L   A   U   R   A

i s   i t   a   b o o k ?

Part One

[small photograph of 'Laura May 11th, 1995,' a book by Emily-Jane Dawson]

Laura May 11th, 1995 was made as a birthday present for my dear friend and sister-out-of-law, Laura Grant. My initial idea was content-driven: I wanted to make a book for Laura about other Lauras, in celebration of my Laura and her name. I had thought of this plan about a year before I made the book. The idea to use the structure in this way came when I was looking through my files and found a drawing I had made of Laura, which you see reproduced in the final version of the book. I knew that I wanted the book to be very visually focused (after all, there wasn't much text to work with), and it seemed the perfect opportunity to use the 'border book' format I had long admired in Keith Smith's book, Non-adhesive bookbinding. I wanted to combine the image with the list of Lauras, so that the image would be primary but the list items would still have a clear presence.

The book itself is very small when closed, only about 3" x 3". The fore-edge ties are really a necessary feature in this particular book, since the fold-out sections don't always stay folded up when the book is closed! When the book is opened, the first full page-spread reveals the title, and the second is the begining of the fold-out sections. The back sides of the fold-out pages (which are viewed during the folding-out process) each have the name and a brief description of a notable Laura on them. When the entire left-half of the fold-out sections has been revealed, a center section of pages comes into view. These center pages have the middle part of Laura's face drawn on them in different colors (the rest of the book is drawn in black on white). When the entire rainbow of faces has been paged through, more folded pages are revealed, which unfold to make the right half of the fold-out section. When the right half has been unfolded the center pages (with Laura's face on them) can be leafed through as the reader wishes.

The book was made with Fabriano paper, and the illustrations and text are in pigment pen and water-soluble colored pencil.

[photograph of 'Laura May 11, 1995,' a book by Emily-Jane Dawson]

A word of warning about this exhibit: the pictures are a little large, and although there are only two on each page, you may experience some annoying delays in loading time. We've done our best to reduce the byte size of the pictures without sacrificing visual clarity, but due to our inexperience we're pretty sure we've only made an approximation of the perfect compromise. Our apologies!

See more pictures:

Part Two
Part Three
Part Four
Part Five

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