Many, many months ago, some friends at Bookblock Original reached out to us about their new idea and product. This was even before their kickstarter campaign. We’ve done a lot of print work before, making the ANALOG notebooks, calendars, pocket guides, boarding passes and more. So when they contacted us and asked if we’d be interested in creating a custom notebook before anyone else, we jumped at the chance.
This was several months ago now, we were in a Black and White phase apparently. Going through the archive of pictures we had taken which would be interesting, we settled on this photo of the Shibuya crossing. It was a full color photo that was probably pretty busy, so we converted it to Black and White, tweaked the contrast a bit to make it pop in all the right places. Since we knew what, where and when this was taken, we did a bit of searching around on Wikipedia for Shibuya and found the Kanji characters, 渋谷区. We added those to the spine of the book along with the logo for Shibuya, Tokyo area near the top.
When ever you print anything, there is always some tolerances. You always have more picture around the edge than you need because when it gets cropped it will inevitably be off by a bit. Around the edges, this doesn’t mater, but when something needs to be centred, like the spine, a few millimetres starts to make a big difference. The Bookblock Originals did a great job and things are centred perfectly on the spin!
These notebooks are the larger format A5 style. Originally, we moved away from larger notebooks to something that would fit in your pocket, the 9x14cm size. These were our ubiquitous capture devices. The downsides started to appear when they would get too crumpled, bent and ripped apart via use. It was hard to pull something like that out in a meeting to take notes. We also bought an iPad Mini for the office. These Bookblock notebooks are just about the same size as the tablet, making them perfect companions in a travel bag when going to meetings, events and other activities.
Now we don’t worry about taking out our custom made notebook in front of others. It is pretty slick, branded and because of the hard cover, always in better shape than any paper notebook we’ve had in our pockets.