12072016 The ARB 2011 Diary

When I was working in the bespoke Diary industry, it was a very tough struggle for me. I wanted to challenge myself in Sales, something which is terrifying for a technical person like me. But If I kept on believing the fact that it is very difficult for technicals to shift into the sales, I would not have done it. I just want to test myself to see how it feels like, to work in a job that has no manuals or a definite answers. But darn it, it was like walking in the goddam Park from Hell, with every step full of thorns and shifting landmines. So much for braving into the unknown. But I did learn a lot of things, some which is still puzzling me until today. And some that scarred me into buffoonism. In summary, I just can't tell a good lie or make stuff up that the customer wants to hear.

One of the best things I got out from these traumatic experiences, apart from customer praises were the Diaries or Notebooks. These Diaries are beautiful works of Art and I have never seen books in this light before. From the design of the PU to the embossing to the paper to the page design, holding it in my hands was bliss. The journey of the Diary was long but what I loved was the fact that I am involved in most stages of the design process. From the selection of the cover to it's design, to it's colourful front pages till to the actual diary itself, I really enjoyed it. That is, if the customer signed the dotted line in the first place.

Anyway, it's part of my f*cked experience now, which I shall lock it up as "Do not enter and Salesmen are still scum". Throw away the key? The darn thing sholdn't even exist in the first place. So, with me not having a care anymore, its time that I start to use one instead of letting it rot (really). This is the Amanah Raya Bhd's 2011 Diary which coincides with their 90th Anniversary. It took me too many trips to see the decision maker who is always not in but once I got them interested with the cover material, the process was much easier.

I remember going there many times with the material swatch file to get her to agree on the specific Bluish hue, fighting internally with another colleague to get them reserved once the customer signed it. Plus, the correct stamping logo which had to right before going off to be made.

This was also one of the times I had to learn how to make sure the Artwork looks good since it was printed on a yellow background.

I had to convince her the yellow paper looks warmer and welcoming within the folds of the blue covers instead of the clinical white. As for the page design, I just left it with simple grey thin lines and nothing more because sometimes, if you put too much sugar on a dessert, it would taste like crap. So, no Mondays, Tuesdays, etc. tick-offs, no fancy quotes or wavy lines. Just, simple, lines, and that is all you'll need without any distractions.

The yellowish/brown Calendar cum Bookmark was inserted into a special glued-on envelope. I loved this design because although we only used one colour, the combination made the simple calendar a joy to hold and look at. Maybe because it reminds me of vanilla and cookies....

When I looked back, it was the creative process which drove me on while coming to terms that working in Sales is like holding a ball full of holes with firecrackers burning inside; you just won't know which hole it will come out and burn you.

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