Folios Workshop

Folios Workshop

A complete visual workshop

How to design and produce "folios" of your photographs

Folios are a cross between a book and a portfolio. Like a book, folios have room for many pages, many images — and even text or text signatures. Unlike a book, they are not bound, but rather are individual sheets. Like a traditional portfolio, my folios contain original artwork, but are not matted. And the folio cover is a more flexible enclosure that’s more accommodating to small hand-held prints than the traditional portfolio clamshell box.

View complete curriculum and sample videos

Brooks Jensen

In this workshop...

You'll explore this unique folio idea, and walk through the process of designing, producing, and finishing a folio of your fine art photographs — including the embossed art paper folio enclosures you’ve seen in both the LensWork and Brooks Jensen Arts folios.

All of our visual workshops are available to stream at
LensWork Online

$59 per year




In the 1980s I began searching for a method to bind into book format individually printed gelatin silver photographs I was producing in my darkroom. I took classes in how to make handmade artist’s books; I visited the Center for Creative Photography in Tucson to scour their archives of artist’s books; and I even hired tutors to work with me individually.

My research caused me to rethink my entire approach to finishing a project of fine art originals. The solution was found in making what I call “folios” — from the Latin root folium meaning a single leaf or sheet of paper.

Adobe reader 9

Curriculum and sample videos

Here is a list of all the individual topics/videos included in this workshop program. This program uses the advanced video features of Acrobat Reader 9. If your computer has an older version of the Reader, you can upgrade for free to version 9 from

The sample web versions of these videos require a Flash player, which is used by many websites and is probably already installed on your system. If not, when you click on the sample links below a message will appear allowing you to download the free Adobe Flash player if you so choose.

Folio Workshop

The Folio Concept

  • Welcome (sample video)
  • Objectives
  • The birth of the folio concept
  • The second generation folios
  • The third generation folios
  • The basic workflow
Folios Workshop

Designing the Contents

  • Creating the printing layout (sample video)
  • Creating the printing template
  • Crop mark strategies (sample video)
  • Darkroom prints
  • Intro to text pages
  • Manual imposition layouts
  • Print booklet
  • Reverse engineering for size
  • The basic print layout
  • The sewn text signature
  • Trimming the finished print
Folios Workshop

Hand-cut Covers

  • Cross-and-fold trimming and assembly
  • Important tools
  • Overview of the cross-and-fold (sample video)
  • Paper choices
  • Single sheet cutting jig
  • Single sheet layout
  • The cross and fold layout
  • Tracing templates
Folios Workshop

Die-cut Covers

  • Base size and four flaps
  • Bézier curves
  • Embossing, debossing
  • Files for the service provider
  • Generic options
  • Introduction to die-cut designs
  • Overview of the die-cut plan
  • The bottom flap
  • The InDesign document first steps
  • The side flaps
  • The top flap
  • Virtual testing the flap design
Folios Workshop

Folding and Finishing

  • Depth scoring manually
  • Final assembly
  • Folding
  • Intro to depth scoring
  • Removing the die-cut burrs
  • Scoring machines
Folios Workshop

Alternatives & Extras

  • Keepsakes
  • Non-folios
  • Live workshop audio
  • Useful links and resources
Folios Workshop

Case Studies

  • A look at 10 folios and their unique variations (sample video)