Archives for category: Chicago

Today it is gray and yucky outside so, this post is not about today but the string of beautiful days we had last week.

I’ve totally decided that the brief bit of fall we have here is my favorite time in Chicago. When it’s cool and sunny the city is really marvelous. Saturday afternoon I went over to my friend Boo’s house and sat on the porch playing with her darling dog and chatting and soaking in the crisp sweater wearing weather.

So, today is a day of life appreciating photos of the season and good friends and likable dogs!

Also, be sure to be checking Marginalia here. My post this week is about my experience teaching undergraduate papermaking so far.

Happy Monday y’all!


Hey dear folks out there!

So, I know I have more posting to do about Renegade but in the meantime I wanted to let you know that I am now an official blogger for Graduate Admissions at Columbia College. Once a week, I’ll be posting enthusiastically and passionately about all things Book and Paper.

The blog just went live today and you can check it out here.

Hopefully when I fall behind here you can still check out Marginalia and have an idea about what’s going on in Hannah King’s world.

I hope you all have a wonderful weekend!

So, I’m so excited that this year I was able to attend Renegade Craft Fair.┬áIt was such a fun time! Remember last year when I was so excited and then ended up having to work?! I was so disappointed. Thank goodness for Monday through Friday classes and jobs this year!

I think the best way to distribute the massive amount of photos I took is to do a general post today followed by posts about some of the specific vendors that blew my mind later in the week.

You can visit the Craft Fair site here and the permanent Renegade Handmade shop here.

The vendors in this blog post are Yeehaw Industries, Orange Beautiful, and Girls Rock Chicago,

And darn it, I can’t find who made those darling shirts or the cute matchboxes (blogger fail). But they’re somewhere on the Renegade Craft Fair site so if you really want to know you can totally find out!

Also, happy Monday y’all! Hope your weeks are off to a great start already!

Alright folks, school is back in session! I am so excited for this new year!

As per usual once the school year has started, I have already gotten behind on the blog. But I am going to try really hard this year not let too much time go by in between posts! The good news is that I will be blogging weekly over at school on the Graduate Ambassador blog. This means that once a week I’ll be posting about the goings on of the Book and Paper Arts department. As soon as I have the official web address for that I’ll let y’all know!

I always love the beginning of a school year and I had this realization yesterday that it was my second to last first day of school ever. How strange time is!

Happy fall everyone! I hope you’ve had a great week so far!

P.S. This image is from Shorpy. It’s Chicago’s Lincoln Park circa 1900.

Good morning y’all! I know today is Wednesday and I’ll posting over on Nikki’s blog later but I just wanted to squeeze this little post in this morning while I’m thinking about it.

So, it’s been a year, well, over a year now, since we moved to Chicago and let me tell you it’s been one crazy year. My first year of graduate school was really challenging, living in a new city was really challenging, and being away from all of our solid Memphis friendships was really challenging. BUT we’ve started to come out the other side now, I think, and that feels pretty great.

Last night I went to meet one of my fellow student organization officers to get some little something done. That little task took mostly about two seconds since we decided I would do it at home later and we pretty much ended up eating tacos. Then we wandered around, went into the big Harold Washington Library, and then laid in the grass next to The Bean or Cloud Gate in Millennium Park. It was a lovely evening. It felt so good to be out and about in downtown Chicago.

Nights like the one I had yesterday + days like I’ve been having recently make me very glad I live here. I am so excited about next year. School is going to be fantastic. I can’t wait to dive in! I’m teaching an undergraduate course – PAPERMAKING! I can’t wait to introduce the hand papermaking medium to another group of folks. Plus, there are so many conferences and all that to look forward to – Hamilton Wayzgoose, College Book Arts Association, etc. I just feel like this second year will really be the year that we settle in and find our productive and inspiring place in the city.

So, yay for Chicago! I’m looking forward to what’s next!

Also, happy mid-week everybody! Nikki should be posting later today so be sure to check her post out here and my post over there!

P.S. I snagged the photo above from Shorpy. It’s Michigan Avenue circa 1962. You can see the Art Institute on the right!

Last year we moved to Chicago, literally, the DAY AFTER Printers’ Ball. So, I was mildly disappointed we had missed it BUT it meant that I had a whole year to get pumped for the next one. All of that anticipation was worth it.

So, what exactly is Printers’ Ball???

“The Printers’ Ball is an annual celebration of print culture, featuring thousands of magazines, books, and broadsides free of charge; letterpress, offset, and papermaking demonstrations; live music and dancing; and much more (quoted from the Printers’ Ball Facebook page).” It’s marvelous. I volunteered along with a group of my fellow graduate students to do demonstrations in our three studios, book/paper/print. This meant that I spent the majority of the evening up to my elbows in pulp as groups came in and out of the room. Over 3,000 people attended and over 2,000 visited the Center for Book and Paper’s floor. I answered a lot of questions and made A LOT of paper.

Before the night started though, all of us volunteers had a chance to check out all of the free books, zines, magazines, postcards, and chapbooks that were out on display. Needless to say, I stocked up! I grabbed a couple things from Ugly Duckling Press, a few awesome design magazines, some old issues of The Journal of Artists Books, and some random things that just seemed interesting. It was great and I’ll have reading materials from now until October!

On my break I also got a chance to walk around. It was so fun to watch everyone talking and hanging around with their awesome Printers’ Ball totes full of free literature and people walking by with their faces painted like zombies (oh yeah – the theme this year was IT’S ALIVE all creepy and Halloweeny in July). It was a great atmosphere of friendly conversations and sincere interest. There was also live music on the ground floor and endless events happening all night. I loved it.

