2015 isn’t quite ready to wrap up yet — there’s one more big project we’ve been itching to share! If you’re looking for inspiration and ideas to make next year the best year ever, the Radical Self Love Coven Almanac by Gala Darling may just be your ultimate secret weapon.
This beauty weighs in at 109 pages of original content and it was a huge labor of love. I hope you love the design as much as we loved putting it together! The layouts are varied throughout to keep you on your toes and the content, which was submitted by a truly inspiring cast of women will have you re-jigging your morning routine, setting some crazy goals and who knows…maybe even adding a few crystals to your next shopping list. 😉
As you’ve probably noticed by now, there have been quite a few large-scale editorial projects going on in the studio this year and boy, did we learn a lot of lessons! Whether you’re designing an editorial-focused piece for yourself or a client (think along the lines of a media kit, workbook, magazine or novel), I want to share a few tips to make the process easier.
5 Tips To Create Your Your Perfect Editorial Project
1. Request the specs before starting.
Whether you’re taking on a client project or working on one of your own, it’s important to know where this piece is going to end up. Is it a digital-based PDF? Is it print-on-demand? Will it be sent off to a big, offset printer?
If you’re doing print-on-demand, you have a bunch of great options. Our three favorite companies to work with are Amazon Create Space for paperback-style books, Blurb for art and coffee table books and MagCloud for workbooks and magazines.
Each printer has different specs so pay close attention to the bleeds, the minimum gutter sizes, and if at all possible, download a pre-made template that’s set up with the guides already placed inside. Finally, make sure your export settings and file formats are correct because color can shift dramatically if these aren’t dialed in.
2. Create a flat plan.
A flat plan is a document that lays out the content for each page in your document. It can be as simple as drawing a square for each page and mapping out which content goes where and how many pages you’ve allotted for each article / chapter. This becomes even more important when you’re working with a client because they may think they only have 80 pages of content but once you dig in and place it, the count balloons to 120. Being on the same page about the amount of content you’re working with means that you can charge an accurate, fair rate for the project.
3. Get Organized.
This is another big one. Be upfront with your client about how you prefer to have the content for their project delivered. We accept two methods — a link to Google Drive with clearly labeled chapters / documents we can pull from or a Dropbox link with all content and assets neatly labeled in folders. If you get content delivered in pieces, it’s going to turn into a mess that involves a lot of digging through email and worst of all, plenty of wasted time.
4. Only accept finished content.
Starting on a book or magazine design before the content is fully cooked is going to involve many more rounds of edits. It’s important to make sure the content is finalized, proofed and 100% ready to go for the most efficient results. If you leave too much room for change, trust me, there will be plenty!
5. Set realistic timelines.
If a project is going to be released digitally, time frames can be much tighter. After all, the production is much lighter — images can be slightly lower resolution, color profiles can be looser and if you spot a typo, it’s an easy fix. Print on the other hand is a completely different beast. Expect to proof a print piece a minimum of three times and then, going through at least one to two more rounds of design edits with the galley copy.
I hope these tips make your editorial project run more smoothly! And, if you’d like to order a copy of the Radical Self Love Coven Almanac, it’s available here. Have a great holiday! —Shauna