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A deluxe hardcover art book showcasing the life and career of one of the world’s most unique and prolific illustrators – Ken Dallison
A deluxe hardcover art book showcasing the life and career of one of the world’s most unique and prolific illustrators – Ken Dallison
A deluxe hardcover art book showcasing the life and career of one of the world’s most unique and prolific illustrators – Ken Dallison
303 backers pledged CA$ 32,050 to help bring this project to life.

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Ken Dallison – A Life in Illustration

CA$ 32,050

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Today’s Inspiration Press is back with another exciting project! Ken Dallison – A Life in Illustration will be another luxurious and thoughtfully assembled collection of illustration artwork from one of the world’s most unique and prolific illustrators.

Illustration for Road & Track Magazine by Ken Dallison
Illustration for Road & Track Magazine by Ken Dallison

Ken Dallison

As a young illustrator, Ken Dallison pined for the day when people would open up a magazine and say “yup, that’s a Dallison.” And it didn’t take him long to reach that point.

During a visit with Ken Dallison, having our first incredible tour of his extensive archive of work.
During a visit with Ken Dallison, having our first incredible tour of his extensive archive of work.

In his continuing career of over five decades, not only has Dallison succeeded in creating a style which is undeniably his own – with each drawing like an elaborate signature – he has also carved his place in multiple fields and made his mark on portraiture, reportage illustration, automotive artwork and the illustration industry overall.

An illustration by Ken Dallison featured in the May 1973 issue of Esquire magazine
An illustration by Ken Dallison featured in the May 1973 issue of Esquire magazine

Ken’s unique style – stemming from his working directly in ink with a dip pen – has, for decades, marked magazines, advertisements and more with his energetic, gestural and lively line.

“Ken Dallison can draw what you feel when you look at a Bugatti or an airship or a heroic figure. That’s his genius: the ability to choose the symbols that summarize, that evoke the feeling of an enterprise or an era.”

– Charles Fox, Car and Driver

Castrol Motor Oil Advertisement by Ken Dallison
Castrol Motor Oil Advertisement by Ken Dallison

The Book

Ken Dallison – A Life in Illustration will be a deluxe, full colour, 160 page hardcover art book featuring hundreds of illustrations from the course of Dallison’s career. We will be working directly with Ken to photograph all of his original art and extensive archives of tear sheets to put together a book which features the art. Our design philosophy for art books is simple: it's all about the art. Rather than filling every page with tiny thumbnails, the book will feature large full colour spreads, detailed, high quality reproductions of finished illustrations and a variety of amazing pieces showcasing Dallison’s process – reference photos, comps, sketches and more.

Early illustration by Ken Dallison depicting soldiers in a POW camp. c.1950s
Early illustration by Ken Dallison depicting soldiers in a POW camp. c.1950s

Beyond the artwork, Ken Dallison – A Life in Illustration will feature the stories and anecdotes of Dallison’s amazing life as dictated by the artist himself in dozens of hours of interviews we’ve recorded and are continuing to collect with him. Anybody who has met Ken Dallison will immediately speak to his endlessly engaging and entertaining character, and we want to offer the unique opportunity for his charismatic voice to speak right along with his captivating illustrations.

Today’s Inspiration Press

Created by Leif Peng in 2001, Today’s Inspiration began as a mailing list of just 10 friends, grew into a blog of over 3,000 readers, and evolved into a Facebook group of over 12,000 members, all of whom share a passion and appreciation for illustration in the mid 20th century.

Last year, we launched our first Kickstarter project, The Art of Will Davies with great success and Today’s Inspiration Press was born! You, the community of passionate illustration enthusiasts and everyone who Will Davies has influenced in the industry came together to create something truly amazing and humbling. With your help, we were able to show Will Davies just how influential and important his life’s work was, and continues to be, to so many of us.

Legendary illustrator Will Davies holding and looking through our last book, The Art of Will Davies, successfully funded on Kickstarter last June
Legendary illustrator Will Davies holding and looking through our last book, The Art of Will Davies, successfully funded on Kickstarter last June

 

And that’s what Today’s Inspiration Press is all about. We strive to bring lasting recognition, acknowledgement and deserving esteem to the artists who helped to define the visual style of our culture since the beginning of the 20th century.

We also do it because of how much we love their art!

Now we’re back with another exciting project from one of the most unique and interesting people to touch the illustration industry – Ken Dallison. But we can’t do it without you.

Why Kickstarter?

Like The Art of Will Davies, this book is something which can only be made with the support of the community who would want to see it exist. We are an independent small press publisher, which provides us with the freedom to take on whatever project we think needs to happen. The unique and amazing thing about Kickstarter is that, with your support, we can actually make this possible!

Another facet of crowdfunding which we hadn’t anticipated being so significant our last time around is that we get to show these illustrators that there is a whole world of people who want to see their work immortalized in a book. Most illustrators careers end after having left thousands of amazing pieces of art behind with very few people knowing the names of the brilliant artist who created them, but with Kickstarter we can show these artists that their name is as important as their art – that their careers are something all of us appreciate and want to celebrate!

