Books I Love: I Sell Fish


The latest installment “Books I Love.” The concept is very simple. Find a book in my collection, photograph it, then share it with you. The idea being to share what I love about the book or why I have it. The books will range from traditionally published, POD and handmade. The only stipulation is that I love the book. Most of them have a backstory, which I will also share. Books and photography are forever linked, so why not explore the relationship through my bookshelf. Hope you enjoy.

This is the first installment of this little series to feature a Blurb book. Now don’t go thinking I’m just a homer. I see plenty of tragic books coming through the halls of Blurb, but I also see many that are worthy of our attention. Remember, I don’t care how it was made. If I like it I’ll feature it. This book was one of the first that allowed me to see the creative freedom I had when it came to making my own book. I was no longer trapped under the warm blanket of conventional publishing or the learned behavior I was so fond of allowing to control my life. “I Sell Fish” was a slap in the creative face. This book reached out, poked me in the eye and said “Stop doing what you think you are supposed to do and start doing what you FEEL like doing.”

7 responses to “Books I Love: I Sell Fish”

  1. Michal Story says:

    Thanks! I love it, too – true testament is that I want more. And gets my creative thoughts going.

  2. Harold says:

    I have actually thought about doing something similar. A way to log the things that are significant and important in my own journey. The revelation, I guess is that you can make a book that doesn’t have any commercial potential but demonstrates to others something more than the brief CV. People have stories and talents that don’t always get shared. Good way to bring them out of the shadows… More!

  3. LionelB says:

    A boundary not crossed by this book is that the paper throughout has the same texture and weight. Maybe that is a useful discipline, pulling the whole together. Maybe a shortcoming. Yes, brown paper can be photographed and artfully incorporated on standard issue paper but it is a poor substitute for the real thing. The price to be paid for reproducing in bulk.

    • Smogranch says:

      About 99.9% of all the illustrated books I’ve ever owned have the same paper throughout. Unless you are using original material, not sure there is anyway around that. As for bulk, that is mostly left to a photographer’s wildest dreams. Most illustrated books sell less than 100 copies. I don’t mean Blurb books, I mean any illustrated book. Wordy books too. Last year 600k-1million wordy books published, 80% sold less than 100 copies.

    • LionelB says:


      Interesting, as that means that typical print runs are now substantially shorter than they were in the 18th century. Until around the ‘Sixties, the practice of ‘tipping in’ was commonplace, especially for photographic plates. Admittedly that approach arose largely from the divergence between relief (type) and intaglio (image) printing technologies, where now the processes have converged. In principle though, an automated version of tipping in shouldn’t be overly difficult to achieve. The question is whether there would be sufficient demand to justify the additional costs.

    • Smogranch says:


      I think the overall market is small but what market there is is key in its stature. A fine line. You can still “tip in” prints, and people do, which is how limited editions are often handled.

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