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[BKARTS] Calligraphy AND Letterpress

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Dear Susan-
I appreciated your letter describing what has moved your spirit forward in 
books, and identify with your love of the line. 

It is possible to find satisfaction in the experience of pen to paper AND 
letterpress. Polymer plates can be made from the calligraphed line and then 
reproduced in the delicious depth of letterpress printing, which can hold all 
of its best dimensional and sensual qualities. 

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<< Date:    Mon, 13 May 2002 10:52:40 -0400
From:    "Susan K. Gaylord" <skgaylord@MAKINGBOOKS.COM>
Subject: Re: Trends and Influences

 Dear Friends

    I am just getting around to responding to the conversation on Trends in 
book arts,
content, etc. I don't know if I would call it a trend but I am meeting people 
who are coming into the book arts from other areas of art, in particular 
photography. They are attracted to the book for its capacity to involve 
sequence, to add text, and to bring separate images together into a cohesive 
whole. I think one approaches new material differently when one comes from 
another field.
     My first entry into the world of visual art was calligraphy. When I 
letterform and the pen, a whole new world opened to me. I was primarily 
self-taught the first few years and later took workshops. I was interested in 
learning everything. I worked my way through all the hands, read all the 
background history that I could, studied books of manuscripts as well as 
collections of contemporary work. I was like a sponge. As time went on, I 
started to become more interested in the gesture and movement of the 
calligraphic stroke than in the form of the letters and I began to write my 
own texts. I came to feel I wanted more than what was happening on the flat 
page and turned to the book.
     When I came to the book arts, I was not the same person who discovered 
calligraphy. I had content in mind and a sense of what I wanted to say, and I 
was looking for a new vehicle for that content. I was much more selective in 
what I wanted to learn. I was drawn immediately to the simpler forms. I had 
no desire to make a hardbound multi-signature bookand I still don't today. 
The simpler structures allow me to think about the content in a more 
three-dimensional way.
     One of the things that I loved about calligraphy is its immediacy. You 
put pen to paper
and you make your mark. While it takes lots of practice (I was a driven soul 
with pen and
paper for years) to make the marks you want, the results are immediate. I 
find that working with the simpler book forms also offers a certain 
immediacy. I think it’s also why I was never interested in trying letterpress 
but have been intrigued by the possibilities first of copier and now of 
digital printing.
     As always, I appreciate these conversations. 
in good spirit
Susan Kapuscinski Gaylord
Newburyport, MA>>

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