The photobook landscape has changed drastically over the past few decades due to the rise of the self-publishing movement. In April, photographers Raymond Meeks and Justine Kurland co-taught a three-day workshop that walked students through the process of designing and producing an artist’s book.
On the first day, Meeks and Kurland introduced possibilities for different types of artists’ books, followed by a discussion on how to develop a narrative arc, while showing examples of their own work. Special guest Tim Carpenter spoke about his book “A house and a tree”, as well as the small imprint he cofounded. Later in the afternoon, Meeks and Kurland reviewed students’ proposed book projects and offered individualized suggestions regarding each person’s edit and how to sequence their images. The following day, they continued to review book projects, then worked as a group, with an InDesign assistant, to create a unique layout for each participant’s book. On the last day, the group constructed their books using various binding methods by stitching, folding, and gluing the spreads designed the previous week. In the afternoon, they were joined by photographer John Gossage, who spoke with the students about their work and gave a short talk about the exciting creative potential that lies within the making of photobooks.
“Sensational instructors—most generous with knowledge and help.”
“Great instruction, and incredibly intimate individual attention.”
“Justine and Ray have passion, insight, and a generous spirit.”
Raymond Meeks (born in Ohio, 1963) has been recognized for his books and pictures centered on family and place. In November 2014, a mid-career retrospective of his books and prints was organized by Light Work in Syracuse, New York, featuring more than twenty books, including self-published works and numerous other publications. Meeks currently teaches a course on photobooks at the Rhode Island School of Design and lives in upstate New York.
Justine Kurland (born in Warsaw, New York, 1969) received her BFA from the School of Visual Arts, New York, in 1996, and her MFA from Yale University in 1998. Her work has been exhibited extensively at museums and galleries in the U.S. and internationally. In 2013, she was awarded a New York Foundation of the Arts’ Artists’ Fellowship for Photography. She is represented by Mitchell-Innes & Nash, New York.
Tim Carpenter is a cofounder of the photobook publishing imprint TIS Books. He resides in Brooklyn and photographs extensively in central Illinois. He received an MFA in Photography from the Hartford Art School, Connecticut, in 2012.