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Saturday, March 29, 2014


I have made the determination to shift my attention to preparing the eBook for publication and distribution through this site.   As you can see below, I have produced a sample video, which I intend to include as part of the eBook.

The film below uses the artwork we produced for the Illustrated Storybook as a backdrop for the lyrics to the instrumental song. I feel as though this format works well as a sing-a-long product and so, I intend on producing such a film for each of the lyrical songs.  Now there are a total of seventy songs in the show, although that count includes the instrumental backdrops and scene change bridges, so there wont be seventy films to make, but there will be over forty.  I'd say that will keep me busy for a long time.

Of course the intention is to move this show into production as a legit stage production as soon as that is both possible and appropriate, but the truth of the matter is -  I have determined to continue producing the products that are ancillary to the stage show and feature film which I can produce in my studio and not to concern myself with pushing forward  as a live stage show until the resources to do so are fully available.

Of course the effort to make those resources continues, but the larger operations that fall into union operations impose parameters on a production that, if entered into prematurely, can impair the forward momentum (as a whole) if sufficient resources are not available to maintain consistent operations and growth.

So in the context of producing an end product that will sustain positive forward momentum, there are many aspects that can be drawn together, while remaining within the confines of the studio operations.  Hence, introduction into the market place of the larger product will be implemented in an appropriate fashion based on my immediate resources.

Should other organizations step up to be involved by providing additional resources, then the implementation may be accelerated and under the right circumstances that is the most desired route to hope for.

I have been working on this project since 1990. Sometimes I feel like I'm all Gnomed -out. Other times I'm very excited about the progress and depth of this project.

So ... onward and upward. AG

Saturday, March 1, 2014

Samples of The Illustrated Storybook

 For the sake of our partners who have had faith in the project 
by investing time, money and resources to help us prepare this material, 
and for the sake of those who have been considering being involved,
I am posting samples of the book product which is almost ready to go to press.

The Hard Cover Book will use a sleeve.

The images do not interpret as well as they actually print
as they are rather dark and not nearly as clear.

When the files were converted to a lower resolution JPG
for use here, a great deal of clarity was lost.

But they do  print wonderfully
 are quite and vibrant & readable

I will replace them when I can adjust the exposure
but these show the basic look.

Here is the Front Cover 

This is the 
Inside Front Cover Flap

I opted for a more artistic use of the text.

This flap describes the artists involved.

This is the Back Cover

I wonder if the back cover is busy,
but I do find that 
the variety
has the effect of
 being enthralling
as one studies it 
and this is something
which I think we want 
for the kids.

This is the 
Inside Back Cover Flap

While this flap give a brief history 
and defines some other 
aspects of the project.

And below are three pages from Volume One

These pages show the full bleed and trim marks
(in the form of a notch in each corner)

The background is reversed on the even pages, 
although it is not reversed here.

As you can see above,
artwork is interspersed within the text
on some pages.

While on other pages,
scenes have been composed 
within backgrounds.

There is a wide variety of 
page compositions

and the text uses 
a variety of sizes and shapes 

to emphasize the the inflections intended.

Collectable Trading Cards

Here is a glance at one of the prototype trading cards.
The design has advanced somewhat since this edition
but this is a copy I happened to have 
on hand at the moment.

The rear of the card will have pertinent information 
about the characters or whatever the image is
and I am thinking through a numbering system
to make them more collectable

As with everything else 
this is an ancillary market 
available for licensing

Gnome Gnog 
bubble gum?

Inter-active Storybook

Initial Discussion

An interesting concept came to me as I was working on the Layout for the Illustrated Storybook.  I am planning on advancing into creating a Powerpoint version of the Storybook, which as you can understand, has numerous applications for marketing the over all project.  However that leads me to want to create an edition of the storybook that will be designed for an iPad, or other hand-held devises of that nature.  Essentially, that means creating an App that will access the storybook electronically.  Well, since the plan is to move forward into an animated film, I think the interim stage of getting there will be to create an animated storybook. Of course the animations used for that storybook will be limited versions of what will be used in the animated film.

