The Box of Dummies is Ready to Ship

The Box of Dummies which was formed last year during the ‘Le Photobook Fest’ dummy award, is now ready to ship! The box features 12 awesome dummy photobooks which I hope will make their way to a whole bunch of different events around the world.

While I have already received some locations for stops, it would be great to have all interest expressed here so that the most efficient route for the books can be worked out. As before the only cost involved is in paying for the postage from the book’s previous destination. If you are interested – pop me an email

The Box of Dummies Website

You can check out all the books by heading to the dedicated site – 

- Matt

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Understanding Stanley

I have been thinking a lot lately about the readership of photobooks which is, in most cases, limited. Limited in quantity, breadth and diversity*. This is little concern for self referential and egotistical works but what about the bookworks that contain questions, answers and thoughts that a wider readership could benefit from.

One such project is ‘Understanding Stanley, Looking Through Autism‘ by Rosie Barnes, a “beautiful new photo book that gives a unique and powerful visual insight into life on the autism spectrum.” In the Kickstarter video featured below, Rosie mentions that she ideally wants this book to be seen by the person standing next to Stanley at a bus shelter who through reading the book may better understand and be more inclined to find out more about autism – what a powerful idea. The book is affordable, a digital edition would make it more so, perhaps this is a photobook that will really break the photobook bubble, find it’s way into school’s curriculums even?

Anyway, you can find out more and fund the project here. 

*Lately newspaper works have sought to fill this need but they are few and far between in relation to good photobooks and could be said to ignore people under 20/25 for whom the medium is un-relateable and cumbersome.
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Midwest Dirt by Nathan Pearce

Now it’s just after harvest time, my favorite time of year. The fields are almost cleared and I’m barefoot on my porch with a beer in my hand. I can see for miles.

For over a year now I have been working with Nathan to bring this fantastic project into corporeal existence and with the aid of Akina Factory who who created the book concept and design, the result is beautiful.

One of the toughest elements of editing this work is something Nathan has pointed out in a recent interview with Darwin Magazine – how the projects needed to move away from cliched depictions of the rural midwest but at the same time not disown culture and environment. While the geographical location rooted in the midwest, this project for me has always been about home, about home as a constant for good and bad. For this reason I hope it appeals to many.

If you are interested in buying the book you can head here.

To see more from the series, head here.

Midwest Dirt
Nathan Pearce

Edited by Matt Johnston
Book project by Akina Books Factory
Edition of 135
Hand sewn binding

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Paul Gaffney at the Photobook Club Belfast

A note from Hannah at Belfast Exposed on their upcoming event:

Self-publishing artist Paul Gaffney will be taking over the next edition of Photobook Club Belfast. Gaffney will present a range of works that have influenced the concept and design of his recent publication ‘We Make The Path By Walking’. While discussing his own approach to book making the artist will also provide examples of his own book dummies for visitors to handle and explore.

Thursday 19 June
5.30pm to 6.30pm
Free admission
All welcome

To find out more about the artist, click here.

This event will be followed by the opening of the Belfast Photo Factory’s 2014 annual members show in the Exchange Gallery, Belfast Exposed at 7pm. 

Venue: Belfast Exposed
Start Time: 17.30 - End Time: 18.30

Paul Gaffney – We Make the Path by Walking

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The Contemporary Photobook – A Call for Papers

Larissa Leclair has just put out a call for papers for a print volume called ‘The Contemporary Photobook’ which will be published later this year. There are a range of different topics to explore regarding the current state of the photobook and the self publishing movement.

Have a look here for more information and to submit a proposal

- Matt

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The Second Meeting of the Photobook Club Hong Kong

Great to hear of the success of the first Photobook Club Hong Kong meeting as well as details of the next meeting (via Sarah Van Ingelgom) …

Photo Book Club Meeting
Saturday 10th of May 2014 | 4 pm
at the AO the Photo Book Center
Asia One Tower, 8 Fung Yip Street

Theme: the Japanese Photo Book
Moderator: Mark Pearson (from Zen Foto Gallery, Tokyo)

After the success of the first one, we are glad to announce our second Photo Book Club Meeting.

PBC was initiated in the UK as an initiative for informal gathering for photo book lovers to share their enthusiasm. Each meeting, guests are invited to bring their own favorite photo book or borrow one from the bookshop (please come a bit earlier if you wish to do so). Each guests will introduce the reasoning for their choice which typically unfolds into lively discussions. This is not a course or a workshop, nobody is wrong or right. PBC meetings aim to learn from each other and explore in a friendly interactive way. Photographers and photo book fanatics are very welcome but its not a must… just your enthusiasm is already appreciated a lot. Moreover, the meetings are FREE of charge.

For the first gathering we will choose ‘the Japanese photo book’ as a theme. The Japanese Photo Book is a unique genre on its own with a style of photographing unseen and very different than how it was done in the West until then. Leaders in the field were Araki and Daido Moriyama but there are also a lot of other famous and more obscure talents to be discovered.

Moderator will be Mark Pearson. Mark has been active in both exhibiting and publishing projects with Japanese artists through Zen Foto Gallery; a Tokyo based gallery specialize in Japanese photography.

Attached some pics of the first meeting…

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Represent your photobook love in red this season…

The Photobook Club baseball shirt is ready to be sent to print. in order to keep costs down as much as possible I am taking pre-orders so there is no surplus of unwanted sizes! They will be ready for shipping in about 2-3 weeks and if you are going to be seeing me after that time and want to avoid shipping costs, just email me and I will create a new listing with no shipping charges.

Thanks to the awesome Daisy Ware-Jarrett for the new logo design and her expertise with this. more details below, click here or on the image to go to the shop and order.

- Matt

Long sleeved, baseball-style top with Photobook Club varsity logo across chest and traditional logo at neck on rear. It’s what all the cool folks will be wearing in summer y’know!

Brand: Fruit of the Loom
Fabric weight: White 160 gsm Cols 165 gsm
Material: 100% cotton Belcoro™ yarn

Contrast raglan sleeves
Cotton/Lycra© contrast rib neck
Twin needle stitched neck, sleeves and hem

Sizing with chest to fit given in inches:

S – 35/37″
M – 38/40″
L – 41/43″
XL – 44/46″
XXL – 47/49″

If you buy several for group, shipping discounts will be shown

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Updates from Alicante

Great to hear recently from Jose Carlos Robles of the Photobook Club Alicante in Spain…

I’m delighted to tell you that we are running this month our sixth meeting, great news for us.

We are very happy because the Contemporary Museum of Art in Alicante is nowadays supporting us, offering their public library to celebrate our sessions. The Museum has a great collection itself and we are very proud to collaborate with them.

I send you some photos of the last event at the Museum.

Here  is the link with news of our next session and another one from the Museum itself.

You can see here the page were the Museum makes a little comment about the Photobook Club.

- Jose Carlos Robles

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