Funded! This project was successfully funded on March 17, 2012.

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The South Puget Sound: a million people, 3,000 square miles but no guidebook. 'Til now. Join us in this art-drenched, grassroots guide.

Washington's South Puget Sound is a special place, with over a million people and 3,000 square miles of stunning natural beauty, a thriving arts scene, unique shops and restaurants - and no guide book of our own.

With your help we'll change that.

The three of us - Chris Sharp, Sean Alexander and Ken Miller - are planning the first guide dedicated to the South Sound; we think it may be the most artful guidebook anywhere. 

All the illustrations will be original black and white pen-and-ink by Sean; and Chris is doing the layout and design in "craftsman" spirit, breaking down the boundary between form and function, stripping away the superficial. That authenticity makes our region precious to us; it's a trait we aim to convey in the book.

The guide will be organized by location, much like Saul Wurman's ground-breaking Access series. Pick a spot and you'll find the best built and natural features, a bit of history, suggestions for a drink or a bike ride.

We're recruiting dozens of writers to describe the places they know and love so readers have the benefit of all those perspectives. And our editorial board will ensure a consistent voice through it all. 

Plus we'll feature lists of favorites from South Sound notables: best birding sites; favorite bookstores; coolest places to perform and hear live music.

You can see video of Sean and Chris talking about their art on our web site, where we'll also post new drawings as they're completed. Please follow us on Twitter to keep up to the minute, and if you become a sponsor you'll receive Kickstarter updates as well.

We hope you'll join us in creating this special book, for a special part of the world. Thanks. 

P.S. We  want to say "thanks" for help with the video: Tacoma's Mad Hat Tea Company; Tobin Ropes and Joseph Taylor for videography; Peter Serko for many photos; Flickr Creative Commons photos from Ingrid Taylar, kelp, Zach Hodgson, Debs, Scott Hingst, Russell Bernice, Catherine Bennett, Rick Donohue, Gareth Williams, rajkumar1220 and Erik Bjornson; and Beth Tallman, Heart&Soul Artist Management. Thanks!

FAQ

  • first, thank you for not asking about the missing apostrophe after Users. probably fell out of the truck, but we're don't like to talk about it.

    for us, the special part of the South Sound is authenticity, the "what you see is what you get" nature of the place. and we think the best way to experience the South Sound is to be in it, be part of it...in other words, use it. not exploit it or be careless, but give it part of ourselves and take from it too.

    aargh! now we're somewhere between metaphysics and the SyFy channel. sorry; won't happen again.

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  • the Guide will be entirely illustrated with these new drawings by Sean Alexander, and we're creating a limited edition book of just the drawings. they're pen and ink, 6" by 6". Sean has a VERY large collection of pens, including those he categorizes as "dead" and "near dead." zombie pens, sort of. some of the drawings take as long as ten hours to complete because every dot of ink is done by hand. Sean's in Brooklyn right now, doing art and hunting old chairs in New England, but he says he'll come home in the Spring. maybe when the zombie pens awaken.

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    You have our thanks, and we'll list you in the book as a supporter.

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    Our thanks, a listing in the book AND five postcards of Sean Alexander's original art. The cards will be "full bleed" [no white margin] and will look great mounted. You'll tell us which cards you want. [And yes, Mt Rainier IS an active volcano. Please stand back.]

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    All the above [ATA] AND an E-version of the book; we'll be in touch to find out which format you use.

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    ATA, except your book is signed by Sean Alexander, Chris Sharp and Ken Miller. This is big. Very big.

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    we can customize the guide with your message on the back cover; please get in touch for details

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    ATA AND the book will include your write-up of a favorite place [subject to perhaps a wee bit of editing].

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    ATA AND you'll have the honor of naming the book's geo-caching challenge. This is like your name in lights, except using GPS coordinates.

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    ATA AND a customized itinerary for seven days and six nights in the South Sound. You tell us what you like to do [within reason, of course] and we'll plan your trip.

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