Some of you may know that before I travelled to Sydney I was busy making presents for Nick and Min. The process was somewhat hampered by the fact that I was suffering from a chest infection. Certainly I would have really struggled to make those gifts without the kindness and generosity of Peter’s mother, Christina, who drove over to our home in order to bring me various types of paper to try. I had telephoned Christina asking where she usually bought paper for projects, in the hope that it was online so that I could use the same suppliers. There were a couple of types of paper in amongst the selection brought by Christina that appeared to be perfect for the project. I was making a small photo book each for Min and Nick giving a brief pictorial history of Maria’s and my lives before we knew them.
This photograph shows pages 2 and 3 of the book. I tried to keep the whole thing in chronological order, apart from the montage shown below.
The paper that Christina brought me was not sufficiently thick to cope with photographs being printed on both sides which meant that I had to sandwich two sheets together with another sheet of paper in between. The consequence of that was a book which was far thicker than I had anticipated. Also, I had to find a way of inserting the montage, without having to punch holes in it. I resolved that problem by affixing that page to the two adjacent pages after they had been sandwiched together and holes punched in them.
As for the thickness of the book, I decided that the best solution I could come up with to bind it, was to sew the book up in the manner that was used in legal documents in the past. I did not have access to the tape used in solicitors’ offices but, instead, used a narrow cream satin ribbon. I believe the end result looks fairly good.
The photograph on the back of the book was taken in April 2002 when I visited Maria in Adelaide. The huge hug you can see in the picture is Maria and me charging up her ‘teddy bear’ hugs. I had bought her a pair of ‘teddy bear’ pyjamas and myself a teddy bear dressing gown. The idea was that whenever one of us wore the teddy bears it charged up the hugs in the other one’s teddy bears! Yeah, yeah. I know it’s mad!
Ideally, I should have used a heavier weight paper for the leaves. The advantages are that [i] it could have had printing on both sides, and [ii] the pages would not have needed lining. However, my options were limited in view of the fact that I was suffering from a chest infection.
In the end, the books achieved what I hoped they would, so they were a success.