Jenn Manley Lee


Posts tagged pre-orders

Digital color match proofs of select pages for Book 1

Click above image for larger view.
I couldn't afford a full set of color proofs, so I worked with the printer to select key pages on each signature to match to on press. This photo doesn't do the color of these justice. "Wet proof" of the endpapers for the hard cover (PMS 8860 metallic over PMS 1795)
Click above image for larger view.
Oh my goodness, this whole book thing is really going to happen, isn't it?

Cover for Book 1 : Wander

Click above image for larger view.

I've been saving this as a signal that the book is finally on its way to the printer.

As an apology and thank you for this whole process taking two months later than I than anticipated, I will be sending a print of the full wrap around art–without logo, etc–to everyone who has pre-ordered this book. I will also be providing free access to a pdf and/or cbr file of the book to the same. And maybe one other gift if I can source it for a reasonable cost.

I will closing pre-orders on the 21st of this month, when the cost of the book will rise from $25.00 to $26.50 USD. I won't be offering the custom dice beyond pre-orders and probably not the kerchiefs either.

This also means that I will soon be updating Book 2 again! I'm aiming to resume on a regular basis on the 21st of this mont, but that is dependent on my fulfilling of other obligations first, including finishing the spot coloring of Hope Larson's upcoming graphic novel adaptation of A Wrinkle in Time.

I will give further updates on the ETA of the printed books as I get confirmation from the printer.

Process of an Illustration - Stage 1: Initial lines & color

As I wrap up the production files for the print version of Dicebox: Book 1 : Wander, I've decided to share my current art process to compensate for sporadic page updates. This'll specifically follow me making a stand alone illustration, but a lot of the steps hold true for how I approach comics. The piece in question is the art for the cover spread for the Asides, those fill-in comics that I was lucky enough to have folks gift me when I needed a break from Dicebox. As you might have noticed, I don't really have fill-ins anymore; my impetus for doing them was initially due to me being on a subscription site, Girlamatic and I figured paying customers deserved regularly scheduled entertainment. I continued to have them after leaving Girlamatic as that was the current expectation of a webcomics audience. Nowadays, with the general acceptance of RSS feeds and social media as aggregators, folks are more forgiving of a fumbled update (even if I am not). Also, I don't intend to take that much time off during parts anymore and I'm certainly not planning to have another kid.

Anyway, let's begin:

Click above image for slightly larger view.
Above is Stage 0, the rough sketch of an idea. This is a pretty elaborate rough sketch for me, but as this started life a cover concept for Book 1 and–though I liked the potential of the illustration– was iffy about it as a cover. So I sent it around to the usual suspects for feedback and got confirmation that it was a nice idea for a picture, but not a cover. It was during this process that I had the epiphany that it was actually the Asides cover spread in the print edition of Book 1 (silly me).

The entertaining white gap running vertically in the middle is me realizing the bed was too short and hence extending it.

Click above image for slightly larger view.
In Stage 1 you see the beginnings of final line art and initial color blocking. It's common for me to take the line art to a nearly finished point and then block in the basic color shapes so I can see how the basic composite is shaping up and to help me spot any drawing problems. The rougher line art indicates what wasn't working for me and where I started to extend it vertically.

Also, obviously, I've flopped the drawing. I actually liked it better this way from the get go and as I want to put the title and intro paragraph on the right hand page, it was a win-win situation.

This illustration is actually beyond this point in refinement, but not quite at Stage 2: Final line art and initial rendering. Which'll be my next entry here in a few days.


Prototypes of the Rafferty kerchief in Family Yellow and Auxiliary Red (not show: Boss White). Personal verdict? Pretty darn pleased. Looks pretty swell in action as well, as my lovely model Dylan Meconis demonstrates below.

Like the dice, these will be available only during pre-orders for Book 1 of Dicebox. Included in the "Swank" package on up, there is also an option to add the Rafferty Kerchief to any other package. Or buy an extra, whichever.

In the actual

I got a short test run of the custom Wander Dice, and I must say I am pleased. Naturally, I had to re-enact the patterns I had mocked up previously.
I find the detail on the Poppy particularly delightful.

As you all probably know by now, these are available only during pre-orders for Book 1 of Dicebox. But you probably didn't know that I have added an option to add these to any pre-order package. Ditto for the Rafferty Kercheif.

Rafferty Redux

Way back when doing Part 7 of Book 1, "Pots and Pans," I created a badging system for family organized factory workers known collectively as Sooners, specifically the Raffertys, Mare and her lot. I made a post about this badge–which takes the form of a head kerchief–in this journal, explaining the rudimentary code and inspiration for it. Here's my original design:

Simple, to the point, perfect for my needs. Until I decided to actually produce this sucker as a full size kerchief as part of my pre-order packages. Then I went to town:

You can click here for a much larger view of this design.

As I am using a process that allows it, I'm offering a choice of the three color variations, beyond Family Yellow seen above, there will Auxiliary Red and Boss White, seen below.

These will be 22 inches by 22 inches each, printed one-sided on organic cotton sateen with finished edges.

Them Bones

Here's a look at the design for the custom dice I am offering with some of the pre-order packages of Book 1 : Wander and only during the pre-order process. It'll be a set of 4, 2 of design A, one each of B and C.

My criteria for the design of this set was to keep the traditional dice pips there and readable while seeing what pictures I could make:

Next up: the fancifiying of the Rafferty kerchief for production.