Handcrafted Maine: Art, Life, Harvest & Home (Hardcover)
Amid the sublime beauty of Maine—its primordial forests, remote lakes, rugged mountains, and craggy coastline blooms a handmade culture fed by heritage, self-sufficiency, and collaboration. Handcrafted Maine: Art, Life, Harvest & Home features lively profiles of more than twenty artists, artisans, and craftspeople—weavers and potters, a painter, an architect, a boatbuilder, a leatherworker, bakers, lobster-men, and more—at work in the woods, towns, and cities of Maine, celebrating the triumphs and challenges of entrepreneurship and independence. Including more than 225 inspiring color photographs and intimate narrative portraits, Handcrafted Maine provides a window into the inner lives of creatives and brings to life the powerful environment and spirited character that nurture the unbridled ingenuity and common-sense approach to craft and life found Down East.
About the Author
Katy Kelleher is a writer and editor living in Buxton, Maine. She writes about creators of all stripes, food sustainability, and culture for local and national media.
Greta Rybus is a Portland, Maine–based photojournalist with an interest in our connection to the environment. She photographs for publications including the New York Times and Modern Farmer.
"Kelleher and Rybus - the book's writer and photographer, respectively - have a broad definition of the word "handcrafted." Their smart little collection of profiles includes not just traditional makers - potters, weavers, leatherworkers, and sculptors - but also farmers, restaurateurs, lobstermen, wilderness guides, and even a seaweed harvester. The book itself is a beauty. Rybus (a Down East contributor) shoots in a style that blurs the line between documentary and portraiture - her shots of Maine creatives at work feel like intimate captured moments. Kelleher's accompanying text is on the reverent side, but she doesn't sugarcoat "the handcrafted life." Readers get a nuanced look at how many Mainers make a living with their hands, along with the challenges such lifestyles can entail."
- Down East
"[W]e are obsessed with fine print, beautiful words and exceptional photography - if we can find all this in a single publication (one that celebrates creativity, community and the landscape), then our adoration is going to be next level. So, not surprisingly, we were delighted to discover Handcrafted Maine, a new coffee table book that profiles 22 craftspeople, producers and creatives who call Maine home. Focussing on the stunning natural setting as much as their featured personalities, the book is a wonderful inducement to travel, consider the land and possibly even get your own project up and running." - Lodestars Anthology
"While [Handcrafted Maine] mines the creative process and highlights Maine's culture and environment, it also serves as an imaginative travel guide for northern explorers, as several of the subjects work with the public, including dogsled outings with Mahoosuc Guide Service in Newry and fish guiding at Red River Camps in Portage. At Grain Surfboards in York, where co-owners Brad Anderson and Mike LeVecchia handcraft wooden surfboards, visitors can spend a weekend learning to make their own boards while staying on Grain's farm. Down East visitors might want to stop in at chainsaw sculptor Ray Murphy's warehouse in Hancock or Swans Island Company in Northport, where blankets are still made by hand." - Boston Globe
"Visitors and residents of Maine will recognize some of the beautiful scenery and genius depicted in this stunning book." - WoodenBoat
"Twenty-two fascinating portraits of artists, artisans, and craftspeople are the focus of Handcrafted Maine. Their stories, clearly written and paired with more than 200 compelling photographs, tell the tale of what it takes to live and create in Maine....Meeting these artists and artisans through this book is a delight."
- Coastal Design
"Through [Katy Kelleher's] insightful essays and Portland photographer Greta Rybus's compelling photos, the book paints vivid portraits of a wide range of creative minds, from wooden surfboard-makers in York, to a meat farmer and noodle joint restaurateur in Portland, to a rustic campsite manager in Portage. Within its pages, "Handcrafted Maine" gives readers a taste of a local-first philosophy that has remained intact in Maine since long before the 'locavore' movement began."
- Ellsworth (Maine) American
"The young team behind this sumptuous, classy gift book traveled far and wide across Maine to report these stories, and each feels lovingly told, in words by Kelleher and photographs by Rybus. The concept was to profile makers of all kinds, so you'll find a mix of stories from both the more artistic side of handcrafting, like John Bisbee's metal sculptures, to the highly practical, like a spread on Tim Semler and Lydia Moffet, the bread-baking duo from Tinder Hearth, the much buzzed-about Brooksville bakery."
- Portland (Maine) Press Herald
"...a lavishly photographed book with in-depth reporting that delivers genuine senses of place...Handcrafted Maine is a beautiful book about hardy, creative souls making it in a state built on locavorism." - Bangor Daily News
"In 'Handcrafted Maine: Art, Life, Harvest &Home,' author Katy Kelleher presents lively profiles of more than 20 artists, artisans and craftspeople. From a painter, an architect and a boatbuilder to a leatherworker, lobster-men and more, the book celebrates the triumphs and challenges of entrepreneurship and independence. With hundreds of inspiring color photographs and intimate narrative portraits, 'Handcrafted Maine' provides a window into the inner lives of creatives, bringing to life the environment that nurtures a common-sense approach to life and craft."
- Florida Times-Union (Jacksonville)
"Handcrafted Maine: Art, Life, Harvest & Home shows what it takes for 20-plus artisans in the northeastern state to make a living doing what they love." - Martha Stewart Living
"Handcrafted Maine: Art, Life, Harvest & Home might launch another wave of migration from Brooklyn. With its lush photography by Greta Rybus, it's the kind of coffee table book that makes you want to run off to Maine to weave baskets or make leather goods or at least, bread." - Portland (Maine) Press Herald
"Brooklyn gets all the props, but Maine's got makers, too. Most don't look like hipsters, but they're good with their hands. Buxton, Maine-based writer Katy Kelleher profiles 22 local artisans, including a boat builder, a basket maker, a potter who creates quirky animal cups, and a chef who keeps pigs. Greta Rybus's evocative photographs make you wish you were there." - Boston Globe