Looking back on a particularly tough week of work in the bindery, I was struck by the many different directions I was pulled in, thanks mostly in part to the notable abscence of Enrique Perdomo, AKA in the right circles, as, "The Master Craftsman".
The work load had doubled in quantity, and diversity.There was some repair work, some period binding, some commercial presentation work, some large 3 piece case bindings with boxes and slipcases, all against the constant backdrop of full leather clamshells and their accompanying design work and printing.
With this in mind I will set out to clarify what have been for me over the last 4 years, and what I perceive to be, the fundamental skills required of a bookbinder in order to stay alive in a hostile environment.
I realise that this will be an entirely subjective point of view, but I will offer it anyway, as I know some of the lessons I have learned will be of use if nothing else to many (I hope!)young and aspiring bookbinders.
There will come posts on subjects such as repair, rebinding,boxmaking,and case binding in which I will attempt a frank account of the work completed at PDB, and point to what I believe are the relevant practicalities in trying to survive on your own in the trade.
This account will I hope serve to inform those thinking of making a living as a bookbinder, as to what they can expect.