Self Publish, Be Happy: A DIY Photobook Manual and Manifesto
By Bruno Ceschel
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An economic and cultural revolution has shaken the photobook world in the last five years: self-publishing. An army of photographers operating as publishers have had an instrumental role in today’s photobook renaissance. This book offers a do-it-yourself manual and a survey of key examples of self-published success stories, as well as a self-publishing manifesto and list of resources.
The manual portion of this volume offers insight, advice, and rudimentary how-tos for the photographer interested in self-publishing. The survey offers an overview of the contemporary self-publishing landscape; each case study illustrates a particular theme and genre of self-publishing (such as diary, documentary, or conceptual object), and will be accompanied by personal testimonies from the artists who created them. Author Bruno Ceschel, founder of the Self Publish, Be Happy organization, provides a rallying cry for all those involved in the contemporary photobook revolution—a moment in which the photobook, in all its infinitesimal manifestations, has never before been so omnipresent in our cultural landscape, nor so critical to the photographer’s practice.
Self Publish, Be Happy, founded by Bruno Ceschel in 2010, collects, studies, and celebrates self-published photobooks through an ongoing program of workshops, live events, and on/offline projects. Its London-based collection contains more than two thousand publications. Self Publish, Be Happy is the physical manifestation of a worldwide online community formed of a new, ever-evolving generation of young artists, who experiment, stretch, and play with the medium of photography.
Bruno Ceschel writes regularly for publications such as Foam and Aperture, is coeditor of the forthcoming publication issue of the journal Photography and Culture, and was the guest editor of The PhotoBook Review’s spring 2014 issue. He is also an associate lecturer of photographyand contextual studies at University of the Arts London.