The Handmade Photobook

Ward Long
6 Sessions »Tuesdays, March 20–April 24

7:30–10:30 pm | Studio 21 | $295

Prerequisite: Recommended for intermediate photographers. Students should bring a cohesive body of work to class.

The history of photography is inseparable from the book. At their best, photobooks can combine the richness of cinema with the openness of poetry and then do things that no other medium can. Historically, photobooks have been limited by the expensive up-front costs of large-run prints on offset presses, but the revolution in inkjet and digital printing makes it easier than ever to make create your own limited-edition artist book, mock up a book dummy for publishers, or play with the form of the book.

In this course, you will work with your own material to create a book that complements and enriches the act of looking at your pictures. In-depth discussions and hands-on activities will cover every step of the process. We’ll start with editing and sequencing, learning how pictures create rhythms and expectations, and how combinations can amplify or simplify the meanings of individual images. Students will experiment with found imagery, edit each other’s work, and bring in examples of their favorite books. We’ll cover the technical intricacies of coaxing book pages out of an inkjet printer, and demonstrate different book-binding techniques, including saddle stitch, perfect bound, and Smyth-sewn. Along the way, we’ll talk about how size, image placement, and materials communicate your intentions and suggest ways to understand the work. The goal is for each student to leave the course with a handmade photobook and a hunger to make more.

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Ward Long is photographer living in Oakland, California. He received his MFA in Photography at the University of Hartford in 2015, and his undergraduate degree at Davidson College.

His pictures describe loss, people, and landscape, and the way all three are inexorably linked by memory. Combining literary precision and cinematic sweep, his projects blend personal storytelling with documentary realism. Much of his work takes shape as handmade books; recent titles have centered on longing for home and the fear you'll never find it, madness and used cars in Jacksonville, and swimming hole cliff in North Carolina.

He received a 2017 Beth Block grant from the Houston Center of Photography, has exhibited nationally, and his work has been featured in SPOT, Burn Magazine, C-41, and YET. He taught analog photography at the University of Hartford, has been a guest critic at the San Francisco Art Institute, and works as a fine art master printer. His self-published books have been exhibited at art fairs and shows across the country, and are in the collections of the University of Virginia, the University of Hartford, and Pier 24 Photography.