I have been working on a personal project for the past few weeks, designing, laying out, and printing my grandmother's memoirs. She passed away in 2009, and left behind a manuscript of her life story. She had an interesting life, living through the Depression, working for the war effort in Washington, DC, raising five kids and traveling all over the country and the world. She also writes about her parents' and grandparents' lives in the late 19th century as farming families of French Canadian descent.
The cover is a picture of my grandma standing in Lake Champlain, which is near where she grew up in Whitehall, New York. I chose this as the cover image because the landscape of upstate New York hugely shaped her life.
I used Adobe Illustrator to make it look as if the landscape wraps around the back of the book as well.
It was quite a big project to layout the interior of a 126-page book, but a great way to become really proficient working with InDesign.
The book also has about a dozen images, which had to be scanned, edited in Photoshop, and put in the book using InDesign.
I also created a family tree for the back of the book, and a map illustration for the beginning highlighting all the places she lived.
I printed the book using Blurb.com, and am somewhat happy with the results, although I chose the cheaper paper option and probably shouldn't have. Anyway, I am happy to have a printed version of Grandma Marie's life story, and am sure it will be treasured in my family for many generations to come.
If you're interested, a copy of the book can be purchased here.