Making a Book (Also – We are OPEN!)

February 16, 2017 Written by Joe Menth

Oh my. It has been a fast paced existence for us in the last month and a half since we re-opened the studio with quadruple the services we had prior to the Big Move and consolidation of all copy center and business printing services from our purchase of Whidbey Island Printing & Office Supply.

We are…adapting. And quickly. It’s all good. The pace of “copy center” life versus “fine art printing” life is quite different, but not bad. And to boot, we’re of course still doing all of the fine art reproductions, photographic printing, and graphic design work that we’ve always done. We’re just now also cranking out hundreds or thousands of other printed sheets of paper every day on top of that.

Which brings me to our newest capability, with which I’ve just now had the adventure of prototyping and producing a final product: bookmaking. Not the comb binding “8th grade book report” look. Not the wire binding “sales presentation look”. No, we’re talking about actual soft-cover perfect-bound books.

And I just made one. Well, four actually. In the better part of an hour total. Which is honestly really, really cool. I’m kind of excited.

And…I just checked my quick estimate on our pricing of said books against Magcloud and Blurb and such…and it’s comparable within about a dollar…and, of course, here there are no shipping charges. So that’s pretty cool too.

The project came in the door like any other quick-copy kind of job. Or so I thought. I ran off some test prints from a Word document and thought we were done. The fellow needed some tech/layout help putting the cover into a proper format for uploading to the site he was going to order his books from. I did the job, thought I was done, but in the course of conversation – since he was not tech-literate – it came up that he was confused by the process, file types, paper choices…and rather bummed he couldn’t see a proof or have any control over the process by just uploading a PDF and hoping for the best.

I offered that I could try prototyping the book using our perfect binding glue machine and our big stack cutter, just so he could see it in person before ordering. I didn’t really anticipate he’d be ordering from us.

It wasn’t too tough, though there was a learning curve and some cursing involved in the first few stacks I glued and put covers on…luckily they were just unprinted plain paper, so I wasn’t wasting ink. Try, try again; it came out great.

I’d love to look into other cover stocks and find out about all the lovely textures and finishes of interior paper stocks we could offer in the near future, but for now, these books look slick and professional. Just as if we’d ordered them online.

That’s pretty awesome.

Oh. Did I mention? We’re open for business. Yeah, still waiting on our signs to put up outside, but we are most definitely fully open for business. I’ve heard from a number of clients that some other businesses around town assumed both Whidbey Island Printing and Fine Balance Imaging…and Feather & Fox…had all gone out of business. I can assure you that is not the case! We’re here, we’re open, and ready to do…well…just about anything that involves printing!

Come see us. We miss you!

And while you’re at it…you should really think about finishing that book you’ve been meaning to publish. I know a guy that can make it for you. 😉