Friday, 18 January 2013

Making books: 2 content

The book I'm going to concentrate on is the limited Sketchbook. I'm actually really interested how this form of hardback book will turn out as the company I've chosen doesn't make it with sewn signatures- just glued. (Bear in mind a few of the Archaia Hardbacks are made in this fashion, so hopefully it's ok.)
I'll also have to have a good think about the cover as the groove left by the binding process is now something you have to keep in mind  during your cover design process for designing around, or including. I've decided in this case it'll probably have to be a non centered image- or the groove will probably make the pic balance look off.
[The way to get round this is probably to have a dust cover- this covers the groove.]

I was reviewing a lot of my pictures last night (from 2008, I'm halfway through 2010) and it's only around 2010 that I feel that I'm truly starting to like the elements in my work. (I spent years trying to get Maria's face right and only just hit that point of satisfaction recently.)

A lot of things online tell you not to go back and revise your stuff.

A lot of advice is to bare all and accept your old work...

And I really don't want to. :p
This probably reveals a huge flaw in myself as an artist, but I've always felt that I should be true to myself in doing things. But don't be like this if you aim to be published for real, people won't let you get away with it. You have to be a hardworking lucky-ass bastard to get away with it.

A lot of my 2008-2009 work is mainly me trying to work out how to draw humanoids again after a long hiatus drawing anthropomorphic animals [In children's books I may have to clarify] and being told "NO! Don't draw manga." If you want to be taken seriously as an illustrator, yeah, don't do what I did- which is go back to a style I'm happy to do, but which is INFINITELY unpopular among the professional artistic circles. I did, and most people don't realize I work full time as a professional illustrator for my day job.

 As well as the jump from traditional media to using Wacom, I'd say most of that time was spent coming to grips with just getting used to multiple changes.  All it shows was the sheer volume of drawing I was doing to get used to a medium. (Of the saved files in yearly folders, it works out about 1 or two drawings a day. Then I also had professional gigs running side by side. I never really STOP drawing.)

When I looked through 2008-2009 I realized something- I rarely every did any colour drawing during that period. The idea to do a separate colour book including work during that time was laughable.

I had to revise my thinking on the content a little, I have estimates for the current book up to 100 pages [I'm going to need 200 at this rate though], and it's a fairly high price for each book so far. But given that I'm not intending it to be commercially available, I may decide to choose images as if I were making a portfolio, keeping stuff that is mnemonic, and anything that reminds me to draw a certain way because the original concept of it was for a reference book for myself.

In any case, I have a ton load of considering to do before I get to the next step- laying out the pictures into the page formats, which will actually be a technical bit I'll go through properly in my next blog.


No- I'm not a pro at this- so I'm looking at making books in a very artists POV, but somewhere between technical and artist is a space where you get to design really awesome books with your hybrid know-how.

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