Monday, June 18, 2012
PQ Blackwell Launches MILK Tailor Made Books
Today is a very big day for PQ Blackwell. The New Zealand-based creator of internationally best-selling books has launched MILK Tailor Made Books, an ambitious new project founded on a website www.milkbooks.com that will enable people anywhere in the world to create their own beautiful tailor made books.
I had lunch with PQ’s Geoff Blackwell and Ruth Hobday recently and they told me that this new iteration of their famous MILK brand has taken over two years to develop and that it is the biggest and most ambitious project of their careers to date. Quite a statement given some of their previous projects.
Blackwell, who has published books with photographers and luminaries such as Nelson Mandela and Desmond Tutu, says inspiration for MILK Tailor Made Books came to him when his father turned seventy. “To mark my Dad’s special day, my family and I decided to make him a book that combined our favourite photographs of moments shared together, and then each of us – right down to the youngest grandchild – wrote him a message telling him how much we love him. It was a beautiful little book and giving it to him was a moment none of us will forget.”
The experience made such an impact on Blackwell that he, Hobday, and their team of editors and designers, have spent over two years perfecting a website that they believe will not only enable ordinary people to make their own extraordinary books but will also introduce new technology and unprecedented quality standards to the photo book industry.
I have had an initial play around on the website and I am impressed. Features that make it unique include the collaborator tool that allows people to invite others to edit their book, and the ability to add video to digital versions that can be shared online. The result is an exquisitely produced object featuring designer fabric binding and high quality art paper that reflects the high production values that PQ Blackwell is known for.
Blackwell, who plans to launch the website around the world in 25 languages over the next two years, says “MILK Tailor Made Books is founded on a simple love for making beautiful books, and a belief that every life has defining moments that are worth recording and celebrating,”
Head honchos Ruth Hobday and Geoff Blackwell at PQ Blackwell's Auckland office.