However, next year I think I’ll be enjoying it from the ‘just a visitor’ side instead of the ‘crazy busy demonstrator’ side.

So, I gathered most of the images above from random places across the internet – obviously, I didn’t have a lot of time to walk around and take photos. I hope you enjoy them. Should you find yourself in Chicago next fall Printers’ Ball is a MUST.

Bon weekend you guys! Check back on Monday for more catch up blog posts!

P.S. I didn’t even tell you about Printers’ Ball Eve – a private (ooh-la-la) event hosted by The Poetry Foundation the night before the shindig proper. Drew and I went, again along with some of my fellow grad students + their significant others, to the new super swanky Poetry Foundation building. We ate food, drank beer, mingled, and watched a very lovely shadow puppet show of Lewis Carroll’s “Jabberwocky.” Twas very fun indeed!

Photo credits: the two photos of the crowds are from One Book One Chicago’s Flickr page. The image of the wood type is from bluebike on Flickr. The image of the PB sign is from gozamos on Flickr. And yeah the other two are mine.

Good morning to all of y’all on this lovely Thursday!

What a busy summer it’s been so far! My best friend Kelly is getting married in October so last weekend we had her wedding shower (luau themed) which was so fun! The two weeks before that I was assisting poet Kyle Schlesinger, one of two Summer Resident Artists at the Columbia College Chicago Center for Book and Paper Arts. Plus, there was the largest print and poetry celebration of the year, Printer’s Ball. And my Dad turned 60. I also printed Kelly’s wedding invitations and made a slew of new product for Etsy. Oh and read some really great books too!

So, it’s been a nutty full last couple of months and I thought that it would be fun to do a series of catch up posts!

Today is the first day. Above are some images of the new stationery I’ll be putting up on Etsy by the weekend. So, enjoy these guys and check back in tomorrow and at the beginning of next week for some more.

It’s really been a fantastic summer full of productivity and learning – I’m excited to tell y’all about it!

So, my first year of graduate school is done and the summer is off to a good start. I’ve listened thoroughly to both Rumours by Fleetwood Mac and After the Gold Rush by Neil Young (trying to decide which album is next!) and have been super busy making books! Today, I wanted to post some process photos featuring my workspace (aka the living room floor) and a video called Letterpress made by School of the Visual Arts student Naomie Ross.

I’ll start with the workspace and book part.

I’ve had such a great time the past few days making new blank books, journals, and a new addition to the selection, address books. It’s so different to be making something without content — good to remember the pure tactile pleasure of putting a book together. I’ve been adding some embellishments to the covers (mostly because I am totally in love with those little paper flower poofs – I want to put them everywhere) to add some pop. Including an additional decorative element has been super fun. These should be up on Etsy in the next couple of days so keep an eye out! The poor Made by Good store has been so neglected! Oh, and that’s Eloise the cat sitting watchfully up there.

And the video.

I came across this video on Tipoteca Italiana‘s (I met Sandro Berra of Tipoteca at Hamilton Wood Type Museum‘s Wayzgoose last year) Facebook page. I often find that it’s hard to describe to folks exactly what I do so when I saw this I was so excited. It’s a great simple summary of printing.

I hope you enjoy these photos and the awesome video! You can check out more work by Naomie Ross here. Happy Tuesday!

So, the countdown is majorly on folks. At the end of next week I will have completed my first year of graduate school and it will be summertime! In anticipation of all that free time I’m going to have, I’ve been planning summer goals. I’ve really just got two so far. The first is to work through Kieth A. Smith’s Non-Adhesive Binding: Books Without Paste or Glue. The second is to listen to every album on Pitchfork’s Top 100 Albums of the 1970’s staff list. I’m starting with Fleetwood Mac’s Rumours and then moving right along to Neil Young’s After the Gold Rush. So, here’s to looking forward to a nice productive break that will be here oh so soon!

Also, finally the weather is sunny and lovely! I hope it sticks!

Yesterday in my Intermediate Papermaking class we learned how to make paper in the Asian tradition. It was a different process than the one I’m used to and it was so so fun and interesting to learn a new way of doing things in the studio. I’m going to go ahead and describe the process so, get ready for a long post!

We started out by cooking down Kozo fibers. We placed the fibers in a huge pot and added water and soda ash (a base that helps break down all the excess stuff not needed for making paper) turned on the heat and cooked the fibers for about two hours. Once the fibers were easily separated both vertically and horizontally they were rinsed and were ready to start being beaten. This part rules. After squeezing out as much water as possible we got to beat those fibers to a pulp – haha- literally! Papermaking is such a physically involved craft and it felt so great to just bang the crud out of that Kozo knowing it was transforming the material into just what we needed to form our sheets. The actual sheet-forming process is different than the Western style. In Western papermaking you dip a mould and deckle into a vat filled with water and pulp and in one scoop form a sheet. In Asian papermaking one slowly builds up thin layers of pulp on the screen (not sure if that’s the best word) and only after dipping your mould into the vat four or five times do you end up with a ready to go sheet. Once that’s done, the sheet (which is still attached to the screen) is carefully laid down onto a wet pellon (a sheet made of synthetic fiber). The back of the screen is solidly pressed on and brushed with water to encourage a clean transfer of paper from screen to pellon. After, the screen is carefully peeled back leaving a glorious piece of paper. It’s just plain super. All that’s left then is to press the paper and then carefully brush it onto a flat surface. Yesterday most of us chose to use the wall in our studio. The slow drying time increased the translucency of the paper and we ended up with a super delicate beautiful product of our labor.

Okay, I hope that wasn’t too much! It’s just so fascinating to learn all this stuff and it’s hard to resist sharing in great detail! Have a good time checking out all the images. My classmates are awesome action models!