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The book dummy

Making the book. Getting closer. Soon.

Soon there will be the official book dummy and I can’t wait to hold it in my hands and kiss it! Yep, it really is that exciting and I have a feeling this version might just be the one closest to my heart.

In the meantime here’s an update on the process so far:

I’m becoming adapt at InDesign. Teaching myself through trial and error and more error. I’d like to thank all those YouTube folks for their ‘How to..” posts. Don’t know how I’d do without those videos. Each time I learn a new trick I feel like jumping up and down. Literally! By now I’ve gotten a nice groove going where it no longer feels like I’m in a foreign country and can’t speak the language. Seeing the page spreads roll out of the printer is akin to magic. At times I’m reminded of the darkroom days when the photographic image began emerging in the developer tray.

The Epson 4900 is a beauty. The print quality is really superb although I will need to tweak settings here and there. Mainly the shadow areas sometimes go too dark, especially when the image is contrasty to begin with. The paper I chose to print on is Hahnemühle Photo Rag Book & Album. It’s coated on both sides and it’s 100% cotton with a dreamy smooth matte texture that gives the images a kind of a depth. The weight of the paper has a pliability I was looking for – when your turn the page it feels like a page should, it bends and curves. It unveiles and covers.

The editing and sequencing of the layout so far looks good. Of course using double-sided paper makes the printing take longer since the printed pages should be left for a least 24 hours to dry properly. For the actual edition production I might even give it 48 hours just to make sure the image weds with the page.

The book dummy is a companion – your guide – to the finished product. Each step informs the next. Just the other day I made a page/image change.  At this point I just need to print the last two spreads, which will have text. In couple of days when all the pages will fimally work together, the next exciting stage of this journey will begin: making desicions on bookbinding, end-pages, cover and all the related matters. I’m set on printing an edition of 30 books and three APs.

Since all books will be hand-made each one will inevitably have its own uniquness. I find that very appealing. It makes me think of the kilim weavers inserting a secret message that is just slightly off the pattern, not easily visible but there. In a way each book has its own mystery to be discovered. That’s the way of books. And photographs.

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