The Little Things

We are neck deep in the final editing process of Draw the Human Body: Organs. I’m (Glen, a.k.a. The Husband) the primary author for this one, but it is Kristin who has the artistic eye and has been offering opinions and ideas along the way. Her Draw the USA book and its success, has been the inspiration for most of our drawing books. 

Draw the Human Body: Organs by Draeger. Spleen, page 77

The joke is not correct

Red Blood Cells?

It’s the little things that will get you. I had a cartoon with the spleen saying: “Today I’m making red and white blood cells and putting them on platelet.”

But here’s the thing: Spleens don’t make red blood cells, your bone marrow does. I’ve looked at that cartoon a lot while making it, writing it and editing it. It was only the other day, for whatever reason, that it occurred to me it was incorrect. 

So that has now been changed to: “Today I’m making white blood cells and putting them on platelet.” You can stop laughing now…I know it’s difficult.

Overpowering Cartoons

Draw the Human Body: Organs. Pancreas. Don Quixote and Sancho Panza and more.

Cartoons are too big!

Sometimes during this whole process of creating books you can look at the layout either in the book or on the cover and something just doesn’t feel right, but you can’t figure out why. I sometimes stare at a page or cover and I just don’t like it, but I don’t know why I don’t like it except to say I don’t like it.

The interior of our new book had that feel and Kristin figured it out: The cartoons were too big.

Bingo! This is a drawing book, but the cartoons on the pages were overpowering the the drawing. I’ve gone back through and reduced the size on all of them and moved most of them to the bottom of the page. This has made a huge difference in the print outs we’ve been looking at. Our proof with the newly sized cartoons arrives this week.

Busy Footers

Draw the Human Body: Organs by Draeger. Spleen, page 85

Those bottom images have been replaced.

In our map books we have a repeating footer on all the pages and it works well. For some reason it didn’t look right in this book with the different organs repeated at the bottom across all the pages. So then we tried repeating the same organs or cartoons across the footer, with talk bubbles, but this just looked way too busy.

So now we have one element in the footer with a talk bubble. It might be an organ dispensing more information about itself, a cartoon character making a joke or the Mona Lisa explaining that Leonardo would never draw this way. It’s looks better in our printouts and on a computer screen, but we’ll see if the proof coming this week (our 5th) confirms that.

Self-Editing

One of the hardest things when creating books (and we don’t always get it right) is self-editing. You can spend hours on something and because you have the time invested you want it to work. It was a great idea at the time! You want it to work so much that you become attached to it even though in the back of your mind you know it’s not working.

Trash it.

This entire book started on a completely different premise. We thought we’d have students drawing each organ within a human body and adding organs to this one body along the way. I spent days and days creating the instructions for this scenario. I completed all of them.

Then we started thinking…you know…maybe one organ at a time with a lot more detail, would be the best way to go. The new idea really makes sense…but all that work. Oh well.  So that’s what we did. All those hours, all those days on the original idea…gone.  Was it a waste of time? No.

Sometimes the only way a good idea can emerge is through the process of creating a bad one.

When the book is done after all these big and little decisions you’ll have the opportunity (assuming you buy it) to determine if we got it right.

July 2024

We started the book in November of 2023. We hoped for a June 2024 launch date, but that is not going to happen. We’re fairly confident that the July launch will happen. We hope you’re looking forward to it. We will have a free book contest for this one, though it may be a little different than past contests.

We’ll keep you posted.

Some of our newest pages

 

2 Comments

Sarah DiFrischia

I want to pre-order! Since this is curriculum-buying season for homeschoolers, why don’t you have a pre-order sale? I’d certainly buy one! (Especially for people who love your Draw the World Series-they’re already fans of your material.)

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ARTK12

Well…we just hadn’t thought about it. We’ll think about it, sounds like a good idea.

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