A few months ago, I embarked on an adventure to expand my design horizons. I took a HUGE leap and submitted a bid for the opportunity to design a children’s activity book. While I had never designed an activity book, I knew that my background as an Instructional Designer, paired with my graphic design skills, would make this the perfect project for me. Happily the organization thought so too and, I was selected to design the activity book and began working on it in early April. Just last week, I received my printed copies of Fuel Your Future Ethanol Activity Book! Take a peek:
Here are a few random pages from the inside:
I can't begin to tell you how amazing it is to have something you created printed for distribution (20,000 copies), plus the option to download from their website! As I held it in my hands, it really hit me, "WOW...I made this!" It's sort of surreal. What's even more amazing is that numerous children will be educated by the piece I created.
ABOUT THE BOOK | The book was created as an educational and promotional piece for the Renewable Fuels Association. It was written and designed with a wide age-range in mind and has activities suitable for most ages. If you'd like to see more of the booklet, or if you’d like to print a copy of your own, you can download a PDF of the activity book here.
THE PROCESS | With direction from the RFA, I began the process of developing the storyline. It involved a lot of research and organization – I had to make certain I included they key topics the RFA had designated, as well as create additional content to fill in the book.
After the storyline was written and approved, I began to lay out the design in Illustrator. Once I had an idea of how much space I had on each page, I began to determine which activities would be most suitable for the content. From there, I sketched out images and ideas, which were then created digitally and placed into the final design of the activity book.
LESSONS LEARNED | Probably the biggest lesson I learned, is that I’m VERY slow at taking my paper sketches and interpreting them digitally in Illustrator. Like, PAINFULLY slow. Very fortunately for me, Nate was there to help me out with all of his crazy, fast computer skills. He took my paper sketches and ideas and recreated them digitally so I could place them in my Illustrator artboards. Without him, I’m not certain I could have met the deadline for the project. Another thing I discovered throughout the process - Nate and I make a pretty good design duo!
THANK YOU | Thank you to the Renewable Fuels Association for the opportunity to design this book. And thank you to Nate for all of you support and assistance.
So that's it! My first big freelance job. Don't forget to grab yourself a copy here!