After reworking the files a bit, a master die was carved in precise detail into a brass plate on a CNC-machine, a ten-hour process for each design. Each master die was then painstakingly polished and inspected, and imperfections were cleaned up by hand.
When the masters were finished, “counters” were made by pressing the master into hot resin. The counter and master were then used to make the duplicates that were necessary to stamp the artwork on multiple locations on the press sheet.
While the dies were being made, they ordered some tests to determine the ink/varnish balance to best bring out the subtleties of the 3-D shapes. Too much of a tint would overwhelm the virtually “blind” emboss that we were after. Once they got on press, they found their tested balance was too strong, so their pressman suggested using the varnish without a tint. He was right, it was perfect. Pressmen know their stuff!
After a few tweaks to the dies (and biting our nails during the ensuing 10-hour waits) the varnish-printed cover stock was delivered to the embosser, the dies were carefully aligned to the varnished areas, and the sheets were stamped.
Meanwhile, ruled body pages were printed on Finch Fine 70#T “Soft White” in gray with double top rule matched to the cover colors. Finally the books were bound with gold staples.
The final result is wonderfully subtle at first glance, but a close look reveals a deeper complexity. That sounds like a pretty over-the-top way to describe pocket memo books, but we bet you’ll agree when they’re in your hands.
- 01. Proudly printed by the good people of Service Graphics, Inc., Oakbrook Terrace, Ill.
- 02. Cover: French Dur-O-Tone 80#C "Packing Brown Wrap," with a thick, brute force, 1-color application of "Dachshund Nose" black soy-based Toyo ink.
- 03. Innards: Finch Paper Opaque Smooth 60#T "Bright White," with a fine, 1-color application of "Double Knee Duck Canvas" light brown soy-based Toyo ink.
- 04. Cover printed on a Mitsubishi Diamond Series 40" 6-color printing press.
- 05. Innards printed on a Miller TP104 28" × 40" 2-color printing press.
- 06. Bound by a Heidelberg ST350 "Stitchmaster" 8-pocket saddle stitcher, with appreciation to Samuel Slocum, George W. McGill, and William J. Brown, the "Founding Fathers of the Staple."
- 07. Corners precisely rounded to 3/9" (9.5mm) by a CRC round-corner machine.
- 08. Graph grid: 3/16" × 3/16" (4.7mm × 4.7mm). Ruled lines: 1/4" (6.4mm). Crisp plain paper. 48 Pages.
- 09. Memo book dimensions are 3-1/2" × 5-1/2" (89mm x 140mm).
- 10. FIELD NOTES uses only the Futura typeface family (Paul Renner, 1927) in its materials.
- 11. All FIELD NOTES memo books are printed and manufactured in the U.S.A.
- 12. UPC: Graph FN-01 858493003004, Ruled FN-02 858493003011, Plain FN-03 858493003028, Mixed FN-04 858493003035