Never Mind the Book Art Videos

I've been making books for nearly forty years, and ways of exhibiting the books to the public have been limited: leaving them on consignment with dealers; placing them in physical exhibit locations; making appointments and showing them myself to librarians; or having a booth at a fair. In those places, too, there has been the problem of handling: too little and the reader doesn't get to read or experience the art; too much and the book gets shopworn and stained.

We have had the internet as a partial solution, one that, believe it or not, hasn't really been explored enough. Although you can't touch it, a video of a book can show you every page; You can view a book from all angles and even watch how it opens, turns, and moves. I've had still photos of my work online since one could post work online, but I've never made or wanted to make a video myself. 

Recently Etsy began encouraging shopowners to post videos of their items. I immediately rejected the idea without going any further. I'm not in the video production business. But it turns out that's not what they are offering. You can only post five to fifteen seconds: visual only, no sound. Great, if you can see. But a simple constraint to make it easy for the beginner. I tried it out.

I timed myself opening one of my artist books, turning the pages, and closing the book again. Twenty seconds; twenty-two seconds, twenty-four seconds. Turn faster. Not enough time to untie a ribbon or open a box. The beauty of watching a video, though, is you can pause it when you like. I turned faster. I trimmed off the beginning and endings. Fifteen seconds is just enough time to squeak by, with the still photos as bookends.

You can look inside some of my book art (direct link to the books) now at nevermindtheart.

These works currently have the tiny videos. (You may need to try various browsers; I'm not sure which ones work best.) In the future, I hope there is a way to add audio. I'd like to read aloud.

  • Creative Arts Process Cards
  • Epictetus: Once Said a Stoic
  • The Catch
  • What We Reuse
  • Single Eye File
  • Night Monster
  • I Found Out
  • The Third Light
  • Alphabetical Lichencounters
  • Start with Pencil
  • A Fight for Chocolate
  • Mrs. White Has Tea


Liz A said…
your videos are delightful ... had no problem viewing them using Firefox on my laptop, but they were MIA on my iPhone's Safari
Gina said…
Bravo for trying something new and succeeding, Alisa!! I think the little video works well and I hope it brings you attention and new sales at your Etsy site.
Alisa said…
Thanks for looking and letting me know, Liz A and Gina!
(I had some issues with Safari as well and let Etsy know, so we'll see if they change that in the future.)