Wednesday, July 6, 2016

Customized handmade linocut bookplates for book lovers!

Pasting the original linocut bookplate to the book

Last week I started to work on a small owl design for making a linocut bookplate print. You may have seen a bookplate with "Ex libris" written in the inside cover of a book, which indicates ownership of that book. "Ex libris" meaning is "from the library of" in Latin language. The custom of labeling bookplates to the books has been used by individuals and libraries for over five and a half centuries. People commissioned talented artists to create their custom-designed bookplates. At the turn of 20th century, bookplates were collectibles for their aesthetic value as miniature prints. I proudly continue this old fashion custom of labeling on each of our personal library book with a bookplate saying "Ex Libris Biblioteca Birique" since 1998. And finally, I created a bookplate design which I will use for labeling our new books (see pic above). So, now I am open for commissions, I can create customized handmade linocut bookplates for book lovers!

Let me show you some pictures from making the linocut print and explain the process. I transferred the owl image on lino sheet and started to carve outlines first. Once I completed the owl, I started on "EX LIBRIS" piece and then the book rim piece which is the space for the name of the owner of the book. Afterwards, I cut outside part of the owl and attached them together by putting a clear tape from the back side. (see pics below)

work in progress

I cleaned the table for the printing process and placed an A4-size paper with clear tape. I drew guide lines on it. I put another paper next to it for inking the plate. I put a little printing ink on my marble, and covered the brayer with an even coat of ink. Then I rolled the brayer on the plate evenly. I placed it on the first paper, inside of the guided lines carefully. I covered with printing paper and pressed with a wooden spoon firmly all around the surface and pulled the print out slowly (see pics below).

work in progress

Owl Exlibris Bookplate by Birsen Ozbilge, 2016
Original handmade linocut print, 7 x 14 cm

I am giving the digital printable image of this owl bookplate as a gift. The pdf document is one page including 8 high resolution bookplates with cutting crop marks. Print as many as you need for your personal use. 

I created two pdf documents with A4 (EU) and Letter Size (US) options, choose to download depending on your paper size. Set your printer as "landscape" printing position mode and uncheck "fit to print" option if selected, to make sure they are printed at the correct size.

Enjoy it!

* Click on the images to see them larger.

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