This last weekend I flew down to San Francisco to surprise my mom for her birthday. It was a huge success.
She came in to the door and my nephew met her with flowers. Then he peremptorily said ‘close your eyes, it’s a secret!’ She, being a good grandma, did, and he led her into the living room, where I waited. (She did bounce off the walls a bit, he wasn’t very good at leading her, I must say.) When she opened her eyes — the look on her face was priceless.
Big hugs, lots of happiness.
Dinner was yummy and the gift giving great. I had a book I’d made for her . . . it was a copy of her dissertation from 1990. She’d never had a chance to get a copy of her own, something she told me ~2 years ago. I was determined to get a copy and bind it into a real book for her and give it to her for her birthday last year, the 20th anniversary of its acceptance and her graduation as a Ph.D..
As we all know, I was a little ill last year, so this project was put on hold for a bit.
With a lot of help from technology, I converted the scanned copy of the book into OCR text and then cleaned it up. (OCR technology has improved, but its not perfect.) With a lot of help from John, I converted the raw text into something that looked better than the original courier. I sized it as a traditional book, and added a number of color images to the interior. Then we printed it.
Making a book is a complicated process, but only because it has many steps. Unfortunately, I didn’t take pictures along the way. But the breakdown would look something like:
- create signatures (4-8 pages that you fold in half)
- sew the signatures (for strength)
- sew the signatures together
- glue the spine of the bound signatures
- cut the covers and spine from bookboard
- glue a piece of paper to the spine of the bound signatures
- cut the interior pages, the hinge piece, and the bookcloth for covering the covers and spine
- cover the bookboard with the bookcloth (I used two colors, one at the spine and the other for the rest of the cover)
- glue the hinge to the bound signatures
- glue the hing to the bookboard
- glue the interior paper into the inside of the front and back covers
Here’s a bit of what it looked like, in the end:
I’m very pleased with how it turned out.