Making Handmade Books in Translation

Geeking out on language today. A former student/colleague, book artist Casey Gardner just sent me a photo from the Pompidou Centre which started me off. Exciting to see my book on display down in front. Making Handmade Books was translated into French several years ago.

100 Modèles de Reliure Créative

It was translated into Spanish as well.
El Gran Libro de la Encuadernación

Finding the right title for these kind of instructional books has been more of a challenge than you might imagine. I always wanted something a little more poetic, but then no one would know what it was. So then I wanted something precise, so you would know exactly what you were getting.

It is interesting to see all of them together. Each one has a slightly different title and slightly different graphics. French translates as: 100 Creative Binding Models. I like looking at how the languages create meaning. Here, when translated back to English, the word Creative suggests art and/or craft; Binding refers to book; Models refers to examples and blank books, which is what they are. I think the cover they chose was one of the earlier versions.

In Spanish it is The Great Book of Binding: More than 100 Craft Bindings. Here, Great means large; Craft suggests making and art as well; and Binding is a catch-all term. The Spanish version stuck close to the original cover.

And in English to Making Handmade Books we add 100+ Bindings, Structures & Forms. Each word is full of associations. Bindings suggests traditional; Structures suggests architectural; Forms suggests sculptural.

Well, no matter in what language you sew it, it still comes out a book.


Bea said…
I love your book. I made almost every binding In it with an online group a few years ago. It took us a year and a half, making one each week with a break every six weeks...
Alisa said…
Bea, Oh wow! You probably know the book better than I do now. Terrific!