Design Ideas

The first idea that I had was to print the dissertation as a scroll, old paper or stylised to look old paper, handles etc.

Since then I have had the idea to print my dissertation as a manga, keeping the scroll idea as a back up.

I have looked into single issue manga that have been printed by freelance illustrators and sent e-mails to them asking for advice and possible places that I could get my dissertation printed.

These are a few specifications for a type of paper I have come across during my research into paper for manga, taken from

This paper is specially designed for Manga drawing purposes.

 Very smooth surface/texture paper.

Pen nibs do not tend to ‘bite’, minimizes the tendency of paper surface becoming ‘scruffy’ or broken when using an eraser.

 Ink does not bleed.

 Easy to draw with dip/nib pen and fountain pen.

 Light blue millimetre gauge printed on each sheet assists layout of work as well as defining printing cut-off area.  The light blue does not reproduce on the final print during black and white printing processes.

 135kg thickness paper holds colour ink well (This weight is the most popular paper for Manga Artists in Japan).

 Non fluorescent paper which is gentle on your eyes.

Information and advice that I have read while researching has given me a little insight into the do’s and do not’s of designing and printing manga.

The above links are a couple of websites that have given me such advice.

One of the freelance illustrators that I mentioned earlier is:

Lincy Chan

Freelance Illustrator

During the stages design stage an idea hit me, possibly I could enthuse a western style with the manga style that I was originally intending. So the right to left layout that manga applies I would lose which would make sense because the target audience isn’t only Japanese animation enthusiasts. So I looked into other ways of printing and eventually stumbled onto Blurb, the conventional way for a student to print their dissertation that isn’t really focusing on the actual design of it. This I thought would add a kind of friendliness to the aesthetics of the final product as it wouldn’t at first glance look complicated which was one of my main concerns with the original manga layout design, hopefully making people that aren’t necessarily drawn towards the dissertation because of the content at least take a look at it and actually seriously consider giving it a read.

While thinking about how I have changed the design of the dissertation to cater for the non Japanese animation lovers, I thought that possibly something else was needed to add that extra factor of interest that would be needed for people to take notice of the dissertation. So I started looking into objects that could come with the dissertation, the sort of free bees that draw people to buy things everyday. The sort of items that I limited myself to were simply items that were interesting, but also relevant to the dissertation, here are links to a few things that caught my eye:

Eventually I decided to go with a traditional Japanese lantern that had a dragon illustration on in the technique of the old painted scrolls that are covered in the dissertation, an image will be posted as soon as they arrive.


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