Volume is a publishing platform for illustrated books. Volume’s ambition is to connect producers of visual editions and works to highly engaged audiences of creative culture through exciting original materials, beautiful book objects and new channels of distribution.
Volume encourages ideas and proposals for illustrated books for all creative fields, from design to architecture, from typography to graphics, from fashion to photography, from popular culture to video games. We offer our creators the support and guidance necessary to enable innovative and atypical publications of exceptional quality.
What is a Volume book?
Unlike most other crowdfunding sites, which offer neither selection criteria nor support for projects, Volume is a curated platform, selecting its projects based on a range of considerations:
- Is the concept truly original?
- Does the creator already have an audience engaged with his/her work or activities?
- Is the creator willing to work with Volume to seek and connect with audiences, known and unknown, through energetic outreach?
- Does the subject hold interest for a global market, or is its target audience likely to be a highly focused set of super fans?
- Does the project offer opportunities to rethink what an illustrated book can be, in terms of production, design, production and customisation?
What is the process?
The process for starting a conversation with Volume is simple: either contact us directly, or submit your proposal using our simple form here; there are no fixed rules for proposals, but a couple of things are worth bearing in mind:
- How does the nature and organization of the content fit to the book’s format and production specification?
- Who is the intended audience, how will they find out about the book, and what will they expect to see – and how much will be willing to pay – when they do find out about it.
Who are Volume?
Volume was founded in 2017 by Lucas Dietrich – international publishing director for Thames & Hudson with over 20 years’ experience in illustrated book publishing, and Darren Wall – a publisher and art director with extensive experience in independent crowdfunded publishing.
Their ambition is to create a curated space for innovative illustrated book publishing, untethered from the demands and limitations of the traditional publishing model. Powered by international art publisher Thames & Hudson, Volume looks to the future of publishing but is founded on seven decades of editorial insight, production expertise and unparalleled global distribution.
What does Volume do?
If it looks as though a project is right for Volume, Volume offers direction and insight according to the creator’s need for each project:
- Editorial consultation and insight based on decades of specialist and illustrated-book publishing experience.
- Design advice, art direction, graphic design: some creators have specific thoughts on how the book should look,
others might seek guidance on anything from typography to picture editing.
- Volume’s knowledge and ability to find the right concept are based on decades of experience working with many of the world’s leading book designers and art directors.
- Production expertise: Some projects may come to Volume ready to print, others may need the full range of services provided by a publisher’s production department, from paper selection and special processes, from reprographics to printing, to shipping and customs clearance. Volume can handle every facet of the complex production process.
- Sales: One of Volume’s core features is connecting books to readers before they have been produced, whether through crowdfunding or preorders. But that is only half the story: Volume is backed and distributed by Thames & Hudson, the world’s leading art-book publisher, whose unparalleled international sales and distribution network has been established over decades.
- In addition to books sold directly through the Volume platform, publications can therefore be made available through bookshops and specialist outlets, from Europe to the Middle East, from the United States to Asia.
Once the creator and Volume have agreed to proceed with the project, and depending on how far the creator’s project has been developed, Volume will work with the creator to define or refine all the costs related to the book – from content clearence to printing and binding – to establish a budget for the book. This figure or some portion of it might serve as a funding target, which Volume and the creator will seek to raise through their respective channels.
Although Volume would expect creators to drive the project’s campaign through their own networks and social media channels, Volume also supports each project campaign through its own marketing initiatives and crossmarketing with similar projects on the Volume platform. Even if a project does not, after a period of time, reach its intended goal, Volume will still consider whether, perhaps with further support from Thames & Hudson, the project might be viable.
(If you are a publishing company looking to fund your books with Volume, you can review our guide here.)