I am shaping the youth of tomorrow

January 14, 2010


Once again, It???s a Baby Gazelle has come up in conversation. Really. For those of you who don???t know, I am a graphic designer and author. My writing audience is that discerning group in the U.S. who is being forced to learn to read words in books when they are six or seven years old.

The publisher who is our main client puts out books in series of six or more???eight or twelve sometimes, 26 if it???s, say, the alphabet. It???s the Alphabet series consumed the previous year of my life. But they???re damned cute books.

It???s a Baby Gazelle came in the second baby animals series, ???Baby African Animals.??? When I concepted and designed the first series, ???Baby Mammals??? (basically, middle Northern Hemisphere animals), I came up with a writing template and a design format with the intention of banging out more and more of the same, because at the time we were advised ???more animals, more animals!???

The graphic design elements were based on the flora of the physical environment in question. ???Baby Mammals??? (blue) was deciduous leaves, rivers, and dirt. ???Baby African Animals??? (orange) was safari???ambiguous animal spots, sand, acacia trees, and grass. ???Baby Australian Animals??? (ochre) was the outback???the red of Ayers Rock/Uluru, eucalyptus leaves, and the golden wattle. Sure, it looks like awesome design, but there???s actually purpose behind the elements.

You can???t see the interior designs here (though those of you in the know will eventually get a secret URL sometime before the next millennium) but they were every bit as intentional as the cover designs. And I had several more environs envisioned for addtional series???arctic, tropical, desert, underwater, so on and so forth. It???s too bad for us that the publisher has not, as yet, given the go-ahead for more of these series. The format is established and we can bang them out and make money on them. I was looking forward to arctic in particular.

Oh well, I???m not in charge.

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