This is tom from cornwall. we love tom. he makes books, you remember books, right? learn the ancient and endangered art of book binding next sunday 1 july. hear his magical tale...tom o’reilly began an apprenticeship with his father, the renowned bookbinder kevin reilly, in 1993. kevin was described by john benjemen, as a ‘book producer of genius’ for his work on the the old stones of lands end, published by the elephant press, 1973.
the old stones of lands end
tom worked with his father to create special bindings for clients such as sir james goldsmith, edward goldsmith, the earl of st germans, zac goldsmith, sir john aspinal, andrew lanyon, guy bentinck, ken symonds, and robert lenkiewicz.
during this time, tom produced his first book, written and illustrated by himself, the spirit of the pond, which was published by macmillan, london, in 1996 and shoeisha, japan in 1998.
a subsequent poetry book entitled a stream of words, which was written, illustrated, printed and hand-bound by tom, attracted the attention of the late poet laureate, ted hughes. in an open letter about the book, he described it as “…a really handsome little object, which i’m greatly enjoying. i can see you’ve put a lot into it.” tom then founded the angling publishing company, the little egret press, with the idea to combine his love of writing, illustration, typographical design and bookbinding. the little egret press was started with help from the prince’s trust. his royal highness the prince of wales has always been a great supporter of tom’s work.