My plan has been to narrate the story, once the illustrated volume is completed. The text for this illustrated storybook is complete, however I am finding that I am altering the text to accommodate the variations on the illustrations, which I am creating in order that each page of the storybook has an illustration.  As it turns out, in order to have that many illustrations, I am dividing them up and using close-up, middle & long shots. This really expands the usability of the illustrations. I am also finding that I can create assorted body positions of the characters with photoshop, so this is leading me into the foundations of the animation. I have a program called Poser, but have not yet learned how to use it, so at some point that may come into play as well.

  Of course the narration of the existing text will be part of a companion CD with the music. I have had numerous requests to narrate this myself, being told that my voice inflection really brings it alive. So as soon as I am satisfied that the prepress publication mechanicals are right, then I will move into doing that narration.

  As it stands now Volume One has sixty pages, of what I expect to be around ninety, that are finished.  I may have said this before , however, Volume Two now has seventy-eight pages complete, which takes us up to scene five (of nineteen) in the Libretto.  Act One of the Libretto has nine scenes, so those seventy eight pages seem to represent about one half of Act One/Volume One. However, scene seven in the Libretto is the longest scene in the play and that may take up a bit more pages in the Illustrated Storybook. I have found that in the storybook, I have expanded upon certain portions of the story which are not revealed in the Libretto, for reasons that have to do with the limitations present on stage.

The approach I've taken in layout out the storybook is to include the lyrics from the Libretto as part of the Storybook text. Since the story on the stage is told largely in song. For the storybook, I have built a larger story around the one presented on-stage, meaning that I've expanded upon aspects of the story that cannot be presented on-stage due to time and spacial limitations. So the storybook is more extensive in that regard.

Some Thoughts about Production

As you may be aware, building a show and gathering the resources necessary to succeed as a theatrical production can be a complex endeavor. Even with 40 years of experience in theatre, it is a daunting task to move forward to do this.  So with that degree of complexity in coordinating the resources and personnel in mind, I have decided to continue with the development of other materials which will offer the greatest degree of support for the core product and keep us moving forward in the studio environment without excessive  external outlay.  My feeling is that I need to continue to move forward as much as possible internally before risking external activity which might cause undue strain to the overall operation and water down the market place impact.

Obviously, I need to get a product into the market place to develop a cash flow. But I want the most advantageous product that will require the least amount of outlay on my part. That leads me to consider the electronic medium.

What this is leading up to is this - We have a good amount of artwork, which is being adapted for a larger presentation of the story, there is more to be done in that regard, but the material we already have is sufficient to develop a solid structure for storytelling in various mediums. Although the hardcopy storybook is nearing completion, I would like to move into the digital medium - before I release the hardcopy storybook, or at the least simultaneous to that release. My feeling is that full revelation of the core material without deep saturation into an assortment of markets would be a mistake. So that is what I am striving for. Now I am completely willing to partner with other organizations to achieve that saturation, so long as those organizations are on-board with the overall marketing plan. That is yet to be seen, but for those who may be reading this and might be considering involvement, there is an overall game plan for market saturation that does not necessarily involve a flood of publicity to achieve that end. Certainly that kind of publicity is welcome at the appropriate time and as evidenced by other product that gained success by that method, but from my point of view, making those expenditures is most appropriate when the adjacent markets have sufficient inventory to meet the demand which will result from such publicity and marketing. So that being said, I am striving to set up those markets to meet that demand either internally or externally. Frankly I will continue to work internally in the absence of external impetus, but I am striving for a balance between the two.

The Electronic Medium

Now this  Electronic Storybook could possibly be interactive with links and such. I have not thought this entirely out yet, because what has to happen is that: this needs to be income producing and not just a free ride on the internet. So with that in mind, I would like to discuss this with an internet savvy partner who can assist in setting up the App and the sale of this electronic book as an online purchase. I want the book to be isolated to one devise and not be able to be copied or transferred between parties. So the person who becomes involved as a programmer needs to be able to do this. I am not currently able to do this, mainly because I do not have the time to learn a new trade such as this.

The other aspect of this is that the electronic book will contain the music from the show and animated clips in each scene.  So in essence this will be a merging of a limited animation of scenes with the illustrated storybook with narration, available on any hand held devise anywhere via the internet.

Any individuals or companies savvy to this who may like to be involved are invited to write to me to discuss this.