Friday, October 5, 2012

The return of the Grail Diary - work in progress

Henry Jones Sr's Grail Diary was the first book project I embarked on, back in 2006. I love Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade and the one prop that has captivated me ever since I first watched the movie was the diary in which Indy's father, Henry, chronicled his quest for the Holy Cup even before Indy was born. So I joined Club Obiwan (COW), the online forum dedicated to all things Indy and based on the tutorials and tips posted by the members there, as well as the aid of a member named Cokewithvanilla who had made a printable version of the diary, I started piecing my diary. This was a story diary, which contained the pages from the actual prop seen on screen as well as additional invented pages (mostly from the diary included with the Last Crusade computer game). This was my first foray in aging a book prop, from weathering the pages to the leather cover as well as the inserts. After I posted pics of my diary on COW and the RPF, I was contacted by several members who offered to buy my diary. That was when I started making them for sale.

In 2008, I had grown tired of the diary. I was only not quite satisfied with the original printed file since it had a number of spelling errors as well as misplaced entries. So I decided to stop making them, with a view of reworking the pages at a later date, specifically, when I have acquired some further skills with graphic editing software required to make and compile such pages.

It is now approaching the tail end of 2012 and I have decided to reacquaint myself with this old friend. But rather than make a story diary, I decided to make the Hero Prop version of the diary. A lot of info has come to light in recent years on the actual pages and their order so assisted by this info (which can be obtained in COW and sites like Zenseeker's, I began to compile the pages that would make up the signatures of the diary.

In 2006, I decided to go with the printable route and now in 2012, my decision stays. I'm under no illusion that I can hand write an entire diary; my handwriting is so fugly that the diary would turn out to be more that of Freddy Krueger rather than Henry Jones. So, using numerous reference pictures of the pages and illustrations, I worked up my pages in Adobe Illustrator, using a realistic handwriting font (but font nonetheless) and once done, I compiled them in Acrobat.

I printed out the pages on off-white/ivory 100gsm paper on a laser printer, cut them to size and folded them into signatures. Here are some pics:

I'll be weathering pages soon and after that its off to the binders!

Stay tuned.

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