This news is for paper and ink lovers! We’ll talk about the book printing process!
Because, yes! The book is now printed, and last week, I went to Belgium to see this delicate step =)
I know, with online print services, the process is simpler (but often, not so good) :
But when you spent more than a year on a project, you don’t want to have the book ruined with random colors, so the process I’ve been through was a bit more complex (but much more reliable!).
Well, if you follow these news and/or the facebook page, you already know I already completed 6 of these steps!
For the final one, I went to Lesaffre printer, in Belgium, to check directly the result. They are specialized in French and Belgium comics.
In this big (and clean!) warehouse, there are huge paper rolls… That’s something like 15 kilometres (9 miles) of paper!
Machines are the size of a bus. And very noisy.
When I arrived, the printer employees were analysing my pages on their work table.
English and French covers!
Several pages are put together on a big sheet of paper. If you change colors on one of these big sheets, you change the colors on all pages contained on the sheet, so the printer often put the pages of the same hue together.
All these beautiful pages were just tests and are going to be recycled (but I kept some as a souvenir).
When you agree with the result, you sign (again) the printed pages.
The printer is so fast, it can print thousands of pages in one hour.
That’s the book! Yes, your book is for now a giant stack of sheets.
As a bonus, I made a video with the images I shot :
I can honestly say the colors are just perfect for me, I didn’t expect such a good result. Every friend who has already printed a book told me you have a big loss when your illustrations go from digital to print, but I didn’t see anything like that. The printers knew very well their job!
The printer will cut, fold and bind the pages to make a real book
I will receive, well… a ton of books at home
I’ll have the prints, postcards and everything else printed (but not by the same printer… The Belgium printer is specialised in comics and illustration books, not in goodies)
Then start the Logistical Challenge
Books shipping ! (early July I guess)
Thanks for reading! I can’t wait to see the final books with hardcover. See you soon!
Almost all pages have been finished this month. Here is the flatplan (in French we call that « chemin de fer », railroad), that’s the view of all the pages of the book.
I was aiming to finish all illustrations last week, but I need to admit I still have some pages to finish, sorry! If you feel impatient, these are exactly my feelings too… I didn’t expect this book would require so much time!
– Translation and edits
The edits are finished in French and English. The Spanish translation is almost complete. We are starting a second round of edits for all 3 versions.
Finding a title for French and Spanish was not easy to do, as « Fieldwork Fail » is impossible to translate literally, it just sounds bad in both Spanish and French. Thanks Marta for finding the Spanish title!
I had designed a temporary cover for the Kickstarter, but it didn’t stand out enough. So I made a new cover. Here are some researches, and the cover.
I abandoned the idea of having the scientist surrounded by crocodiles, because what is interesting in these stories is also the fact these are everyday failures, something that could happen to anyone. So I drawn a scientists whose stuff is stolen by a monkey. I hope you’ll like it!
I prepared a survey. Those who backed the project on Kickstarter will receive soon an email from CrowdOx. Please answer it ! That’s not a spam or some phishing, that’s the survey manager I’ll use (like BackerKit if you know it). I chose Crowdox because it was the simplest option I found, for me and for you.
You will be able to make everything you want, including :
choosing the options and the language of the book
updating your address
changing the pledge
adding options or extra copies
About extra copies : The price for any extra copy will be only 17€, shipping costs included. I do that because the shipping costs are lower per book when you ship 2 books than a single book.
I will also add the option “tracked shipping”, especially useful for shipping outside Europe. You will likely receive the survey in the middle of the week.
Sending the survey
Finishing the illustrations
Another final round of edits for all three languages
Exporting and sending the files to the printer
Sending the ebook
Proofing (physical & contractual printing test)
!!!!! Launching the print of the book !!!!!
Starting to make the rewards (including the “behind the scenes” booklet)
See you very soon for the survey! And again, thanks a lot for your support and your patience…
On the model of last month, here are some news about the book with some explanations about how I work. With more colors this time!
It was the focus of the month ! (as it will be next month)
I currently work mostly on the right-hand pages, which contain testimonies of the scientists.
How I work
1) I cut the text in blocks, leaving space between them, and I draw a few sketches in this empty space
2) I set up a color palette, from the left-page illustration colors
I make this palette to have graphic consistency on the double page. I have a custom palette system to manage colors.
