I met Jane Fulton Alt on the last day of a photography festival in Holland in the summer of 2012. She told me she was working on a book version of The Burn, a body of work I was familiar with. A recent book offer started Jane thinking about how to navigate the process. That evening, we sat down to talk about the broad brush strokes of how to get started.
One of the crucial parts of making a photobook is to carefully consider each decision that needs to be made. Each and every aspect of bookmaking, (including but not limited to the design, layout, materials, binding, and font) needs to support the overall concept of the book. Arriving at those decisions is challenging. Some options work well, and others don’t, given the desired book at hand.
A few months later, I received a call from Jane who said that her designer had produced a layout that distracted from the photographs. It was clear to her that they did not understand the work. With the help of electronic and paper dummies, Jane and I arrived at a layout that was harmonious to her vision.
The result, published by Kehrer Verlag in the fall of 2013, beautifully reflects Jane’s ideas, creating the loving tribute to her sister it was always intended to be.
“Book making can be a daunting process. My consultation with Jörg was hugely informative. His guidance, knowledge and expertise were critical to the creation of The Burn. What was so incredibly helpful to me was his suggestion to clearly articulate my vision for the book, what I wanted it to say. Every decision made needed to support that vision. Over time I realized I wanted it to be a quiet meditation, and let the images speak for themselves. Jörg also had many ideas for raising funds to cover the costs of producing a book.” – Jane Fulton Alt