I recently sold some tumble-polished fossil worm cast stones to a Rock Shop. I thought I would provide the Shop with a photo-book about the stones so that customers would have a bit of background about them.
I have produced photo-books before, using a New Zealand-based online site, about holidays and overseas trips. I have also done some calendars through this site. Its products are quite good when working with photos but I sometimes struggle when text is involved – it can be tricky to place text correctly on a page. I chose to put together a 20 page book, 20 cms wide and 20 cms high, small enough to fit on a shop shelf but large enough for decent-sized photos.
The other tricky part of using an online site is getting the brightness of the photos right. How good a photo looks on a laptop screen depends on how tilted the screen is. I have learned to order an initial copy of a calendar or photo-book and check the photo quality and text placement before finalising a project.
The following are the front cover and first three pages of “The Trace Fossil Stones of Gemstone Beach”. The “Introduction” is important for such a book, giving the reader an immediate idea about the topic but also intriguing them to want to know more.
There are four later pages on which text is provided in the book. The first (page 3) is a quote from Geoff Chapple’s book “Terrain: Travels Through a Deep Landscape” about the worm trace fossils at Tihaka, near Gemstone Beach. This provides verification for the nature and age of the trace fossils. Secondly, on page 5 is an introduction to “Trace Fossils” as one type of fossil, supported by photos providing the broader context of marine trace fossils in New Zealand. Thirdly, on page 6 is a brief reference to the diversity of the trace fossils in Gemstone Beach stones. Fourthly, page 13 contains a brief description of rotary tumble polishing.
One of the key aims of the book is to show photos of the great diversity of trace fossil stones from Gemstone Beach. Another is to provide an appreciation of the beach on which they were found.
Given that the book promotes a certain type of stone that I have tumble-polished, I decided to include other examples of my tumble-polished stones from different places: Gemstone Beach, Birdlings Flat and Riverton. The book finishes with some information on TumbleStone Blog – in case someone wants more information about trace fossil stones – and a list of the sources of information used.
I have done one other photo-book on stones and am thinking of a couple more. But they take time and patience, and I am intending to undertake another stone collection trip to the South Island soon.