Budget

We are hoping to raise $27,000 to fund the production of the book, which will cover all of the costs related to the pre-production of the book, the printing, and the supplies that go into fulfilling the shipments. If we exceed this goal, we will be able to expand the book in scope, in page length, in the size of the print run, by offering more of the handmade rewards and even by adding some bonus rewards for all of you amazing backers who support us!

Cover of Flying Magazine by Ken Dallison c.1970
Cover of Flying Magazine by Ken Dallison c.1970

 

Risks and challenges

We have learned a lot from our last Kickstarter book project, The Art of Will Davies. From the practical experience of designing and writing this type of book, to the logistics and time consumption of processing and shipping hundreds of orders with a relatively small team of just a few people, this project will benefit from a myriad of lessons learned – mostly the hard way – and, as a result, will definitely run much smoother.

Of course, one lesson we’ve learned repeatedly is that Murphy’s Law is always waiting around the corner, and that no matter how much you think and plan, things come up which couldn’t have been anticipated. This book will be slightly more ambitious in its formatting, and we are working on some extra, high-quality hand made rewards which are new and exciting and will inevitably present new challenges along the way. We are more than confident that some of the greatest experience we’ve gained in the last year is in our adaptability and capability in publishing, and that this book will be nothing but a success.

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Support

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge CA$ 1 or more About $0.76

    Thank You!

    Thank you for your supporting the project! A pledge of any amount to the project. This reward tier gives you access to all of the backer exclusive updates during the production of the book, and your name will be printed in the back of the book in the list of supporters.

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    Pledge CA$ 15 or more About $11

    Set of 3 Ken Dallison Greeting Cards

    A set of three blank cards (4.13" x 5.82" / 105mm x 148mm) with envelopes, each featuring a unique Ken Dallison illustration. For sharing or framing. You will also receive access to all of the backer exclusive updates during the production of the book, and your name will be printed in the back of the book in the list of supporters.

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    Pledge CA$ 20 or more About $15

    Digital Copy

    You will receive a DRM free digital copy of the book in PDF format for use on almost any digital device. You will also receive access to all of the backer exclusive updates during the production of the book, and your name will be printed in the back of the book in the list of supporters.

    Includes:
    • Digital Book
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    Pledge CA$ 30 or more About $23

    Archival Giclée Print

    8.5x11" archival giclée print of a Ken Dallison illustration. Printed on acid-free archival fine art paper with pigment inks which produce an archival fine art giclée print that will last for over 100 years without noticeable fading or colour shifting.You will also receive access to all of the backer exclusive updates during the production of the book, and your name will be printed in the back of the book in the list of supporters.

    Includes:
    • Giclée Print
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  5. Select this reward

    Pledge CA$ 50 or more About $38

    The Book

    You will receive a copy of Ken Dallison – A Life in Illustration at a Kickstarter exclusive discounted price. The book will retail for $80 CAD. The book will be a full colour, 160 page, hardcover art book with a dust jacket.

    You will also receive the DRM free digital copy, access to all of the backer exclusive updates during the production of the book, and your name will appear printed in the back of the book in the list of supporters.

    Includes:
    • The Book
    • Digital Book
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  6. Select this reward

    Pledge CA$ 60 or more About $46

    The Book and Cards

    You will receive a copy of Ken Dallison – A Life in Illustration at a Kickstarter exclusive discounted price. The book will retail for $80 CAD. The book will be a full colour, 160 page, hardcover art book with a dust jacket.

    You will also receive three blank cards (4.13" x 5.82" / 105mm x 148mm) with envelopes, each featuring a unique Ken Dallison illustration, the DRM free digital copy, access to all of the backer exclusive updates during the production of the book, and your name will appear printed in the back of the book in the list of supporters.

    Includes:
    • The Book
    • Digital Book
    • 3 Cards
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  7. Select this reward

    Pledge CA$ 70 or more About $53

    The Book and Print

    You will receive a copy of Ken Dallison – A Life in Illustration. The book alone will retail for $80 CAD. The book will be a full colour, 160 page, hardcover art book with a dust jacket.

    You will also receive an 8.5x11" archival giclée print of a Ken Dallison illustration, the DRM free digital copy, access to all of the backer exclusive updates during the production of the book, and your name will appear printed in the back of the book in the list of supporters.

    Includes:
    • The Book
    • Digital Book
    • Giclée Print
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  8. Select this reward

    Pledge CA$ 80 or more About $61

    The Book, Cards and Print

    You will receive a copy of Ken Dallison – A Life in Illustration. The book alone will retail for $80 CAD. The book will be a full colour, 160 page, hardcover art book with a dust jacket.

