Peter and Donna Thomas have been making fine press and artist's books for over 40 years. When they started, as craftspeople at Renaissance Faires, they fell in love with the graceful beauty of "gypsy wagon" caravans that other vendors had made to sleep in or use as booths for selling their wares. In 2009 Peter and Donna built their own tiny home on wheels, designed after a typical late 19th century Redding Wagon. This blog documents their trips around the country, taken to sell their artists' books, teach book arts workshops, and talk about making books as art; as well as to seek out and experience the beauty of the many different landscapes found across the USA.

Peter and Donna started their business in 1977 and made their first book in 1978, so from 2017-18 are traveling to celebrate 40 years of making books with shows in a dozen libraries across the country. See the schedule on the side bar to find if they are coming to a town near you....

Thursday, June 10, 2010

California, for now.

It's been 2 weeks since we got back to Santa Cruz and it feels like years since we have slept in the gypsy wagon! No worries, though, we are gearing up to be back in Salt Lake City real soon and will be heading north from there for more adventures of the wandering book artists!
Meanwhile, we have been making lots of new books to show you. Donna made a bunch of one of a kind books, some using the paintings she just did in the desert this spring. 

Peter printed a miniature book using some vintage photo-engravings that Karla gave us of cowboy scenes like sitting around an open campfire, wearing cowboy hats and boots and pictures of rearing horses. It is bound with wooden pine boards that our friend Jim milled from his land in Mariposa County, California. A saddle leather title panel on the front cover is stamped with a cowboy on his horse.
While here in California, Donna went to the Sierra Nevada to check in with the granite. She went on a short backpack trip near Hetch-Hetchy, in Yosemite, where John Muir had his last fight to save the wilderness. Soon after he died, the dam was built there to secure a  water supply for San Francisco. Late spring snows and a long winter made for lots of water in the waterfalls and rivers.
The bridges in front of Wapama Falls. 
Crossing a boggy meadow, so nice to be barefoot!

Painting near Illouiette Falls, Yosemite.
We also attended an opening ceremony for a newly named stretch of county road, "John Muir Highway" up in the foothills of the Sierra. Since Peter and I walked on that route back in 2006 when we walked from San Francisco to Yosemite, we got to say a few words to the gathered crowd and hold the ribbon!
We are headed for Salt Lake on June 21st, the start of summer! Let us know if you would like us to stop by and show you our books!

1 comment:

rickzeek said...

Please stop by our place and show us your books. They sound quite nice. We can play you a song!

Rick Zeek