3) From this palette, I make a color key. A color key is a very simple version of the illustration, that gives general ambiance and colors. It’s much easier to modify the colors of a color key than a more advanced illustration.
Sometimes I also refine my rough a little bit.
4) I start to draw the illustration in silhouette. As an animator I’m used to think in “silhouette”. If the silhouette is not easy to read, the final illustration won’t be neither.
5) Then I finish, using the colors of my color key.
Also done this month
Jessica (english editor) continues to edit the pages (and will likely finish this week!)
I asked to a friend, Ninon, to edit the French version. Ninon is a skilled professional editor who wields the language with unique mastery 🙂
And Marta, who is spanish, will start soon the spanish translation.
I started to work on the french cover. English cover will also change from the Kickstarter cover.
I presented a few pages to french distributors. And they loved the project!
Finishing all illustrations
Finishing the translations and edits for all languages
Sending you a survey asking you options, shipping addresses, among other things.
I usually don’t talk much about politics, but it seems than science has never been so politic than these last weeks. Some people just don’t trust science anymore. In a world where people (and even governments) don’t understand scientists, maybe talking about science, about human mistakes and about how scientists actually work could contribute to bridge the gab between scientists and non-scientists… I hope!
Now let’s talk about the work in progress of the fieldwork fail book !
The good news, I finished all rough pages of the book!
What I call rough page is the whole content of the book, before editing and color. Here’s an example.
On the same time, I worked with Jessica Groenendijk who corrects the text. I don’t speak english good enough to skip this part!
Jessica is a scientist I met in Cocha Cashu in Amazonia. She studies giant otters and write books, including children books. And she’s a perfectionist. She was the perfect person for editing texts and make sure the whole book has a consistent style. She understands well the project and is very reactive.
(by the way, I’d like to thank all people who offered me their help for editing! I appreciate a lot).
But what about seeing more the process of building these rough pages?
How I make a page
1) First I exchange emails with the scientist to ask him or her more details about their research and the story. It can be 2 emails or it can be 15 emails, or even instant messaging.
2) When I have all content I need, I sort, select and put together into one page all these pieces of text, and I draw a few sketches for the illustrations. Sometimes it’s easy, when I have a lot of short texts.
Sometimes it’s more complicated, when I have long paragraphs of text. It’s a book with a lot of illustration and the space for text is very limited. The longer the text, the more I need to cut!
3) Then I send the rough page to the scientist for feedback
4) I correct a few details on the page and then I send it back to Jessica for editing. She corrects the content so I can go to the next step -> color !
Also done this month
– Asked and received my ISBN numbers ! I’m now officially a publisher =) An ISBN number is a number used to identify any book in the world. Any book in your library has one!
– Have been in contact with distributors for the French version, and translated some pages to present the project.
– Modify the rough pages to include Jessica’s edits and scientists feedback.
– Color ! Illustration !
I will likely finish this step for all pages in March. Here is how a page looks like with illustration:
Ok that’s all! I need to keep all other things for the next news 🙂 If you like this format of news, I’ll try to make something similar at the end of the month.
Hi everyone! Some news from Cocha Cashu biological station, in the magnificent rainforest of Amazonia, Peru. I was invited here by Roxana Arauco, manager of the station, after she heard about the project of my fieldwork fail illustrations.
I still continue to work on the book while here. The days are long here (I wake up with the sun and the howler monkeys at 5am) so I usually draw and/or walk the morning and advance on the fieldwork fail book during the afternoon.
Wow!!! Since yesterday, it’s raining backers, so not only we reached four digit but with 1050 we’re getting closer as well to the 1080 final stretch goal!!
To thank you properly for all your support, I promised a surprise for the 1000 milestone (beyond the spanish version now available!). Here it is.
My very talented friend Geoffroy Moneyron, animator and storyboard artist, had the great idea to animate one of the fieldwork fails. He chose the story of Aditya Gangadharan and made an amazing work transforming the illustration into an animated short!
(sorry, no sound for now… I hope to make a version with sound later!)
If you’re interested by Geoffroy’s work, please follow his tumblr!
Thanks all of you for helping to reach this great step!!!