Wednesday, 3 February 2010

Final Book

I thought it was going to be incredibly difficult to decide on the page order for my book because in my mind there really was no outstanding narrative. But once I had finished all my drawings and began to lay them out in various ways it started to become clear which bits worked and which did not.

I realised that I had to start with a strong drawing and end with a strong drawing to ensure that the whole thing wasn't a sort of anticlimax. I had initially planned on having both the cover drawing and the drawing of the spine as the first two pages but when laid out in order it really didn't work. The rest of the book had no closure and seemed to finish quite abruptly after such a detailed introduction. From this I deduced that one of them had to serve as the last page in the book - but which one? I eventually decided that the cover image would be the best way to round the illustrations off - it will feel as though you've just read a magazine and then closed it and sat it down on the table, the cover image is not only the first thing you see on a magazine, it is also the last. The spine image will therefore work in the sense that it reflects the reader pulling the magazine from a shelf. I am aware that magazines are very rarely stored in the same way as books are on shelves because of their flimsiness, and it is mainly only in archives that they are sat this way but that in itself works in my favour - an archive is a colection, and my collection of illustrations have been my way of archiving the main points of that particular magazine.

The inbetween pages just seemed to fall into place after that. With the inclusion of typography on the last page (another lovely end to the book with the message 'wonderful' spread across the page, reveals the tone of the whole thing) I didn't want to have the other typography page right next to it as the content needed to be balanced throughout, and with the small amount of type on the spine image I realised that the 'DASH' page belonged somewhere in the middle.

My least favourite drawing is the one of the male model, so I was eager to put it near the front to put less emphasis on it but I knew it couldn't be the first image the audience saw and so I placed it behind my drawing of the flowery eyed musician hoping that people would be spellbound enough by her to not realise how bad the following drawing is.

Once I had made my first few decisions I let the others fall into place. I noticed that the sections of additional pages that I had drawn on to create perspective seemed to be gradually increasing - like you really were reading through the magazine, creating the illusion of a journey and progress. I ensured that the model in the hat, which has the most additional pages, was placed at the back and BOOM we have ourselves a narrative.

After all the problems I had with the leather it felt so good to finally have a finished book box, even if it was bound with buckram. Instead of the glossy black buckram I opted for the matte finish - definitely the right choice as it gives a much more professional look and it really isn't as bad as I had first anticipated. I think I just have horrible memories of appallingly bound, wonkily cut books from reportage last year and this may have tainted my decision a little. The embossing worked like a treat on the buckram as well, thank god - pretty hard to capture in a photo though. I'm really pleased with my little graphics on the cover, makes me feel like an actual designer!

The filigree paper used on the bed of the tray and the inside of the lid compliment the whole thing incredibly well. It was definitely worth forking out for the whole roll of wrapping paper despite needing only those two sheets. It was difficult to glue down because of the thinness of the paper and it isn't as flawless as I'd like it to be but even still I wouldn't swap it.

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