My first “real” layout project has finally wrapped up and is now available for public consumption.  This is a great tabletop RPG written by my friends at Machine Age Productions.  It also includes art by Jenna Fowler and Ruth Lampi.

This book was a huge learning experience as I worked on it from start to finish and designed everything from scratch.  Amaranthine forced me to learn the “unfun” side of the print world, like adjusting color profiles for the printer and working around ancient standards like PDF-X/2001.  Fortunately, everything turned out well and we were able to show off the book at GenCon.

For the graphics, David and Mena (the developers and authors) wanted an art nouveau slash persian vibe, and asked that the artists and I try to stick to a specific color palette to achieve a homogenized feel to the book.  I built the page backgrounds and other graphical elements in PS, then used ID for the layout, and finally Acrobat for some final polishing.  I am a huge advocate of electronic print, so I used the opportunity to take advantage of the medium where I could.  The PDF release is littered with clickable links, in addition to a full set of bookmarks.  For the physical book, I used color coded tabs along the side of the pages to make quick navigation easier.  I adapted this to the electronic release by color coding the TOC and bookmark table.

Lastly, I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention the very amiable Adam Jury, who provided me with some useful pointers during development.

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