Blue Moons was created as an assignment for a Book Arts class at the Corcoran College of Art. The assignment was to create a piano hinge book, a book structure in which signatures are interlaced and held together by rods or skewers in an exposed binding. I chose to illustrate song lyrics that alluded to colors, assigning a different color to each signature of the book.
The 31 illustrations (30 plus cover) were created in under two weeks… an ambitious goal, but a necessary one since the entire book needed to be completed in three weeks. I had also decided that spontaneity and immediacy were qualities I wanted to achieve in the artwork, so the compressed time frame actually worked in my favor.
Because of the positive reactions to the artwork, I decided to re-create the book in two additional, different bindings: a case bound book and an oversized coptic-stitch binding. The original piano-hinge book and the casebound book are each 5.75″ square, while the coptic-stitch book is much larger: 12.75″ square, and quite heavy.
The books subsequently found their way into three different gallery shows, accompanied by a full suite of 31 framed prints, and three of the illustrations were honored by being selected for the Society of Illustrators 2008 juried exhibition.
Blue Moons, large coptic-stitch version
This version consists of 22 4-page signatures. The pages are Rives BFK printmaking paper, with tipped-in plates printed on Moab Entrada paper.
This 12.75 x 12.75 version features a coptic-stitch binding designed for single-sheet signatures.
Each spread features an excerpted song lyric and a tipped-in plate.
The introductory spread. When open, the book is 25.5″ wide.
A sample spread, featuring Pink Floyd’s “Echoes”
Another sample spread, featuring Nick Cave and the Bad Seed’s “Man with a Red Right Hand”
Another sample spread, featuring Tommy James’s “Draggin’ The Line”
One of three gallery showings featuring the artwork from Blue Moons. Two of the shows were solo shows; the third, in the Corcoran’s Gallery 31, was a group show.
The artwork from the book was editioned in a signed and numbered, limited edition of 15 prints each.
Blue Moons, original version and casebound version Here’s the book in its original piano hinge binding (left), and the case bound version. The books are 5.5″ x 5.5″ square. Piano hinge bindings are typically done with rods or skewers; this version of Blue Moons is bound with bass guitar strings.
A sample spread of the 5.5″ x 5.5″ casebound book, featuring Pink Floyd’s “Echoes”