Self publishing a Photography Book - Hampstead Heath

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Self publishing a Photography Book

I first met with Matthew Maran at the London Book Fair in April 2015. His self-published first book was a largely solo effort, managed without any publishing support. Second time around he wanted to work with a production specialist. I provided specialist knowledge and experience about the process and shared a lot of the workload. This allowed him more time to accommodate other work alongside the progress of the book.

As a first stage I collated all Matt’s ideas and preferences on the look and feel he wanted and the number of copies he was comfortable trying to sell. I developed a full book production specification and costed it with printers I knew would be a good fit for a bespoke book of this type. Using my knowledge of print suppliers I ensured we were able to produce something of the quality and at the price that was required. I also put together a list of other likely costs for a project of this kind. We looked at the wholesale and retail outlets Matt had in mind and calculated the revenue and profit figures based on this model. This enabled us to arrive at a specification which was affordable and which we felt book-buyers would consider desirable and value for money.

Matt raised funds through a successful campaign on the crowdfunding website Kickstarter and his fundraising target was arrived at from this initial stage of development and number-crunching. You can read my blog post about the crowdfunding campaign in the blog section of my site but clicking here.

Having done this groundwork we could get underway with preparing the page layouts and the images in the best way to get the highest quality result in print. As well as this input on quality assurance I managed the process to ensure things ran as smoothly as possible. Matt was very hands-on with the design and we worked together closely throughout the process. I gave him technical guidelines to follow and updated the repro house and printer on our progress and invited their specialist input where necessary. In April 2016 Matt and I went to the repro company in London to check the colour proofs and made some final adjustments before everything went off to the printer in Italy.

For the final stage of checking and fine-tuning (and because it’s really exciting and fun!) we also both went to Italy to see the book on press. I worked closely with the printer to make all the necessary delivery arrangements and I’m pleased to say the books arrived at their destinations bang on time.

I’d like to say a massive thank you to David Brimble. David … has worked on this project over the last year, taking care of everything from creating schedules, analysing the costs, to sourcing the printer to helping me decide on the specification of the book. He has extensive experience working in publishing so if anyone out there is looking to take on their own book project, look no further

Thanks to Matt for permission to use the above photographs of the finished product.

The book is available to buy online by clicking here (please note, this is an affiliate link. Your browser should open the product page in a separate tab)


  • Published June 2016, by Matthew Maran / Hemisphere Publishing
  • Development and costing of specification, identification of appropriate repro and print suppliers
  • Overall project management including print buying, purchasing, scheduling, logistics
  • Provided budget for Kickstarter crowdfunding campaign plus overall Profit & Loss analysis
  • Colour-managed image reproduction and proofing to FOGRA standards
  • Attended the printer to pass the sheets on press
  • Editorial and Proof-reading support and management
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