write. Strong, elegant and pleasing to use, it was the 'daybook' of choice for all the great Romantic poets and artists.

The Sketchbook is an honest structure made from good quality materials, opens beautifully flat and is very durable. Most importantly for the beginning bookbinder, it can be made at home with no equipment, just a few simple tools, and requires no pressing.

Working from full sized sheets, we will fold and slit the paper to give a beautiful, feathery deckled edge. We’ll sew the book with linen thread on hand-made tapes, and sew in a cloth hinge for strength. The spine is rounded, for easy opening, but not backed, which eliminates the need of a laying press. The case is made from greyboard covered in a strong natural canvas.

If time allows, students will tool their finished binding with creative lines and circles, using traditional finishing tools and both carbon and colourful metallic foils. All this makes for a handsome, rugged book that can withstand all the hard knocks associated with going 'out into the field'.

Beginning bookbinders are welcome, though absolute novices may find it difficult to keep up. It will be best for students to have at least some basic bookmaking experience, even if it's just a few online tutorials at home.

>> Prerequisite: None, but please read above <<

Materials to Bring: None. All tools and materials will be provided. Students are also welcome to bring any of their own favorite bookbinding tools.

Date & Time: Saturday & Sunday, June 29 & 30, 2024 :: 9:30am-5:30pm

Location: 375 Rhode Island St, San Francisco, CA 94103

NOTE: Please read over the SFCB Registration Policies before signing up for a class. Registration will close approximately three days prior to the start date of the workshop to allow the instructor time to prep materials for class. We recommend you not wait to register, as workshops that don't meet our minimum enrollment will be canceled, sometimes as much as a week in advance.

About the Instructor | Michael Burke (he/him)

Michael Burke studied bookbinding with Dominic Riley and paper conservation with Karen Zukor. Michael lives in England, where he teaches bookbinding as well at events across the UK. He is a past chair of the North West and North Wales region of SoB. He has taught for diverse book arts groups in the USA, including Los Angeles, Seattle and Salt Lake City. In recent years he has taught at the Paper and Book Intensive, travelled to São Paulo to teach for the Brazilian group ABER, and in 2011 presented Byzantine binding at the Seminar of the Guild of Bookworkers. Michael researches the structures of ancient and medieval bindings and received his Masters degree in the History of the Book from the University of London in 2011.

Michael and Dominic are co-founders of Book Camp, an immersive residential bookbinding experience which aims to teach new generations of binders.

Past Student Reviews:

"I loved the book structure you make, I will def be making it again. I liked how it was setup so you could do it all at home with no special equipment."

“I liked everything about this workshop. I thought the teacher was excellent, the workspace was great, the final product turned out really well too.”

“I liked learning about this bookbinding structure that can be done at home without requiring heavy equipment like a job backer and nipping press.”

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375 Rhode Island St
San Francisco, CA 94103-5133
United States