I am completely fascinated by these slippery, mysterious creatures and their extraordinary life cycle. They are one of the subjects in my very long, 2015, to-do list. I have drawn some eels before, long ago to illustrate Philip Gross’ poem “Sargasso”. I had been thinking about another interpretation of the poem for a small book.
But meanwhile I am playing with all sorts of printing methods and wanted to make a simple concertina book for a bit more simple bookbinding practice.
I started with some sketches
They do have teeth… awesome!
Then made a couple of simple plates cut from card. I had made some card plates for the moon project but they were not terribly successful. Now I have made up some of my own shellac which I think will help.
Then I made a small simple case for the book. I say simple but it is tricky to get everything square, to stop the ink smudging and to keep everything clean. I printed some foliage for a quick cover, wrestled with some old wood type for the title and printed the back of the eel to tidy that aspect up a bit before pasting the print to the front cover.
The case cover
There are a million things wrong with this but it is a small triumph for me and number two small book form for this year. I am trying to make one a week.
Last week I used an old frog print, folded it and made two separate boards.
The folded book
The front and back boards
The opened out print.
I have to consider this an experiment .. but good practice. See more here.