Hinting at Christmas!

The sample Lulu books came yesterday. I created one that was 8.5" x 11" in full color and the other, black and white in the "Crown Quarto" size. To use the hackneyed corporate phraseology-- our"key learnings" were:

--the paper and ink changes depending on the size and type of book.
--the lovely offwhite paper with luscious blacks only live in the 6"x9" and the 7.5"x 7.5" books.
--all other books are on a bright white (white is calibrated as a 96 --I learned about all of that trolling the paper at Staples and trying to understand what all that means)-- a 96 is a bright bluish white.
--Lulu has a good page that talks a bit about the paper and press work albeit they do not get into colorspaces of files etc.
-- Also, they only use two presses: a Docutech or a Xerox IGen3 (specifically for the Comic sized book in black and white.
--the Crown Quarto book I got back (printing "black and white") were on a bright white paper. The full color black and white cover was perfect. The single color interior was washed out, and to be honest, looked shitty. The solution manifested itself in either going for the cream text and black in the 6" x9" size or the 7.5" x 7.5" which gives you almost screen printed matte blacks. Or, to run the job as four color process, using the color to reinforce the blacks. In the Color book I ran, I put in "acceptable quality" stock imagery, imagery from my portfolio, solid and screen tint colors, solid and screen tint type, type in very subtle color moves to see what was picked up, what wasnt. The surprise was that in my vector work, the color ran extra hot (heavy red and yellow) really pushing the imagery. The more neutral the image, the better off we were. However, my guess is, if you have a portrait, the way they have their presses calibrated, the person you have in your book will be semi acceptable versus color like a corpse or a heart attack victim. The black and white examples I put in the color sample were good and dense...looking wonderful.
--Another key learning is that the black and white books that are saddlestitched are heavier paper (80 lb vs 60 lb) in all cases except for the creamy books aforementioned.

So, go figure. I might put together a little Memento Mori "holiday book" (being the 7.5" square to see how that looks. Could be cute albeit the subject matter might make most people cringe. I find it hard to think that this work lives in the world of halloween--and not year round.

Had a nice IM'my type exchange with Paolo from Lulu to find some of this stuff out...the customer service thing is very can do...and good. You can get an answer as you go...which is super good. They are not terribly techy--but they know where on the site you can go...to try to get the info.

Wrapped and tagged Christmas presents today. My goal of having it all done by Veterans Day (an annual goal) may not be totally achieved, but I am a good half way done. Christmas done by Thanksgiving is a must as December needs to be left open for work for my clients as the time speeding by doesn't register until is is two minutes to midnight and the concept of turning back into a pumpkin becomes very real. I anticipate pumpkinhood daily...sometimes hourly. Thus the desire for a blue pill or something illicit like that.

The new driveway is tres luxe. I feel I might be working for the folks that use that driveway. Next step, a tiny "powder room" under the center stairs. I am not a big powder user, however when I was a Lauder girl, I discovered that powder was up front and center to the whole makeup thing. It went on top of the spackle/ foundation and in a combination of foundation and powder you could eliminate all wrinkles, pores and anything that breathes and become an airbrushed face before the airbrushing happens. In our powder room, there will be no space for the foundation and powdering that needs to happen...however, it will serve for the daily needs a powder room provides beyond the powder. Another step is where the apple trees go? I got a pair of tree peonies in the mail on Friday (ordered in the throes of tree peonies this April/May) from the Park Seed company. We will need to heel them in tomorrow as the freezes promise to return soon...It feels a tad late.

Late here. Gotta go.