Creating Perfectly Perfect Books for Musicians

Whatever it takes to get it right.

The most exhilarating and nerve wracking part of putting my Sydney Opera House book together is making the small changes required to make it perfect. It’s conceptually fixed. The writing is done, corrected, and the layout designed. The last part of the puzzle, next week, is to select the final Reg Mombassa images (now that the layout is fixed).


The hard part of a first project is that you have to bring it to life in order to finesse its elements. Commercial printing is unforgiving. Being involved with projects in a way that allows artists to economically make tests is perhaps the most important part of the process. And as I’ve discovered, unless you give yourself over to it fully, it’s never going to come to life.


It’s also necessary to consider these incremental changes as refinements not failures along the way. Nothing changes the integrity of the project but it’s necessary to show people the project in its early forms in order to garner the support to bring it properly to life. In the photo you see the evolution of the cover of the book.

There’s also the necessary immersion in a project. It can’t be done carefully or part time. The true insights come through giving a project your full attention. And making each step of the project affordable is absolutely necessary. I’m in constant awe of the bands whose music I listen to on Bandcamp. You all have such a strong sense of your character and the world your music resides in. Working through various test models to bring that fully to life must be possible.




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