You should stop what you are doing and make one of these. You should. You know me, always pushing the print angle, but for me, there is no completion of a project until it lands in print. Until then, well, you are just rearranging deck chairs. Print forces us to make real decisions, decisions that tend to come with far more pressure than those aligned with the digital space where leaving things in has become the norm. The beauty of print is that it comes with the pain point of price. Yes, you have to pay, but the reward for expenditure far outweighs the bill at the end of the month.
What I love about making a journal is that there is no pressure to display my talent, or lack of there of, as a photographer. For me, those days are long gone. And frankly, I don’t find that conversation that interesting. Except for a small, elite group, I think the days of photography as THE conversation are mostly behind us. For me, photography is more powerful as a small part of a larger conversation. I say this based on personal experience of watching civilians attempt to engage with photography while running a human operation system that simply cannot pay attention to ANYTHING.
There is no right and wrong. How often in life are you confronted with this reality? Certainly not in most instances, but with the journal it is all about the experimentation. And remember, this is the BEFORE version of this book, still pristine before the pen, ink, market, tape and paint find their way onto these pages. Yes, this book is built to be modified. Like a GMO crop about to tweaked for maximum creative damage.
And the best part, this book is for you and you alone. I’ll show this book now, and perhaps a spread or two when the book is complete, but otherwise this little playground is for an audience of one. If you make your journal for me you aren’t really journaling. Much of what you see online, like most other topics in the world, is a charade to build following, and this certainly applies to the journaling world. Pages built for Pinterest. Stop, stop and stop. Don’t do that to yourself. This is actually for you and you alone. Think about that.
I have to admit, after thirteen years of being in the book world, I am weary of those who approach with publishing dollar signs in mind. “How am I going to live off my book sales, “ they ask. “Have you done a book before?” I ask. “Never,” the respond. “Do you have an audience?” I ask. “I’m on Instagram,” they respond. “No, I mean a real audience,” I ask. “What do you mean?” they respond. You get the point. I don’t know a single person in the world who lives off their book sales, especially when it comes to photography books. (I do know an author or two who almost entirely live off their sales. Almost.)
For the vast majority of us, making books is about a dose of good, healthy fun as well as a way of better understanding what we have or don’t have as storytellers. That’s it. Be happy with that. We have to pay taxes, work tough jobs, stay connected when we crave solitude and we have to deal with aging parents, increases in cost of living, injustice, corruption and greed. Don’t let the book become the job. Just enjoy. You and those are around you will appreciate it.
This is an 8×10, softcover, Blurb journal which lives under it’s own heading in the BookWright software. 120-pages. $25.00.