"Can you do it in a big book?"
"Please can you use a small book?"
Simple requests, but not always that simple to answer :)
I recently snapped the photo shown, to give a client an idea of the size difference between two designs she was thinking of ordering. On the left is a not-particularly-small-book, and on the right is a not-particularly-large-book - but you can see they're still wildly different.
Size is all relative. I'm crap at picturing sizes. I've just ordered 50 cardboard boxes, instead of 500, because, even with a ruler, I struggle to picture the actual dimensions haha
Books are even more of a minefield. "Big" could refer to height, depth, thickness, number of pages...but "big" to one person isn't always "Big" to the next. And just cos a book appears thick, doesn't automatically mean it has many pages, and vice versa. During my Introduction to the Art Of Book Folding workshops, where I've taught this art form to 1000+ others, I highlight this vital point by sharing a selection of books. Two books in particular LOOK damn near identical. Like, no discernible difference, even upon close inspection. Except one of them has 362 pages, and its apparent twin, 960 pages. And that's not even an extreme example, it's a standard, every day variation that I navigate, whilst working with reclaimed, preloved books ♥
So whilst a book may look massive, it might not have that many pages to play with. Conversely, just cos a book looks dinky, doesn't mean it's not capable of creating a hugely detailed design.
This is definitely an art rather than a science, and working with books feels like working with an organic being - every single one is completely different, and will behave differently for me. My job is to predict and anticipate how each book's gonna play...