How do I make a really big book?
December 3, 2007 6:09 AM   Subscribe

I want to take a children's book and make a really big copy of it. What's the best way?

What I'd like to end up with is a book about 2 or 3 feet high and about 6 or 7 pages long. I haven't decided which book yet but am really just trying to figure out the best way to do this on the cheap.

I thought I'd get some big cardboard, take digital photos of book pages, blow them up really big and then split the images into, say, six A4 sized images so I can mount them on the cardboard. Is this the best way to do it and if so, what software can I use to blow the image up while retaining quality and how do I then split up the image?

Also wondering best way to bind the book and whether I can laminate pages this big so I can protect the finished goods. Thanks!
posted by gfrobe to Media & Arts (14 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Scan the images, take the scanned files to Kinko's or wherever, and have them printed on poster-sized paper? They can also laminate them.

I'm pretty sure, though, that at Kinko's at least, they will be very concerned that you have proper copyright clearance for this project.
posted by DarlingBri at 6:36 AM on December 3, 2007

That is all basic Photoshop work. But like DarlingBri points out, the problem is that companies (and some individuals - like myself ) would be reluctant to help you, because of the copyright issue. Unless the book is out of copyright, you really have a problem in copying the entire book without permission.
posted by R. Mutt at 6:49 AM on December 3, 2007

Response by poster: I thought of that but each print is about £20 here in UK. For a 7 page book that's £140, before mounting and binding, which is more than I wanted to spend.
posted by gfrobe at 6:56 AM on December 3, 2007

Response by poster: Point taken. I wouldn't be copying an entire book though but only 6 or 7 pages select pages. That is, I'd be making a condensed version of a book for reading to a small group of toddlers.
posted by gfrobe at 8:00 AM on December 3, 2007

Taking pictures is going to result in horrible, inconsistent quality. Scan them. I doubt a letter sized page will look blown up to 2-3 feet.. (9x bigger?), but it will come out better than using a camera.
posted by mphuie at 9:29 AM on December 3, 2007

If it's a Disney book, don't bother. Kinko's won't touch it. I used to work there and they live in constant fear of multi-million dollar lawsuits being brought by Disney.
posted by jeffamaphone at 10:35 AM on December 3, 2007

If you're presenting it to a large group of small children who will be sitting at a distance, image quality probably isn't a huge concern.

Do you want color or b&w? Kinko's can make B&W copies up to 18" x 36" quite easily on the Oce.
posted by jeffamaphone at 10:37 AM on December 3, 2007

If you end up having major copyright issues, what about scanning the pages and then projecting them? You could make a Powerpoint presentation of it, or go the old-fashioned way and make actual slides.
posted by radioamy at 11:55 AM on December 3, 2007

I saw a play at the Eric Carle Museum in which one of the props was a giant book made out of fabric. It hung on the wall with grommets so that you could turn the pages, and they would stay open. You could iron-on transfer your images and text or project the images onto the fabric then trace them with fabric markers.
posted by coevals at 12:39 PM on December 3, 2007

Response by poster: If copyright is really that big of an issue I don't even really need the text. It's really more about having a nice big book with giant pictures in it. The person reading it can be off to the side reading a regular sized copy to the group. I just really want the kids to be able to sit on the floor, up close, and see the pictures. I'm also looking for color pictures.

Scanning seems like the way to go so I will do that. I thought I had read something recently about a way to blow up pictures significantly without losing much quality. That's what I'm looking for. Also a way to split the images.

Interesting idea coevals and thanks for that. However, I need a book that is able to stand up on the floor.
posted by gfrobe at 1:04 PM on December 3, 2007

I would check the company that makes the book to see if they already sell it in big book form. I know Scholastic has books like that, as well as other companies.

You might also want to Google Big Book Easel as an option if this is going to be a common practice for you!

Lamination: I don't think it would be a problem at all. Our school laminates posters and posterboard regularly.
posted by aetg at 3:49 PM on December 3, 2007

Best answer: From a scan of the pages, Posteriza will do what you want done.
posted by aeschenkarnos at 3:54 PM on December 3, 2007

Response by poster: That Posteriza works great aeschenkarnos. Thanks!
posted by gfrobe at 4:59 AM on December 4, 2007

If you have a document camera attached to a digital projector, you could project the pictures onto a screen.
posted by tamitang at 7:25 PM on December 4, 2007

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