This year it was my Grandfather’s 90th Birthday and we didn’t know what to give a man who has everything and has seen so many birthdays. Considering it was also 90 it was a special occasion. For this I came up with the idea of creating a memory book from all the photographs my Grandmother still kept in old photo-album books. This then became an A4 landscape, hardcover book similar to that of the Save the Date book.
This time the grid, layouts and style were more concrete. I wanted something modern and clean. I chose three colours: Dark grey, turquoise and white. The titles and body text were all kept in the same structure and the grid accommodated the photographs. This book also had a Table of Contents which the previous ones didn’t have as this book covered 90-years of someone’s life. I also implemented at the same time page numbers and a footer on the right page to identify the chapters.
With the ToC I wanted something unusual instead of a standard linear book ToC. Each chapter has an image header so I let the images be the real highlight and identify each chapter. After some testing with people as to the order of imagery this was the most successful and then laid it out accordingly. It was the image, Chapter #, Chapter Title and Page #. In total there are 10 chapters.
Each chapter had the same first page. It featured the chapter image overlapping with the side banner. It also had the chapter # overlap to incorporate the rest of the page into the layout. The title was then placed underneath followed by a short intro text at the bottom. Since most of the images are from decades ago many had to be edited and restored using Photoshop so they were print quality and the correct colors, as many had faded into yellow etc. This was a lengthy but educational process. Any black and white images had a 25%k border around so they were separated from the background. Any important images I made full bleed. Other images that required a bit of background info I put with simple banners to provide that context.
I also tried to keep the pages fun by using different layouts and textures. I used wood frequently as it adds a vintage and home-made feel so kept that theme prominent throughout. With multiple images on a page I included the year they were taken as each chapter covered about 10 years.
In the end it was an 80-page book full of images and some text. I also managed to get into contact with an old friend of his from his home-town who was able to provide me with some old town imagery they they had collected in their own archive. It was then also printed with a custom clamshell presentation box. The box was white with the title foil-blocked in blue in the corner. Inside there was a special A5 size compartment placed for any loose items that were left such as postcards, marriage certificates etc. It was laid inside with a blue ribbon for easy access and then had the book placed on top.