    You will also receive three blank cards (4.13" x 5.82" / 105mm x 148mm) with envelopes, each featuring a unique Ken Dallison illustration, an 8.5x11" archival giclée print of a Ken Dallison illustration, the DRM free digital copy, access to all of the backer exclusive updates during the production of the book, and your name will appear printed in the back of the book in the list of supporters.

    Includes:
    • The Book
    • Digital Book
    • 3 Cards
    • Giclée Print
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  9. Select this reward

    Pledge CA$ 200 or more About $153

    Signed Book

    LIMIT OF 20 – You will receive a copy of the book signed by Ken Dallison. You will also receive the 8.5x11" archival giclée print of a Ken Dallison illustration, the DRM free digital copy, access to all of the backer exclusive updates during the production of the book, and your name will appear printed in the back of the book in the list of supporters.

    Includes:
    • Signed Book
    • Digital Book
    • Giclée Print
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  10. Select this reward

    Pledge CA$ 400 or more About $306

    Retail Bundle

    A set of 10 copies of Ken Dallison – A Life in Illustration at wholesale price. Retail price will be $80 CAD. For further details or questions contact info@todaysinspirationpress.com

    You will also receive a personal DRM free digital copy, access to all of the backer exclusive updates during the production of the book, and your name (or the name of your business) will appear printed in the back of the book in the list of supporters.

    Includes:
    • 10 Books – Retail Bundle
    • Digital Book
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    Pledge CA$ 500 or more About $382

    Signed Book with Handmade Sketchbook

    LIMIT OF 5 – You will receive a copy of the book signed by Ken Dallison, as well as a handmade and bound book featuring reproductions of Ken Dallison's sketches and rough work from throughout his career which will be exclusive to this campaign. You will also receive the 8.5x11" archival giclée print of a Ken Dallison illustration, the DRM free digital copy, access to all of the backer exclusive updates during the production of the book, and your name will appear printed in the back of the book in the list of supporters.

    Includes:
    • Signed Book
    • Digital Book
    • Giclée Print
    • Handmade Sketchbook
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  12. Select this reward

    Pledge CA$ 600 or more About $458

    Signed Reproduction Illustration

    You will receive a full sized (Approx. 40”x30”)* giclée reproduction of an original Ken Dallison Illustration (your choice from a selection of 10 options) signed by Ken Dallison and printed on acid-free archival fine art paper or canvas with pigment inks which produce an archival fine art giclée print that will last for over 100 years without noticeable fading or colour shifting.

    You will also receive a copy of the book, the DRM free digital copy, access to all of the backer exclusive updates during the production of the book, and your name will appear printed in the back of the book in the list of supporters.

    *Exact size of print will vary depending on specific artwork chosen after the project is funded.

    Includes:
    • Full-Sized Reproduction of Illustration
    • The Book
    • Digital Book
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  13. Select this reward

    Pledge CA$ 900 or more About $687

    Original Sketch

    LIMIT OF FIVE: Own a piece of illustration history! You will receive an original sketch by Ken Dallison. Backers of this reward tier will be able to choose their sketch from a selection of pieces once the project has been funded. You will also receive a signed copy of the book, a set of cards, the DRM free digital copy, access to all of the backer exclusive updates during the production of the book, and your name will appear printed in the back of the book in the list of supporters.

    Part of this pledge will go towards compensating Ken Dallison for providing original art for the campaign.

    Includes:
    • Original Sketch
    • Signed Book
    • 3 Cards
    • Digital Book
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    Pledge CA$ 1,000 or more About $764

    Limited Edition Box Set

    LIMIT OF 3 – You will receive a copy of the book signed by Ken Dallison, as well as a handmade and bound book featuring reproductions of Ken Dallison's sketches and rough work from throughout his career, with one original drawing by Ken on the first page of the sketchbook – all collected in a handmade clamshell book box, you will also receive one of Ken Dallison's signature dip pens as a collector's item. This collector's set is handmade and will be exclusive to this campaign.

    You will also receive the 8.5x11" archival giclée print of a Ken Dallison illustration, the DRM free digital copy, access to all of the backer exclusive updates during the production of the book, and your name will appear printed in the back of the book in the list of supporters.

    Includes:
    • Signed Book
    • Digital Book
    • Giclée Print
    • Handmade Sketchbook
    • Limited Edition Box with Dip Pen
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    Reward no longer available 3 backers
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  15. Select this reward

    Pledge CA$ 2,000 or more About $1,528

    Original Illustration

    LIMIT OF FIVE: Own a piece of illustration history! You will receive an original illustration by Ken Dallison. Backers of this reward tier will be able to choose their illustration from a selection of pieces once the project has been funded. You will also receive a signed copy of the book, a set of cards, the DRM free digital copy, access to all of the backer exclusive updates during the production of the book, and your name will appear printed in the back of the book in the list of supporters.

    Part of this pledge will go towards compensating Ken Dallison for providing original art for the campaign.

    Includes:
    • Original Illustration
    • Signed Book
    • 3 Cards
    • Digital Book
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    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Limited 1 backer
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Funding period

- (30 days)