Ken & Wanda Garland’s publishing venture Pudkin Books launched in 2008 with the aim of issuing a series of picture books under the general heading ‘a close look at…’. The titles were launched three at a time and the series now consists of twelve A6 folded fore-edge books that have been digitally printed in Britain in restricted editions.
Many (the first nine) are of Ken’s photography and include charming texts, such as A close look at fallen leaves which relates seasonal changes to the ageing process. In reference to the first three titles – A close look at pebbles, A close look at trinkets and A close look at fallen leaves – Ken writes, ‘It may not be immediately apparent that all the titles share a common feature: each object, whether a pebble, a trinket or a fallen leaf, is shown actual size. This is a most demanding discipline. Many otherwise suitable items had to be excluded because they were too big for the format; but we think the harmonious result vindicated this apparently arbitrary constraint.’ The subsequent three titles show the photographer’s personal fascinations, and the third set of three, ‘record visual experiences that are transitory, or threatened’.
The most recent books, A close look at playing out, A close look at chance and opportunity and A close look at between and beyond explore new pastures through different artists, each book in a different medium – pen drawing, watercolour and photography. Pudkin hope to publish the next three titles in the series within the year.
Before the online launch, Pudkin Books were sold to friends and colleagues with paper order forms and cheques. This is the first time the books are widely available to the public.