The covers of our Lost Art Press books are important to me, even though we don’t sell our titles in bookstores, which is where the cover can make or break a book.
I don’t want our covers to say “buy me.” I want them to say “open me.” There’s a difference. I’ve had many non-woodworkers tell me that the cover of “The Anarchist’s Tool Chest” was so oddly compelling that they had to open it and see what was inside.
As I am closing in on the end of the writing for “Campaign Furniture,” my lizard midbrain is turning its attention to the cover. The concept is to make the cover itself look like a campaign chest. There will be ogee (or ovolo or straight bracket) brasses on the corners of the cloth-covered hardcover. In the center will be a pull. It’s my favorite campaign pull, which I found on a piece that is likely from the Indies.
I’ve been trying to draw this pull for the last couple weeks. It’s asymmetrical and doesn’t have a straight line in its profile. I’m getting closer.
— Christopher Schwarz
23 thoughts on “‘You Can’t Judge a Book by its…’ – Oh, Shove Off”
Mirror image. Right down the middle.
Wait….. How is it asymmetrical?
Like a human face.
I guess the hardware was handmade then, not something done as a factory run? Can you put the piece on the scanner and see if it gets a decent image? Maybe a white cloth over it with a loosely filled sandbag over that to keep the light of the scanner from washing it out? Then try to manipulate that in illustrator to clean it up …. If that makes any sense…
At first glance, I thought; Menorah. Maybe it’s just the season.
Just thought you might like this!
Russell, that is quite a box!
That is awesome!
Brass pull design: Teddy Roosevelt or Zena Warrior Princess?
I know exactly what you mean. I built a toolbox and wanted to give it a Greene and Greene feature so I tried to use a CAD program to draw the lift pattern. I failed time after time. Just wasn’t right. Then I sketched the pattern by hand and I got it. Something in those hand draw curves that have the correct look.
Abebooks will have a new advanced search radio button “embossed non-jacketed brass hardware hardcover”.
About a week after buying The Anarchist Tool Chest my dad (also a woodworker) came to visit. I had left the book sitting on the coffee table and as soon as we sat down he picked it up. He didn’t know it was a woodworking book and I hadn’t yet told him that he should check it out, but he did, and now I need to buy as second copy.
Hi Mr. Schwarz – Like reading your well photographed entries and am geed up to see the campaign book come to fruition.
One thing I’ve noticed and I’m sure it’s been noticed and perhaps remarked upon in other replies here, is that I see a few more hand drawn images and I’m wondering if you could take a few moments to write about that? I adore sketches. there are certain things that don’t quite translate into sketchup models and these formative strokes are to me important in setting a tone for a piece.
Have you been practicing this style more? am i being too invasive? sorry…
I call it “Frankensketching.”
I start with a photo of what I want to draw. I’ll alter it in Photoshop – bump up the contrast and erase parts I don’t want to see. Sometimes I add lines that might be indistinct. Then I print it out slightly oversized compared to what I want in the end.
I tape a piece of tracing paper over the image and trace the elements I want to see in the drawing. I add and subtract details. Change turnings, etc.
Then I scan the tracing and mess with it a little more – blur it, pump up the blacks etc.
It’s a very simple process that anyone can do. Each drawing takes about 30 to 45 minutes, start to finish.
Will the deluxe version come with a travel cover that doubles as a cupholder to attach to my roorkee chair?
it reminds me of the sutton hoo helmet and also some thing older i saw but can’t remember in which place.
I am anxiously awaiting this book. Everything I have seen thus far is exciting me and now the idea you have of the cover is great! I LOVE books and I appreciate the artistic nature found in some books design. Kind of like Neverending Story cover….it BEGS to be read!
You might try varying the line weights somewhat. It gives a nice subtle degree of freedom to control the focus and movement of the viewers eye.
It does tend to interfere with finishing, though.
Perhaps if I used the pencil bevel up…
Wouldn’t that violate the clearance angle?
Very “breakfast of champions” look, by the way. I’m gonna guess that’s at least partly what you’re shooting for.
This sounds like a coffee table book that’s cover folds out to transform it into a coffee table.
Make a photo of it and trace the photo, would that help?
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