The Blackbird

By Claire Allen

A novel about the Liverpool Blitz and how it resonates for an elderly woman, caring for her husband.

Wednesday, 9 March 2022

Drawing to a Close

The final step in making your handmade Artists' Book of The Blackbird is the graphite drawings that come folded inside. 

These are taken from life drawings recording a game of Hide and Seek. The paper I am using is vintage Architect's paper my father brought home from the council department in the 1980s; something that happened whenever an Architect's details needed updating. The kind of paper that could be used to create blueprints. 

A children's game of Hide and Seek and a life drawing session share a constraint: the countdown. Often one draws the same scene in decreasing time increments; a minute, 30 seconds, 20 seconds... This allows you to learn about the form of the subject as you go, as certain lines are repeated and simplified.


The Blackbird is now our top priority for completion. Our studio was dogged by long-covid in 2021 and now Omicron has reached us. Another two weeks are currently being lost to illness. You can track progress on our Departures Board

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Top rewards

£50  + shipping
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A handmade, signed limited edition hardback book. Beautifully litho printed in black and yellow. Half-bound in Tex-Libris and Cement paper. Cover foil debossed. Interleaved with fold-out reproductions of drawings by David Henningham


  • Signed hardback
  • Includes postage & packing in the UK