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A contemplative look at anxiety through illustrations collected in a book.
131 backers pledged €5,879 to help bring this project to life.
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€5,879

131


Follow an introspective journey in an illustrated book that depicts a surreal and desolate world where the individual evolves among giant metaphors.

I make drawings about my anxiety, and what it's like to live with it. A Place For My Dark Thoughts talks about that experience with anxiety, its ugliness and beauty, its complexity and intensity. The aim of this book is to share this intricate issue with people who might need support, the way I used to, and to help other people understand the issues their relatives might have. Being passionate about illustration and having a thing for books myself, I took advantage of my craft, and reached out with a quality printer, to create what is meant to be a high end art book.

One of different options for the cover of the book

It all started out of a need as an illustrator, to express these intimate, complex feelings infused by anxiety, fear and loneliness, in a way that I could not do with words. 

After drawing a few of these illustrations, I realized the act of drawing them truly helped me as an outlet, and focusing on trying to draw these feelings also helped me understand the issues much more, which lead to opening up, and feeling relieved.

I used to go against anxiety, or at least, living unaware of its presence, until I reached a point in life where it became too intense and I started questioning myself. I started paying attention to my feelings, which lead to a troublesome period. Drawing helped in that weird process of learning to live with anxiety. It's not an easy way to go, but today I'm fully aware of these problems, and for that reason, among others, I live a much better, conscious and balanced life.

"Anxiety's grasp is almost magnetic, it's powerful but intangible. It can seem impossible to overcome, but you can."

I recently took a step back on this body of work I've completed, and felt like I could do more with these illustrations. When you're under the heavy burden of anxiety, it's often a huge help to feel that you're not alone. I can't count how many times I had to look up online or wherever to find testimonies from other people dealing with anxiety or panic attacks and find strength through their struggle. It seemed to me that compiling these otherworldly images in a book and accompany them with words that I am finally able to write down today, could become a great piece of craft which could act as a supportive companion to people who need it.

This is nothing new, but I'm convinced that this book can participate in growing awareness around mental health issues, in a singular way. Some of the illustrations set a dark tone, which might hurt some people's sensitivity, but it is exactly because of my own sensitivity and how these thoughts and images made me grow, that I think going through them and accepting them is a key step for people to understand themselves, or people around them.

I hope you will feel my pain, my struggle, my growth and my humanity within this book, and find a way to feel better yourself.

"Even if there are people around, when anxiety strikes, you end up in the coldest and loneliest of places."

If this campaign reaches the initial goal, I will be able to finalize the layout for a 21 by 21 cm square book of 60 pages with about 30 illustrations (up to 45 illustrations if the campaign reaches a higher amount, see details in the stretch goals below). 

A sneak peek inside the book

The book is meant to offer a contemplative look at anxiety, each illustration depicting a specific aspect of the subject, but also goes more in detail with written thoughts, experiences, explanations or pieces of advice that accompany the images. All of this is structured in a certain order so that you can strongly feel these Dark Thoughts, but also feel the growth of the struggling individual and end up on more positive notes that show how to live with anxiety and not staying stuck in these Dark Thoughts.

The book will feature at least 5 exclusive artworks that haven't been posted on my social medias or anywhere else, as well as exclusive variations of some of the existing illustrations.

"At times it might feel like anxiety isn't around anymore but you can't really tell if it's dead or just sleeping, waiting to wake up and haunt you again."

The books will be high quality printed in Europe, and will feature a matte, strong hardcover and 115 gram coated paper inside. The initial goal is meant to guarantee that the book will be of great quality, however, if the campaign reaches higher stretch goals, I will be able to go for even better, high-end details such as a soft-touch embossed hardcover, heavier paper and more pages with more content.

The funds will be used to finalize artworks that are still in progress, finalize the draft lay-out of the book, proof-read it and print the books, as well as handle other expected and unexpected fees (Kickstarter, distributors, packaging, ...).

"Stand tall until its downfall. Let it go through you and face it as long as it needs to, until the day you will watch it burn."

I'm Ben Bauchau, a freelance illustrator from Brussels. I have been working for a few years in different fields related to illustration (such as animation, video games and board games, books, branding and editorial) and have been focusing my work around ink drawings, colored digitally. I show an interest for different subjects in my drawings, the human mind and anxiety being some of them.

you can see more of my Dark Thoughts work here, learn more about my other work here, and have a look at the process behind a Dark Thought illustration in the video below.

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The initial goal is to successfully publish this book. I'm hoping to reach that initial goal, but if the campaign is a bigger success then expected, here are the stretch goals that I plan on unlocking:


There are different pledge options. You can either back the project and get a copy of the book, or get a copy of the book AND a signed limited edition giclée print (these will be printed exclusively for this campaign). You can also choose a more special pledge that includes an original drawing, or even a pledge that gives you the opportunity of coming up with an idea for a drawing that I will do exclusively for you.

I will go through a pledge manager (Backerkit) at the end of the campaign, which will allow you to finalize your order and pick what you want in case you've changed your mind, or, add/remove additional books or prints to your pledge. It is also through Backerkit that you will be able to choose the print(s) you want from the selection above.

"After some time, I started seeing these dark thoughts as something that wasn't a part of me. Rather some independant entities roaming in my mind."

Shipping fees will be applied after the campaign, through a pledge manager (Backerkit). Those fees will depend on the number of packages I end up sending, but here is a list of what the highest fees are to be expected:

Belgium: 3€ (you will also have the free-of-charge option of picking up your pledge in Brussels)

France, Germany, Netherlands, Luxembourg: 5€

United Kingdoms: 7€

Rest of Europe and USA: 11€

Canada, Switzerland: 16€

Rest of the world: 20+ € (Russia, Japan, China, Australia, Brazil, Taiwan, Thailand for example, are between 22€ and 28€)

If you want to order more then 4 books, or choose a pledge that includes original drawings or commissioned drawings, the shipping fees may vary. If you have any questions regarding shipping, reach out at aplaceformydarkthoughts@gmail.com.

All shippings will be tracked.

If you order out of the UE, I can't guarantee that you're safe from custom charges in your country. I have reached out with fulfillment centers in some locations (USA, Canada,...). If I reach a certain amount of packages to ship, I will be able to go through these centers, and they would handle the custom charges. Unfortunately I can't plan this in advance, but will keep you posted on the situation during the campaign.

"Anxiety has its way of leaving you empty sometimes."

Risks and challenges

This is kind of a risk free project. There are 25 illustrations already done, and a draft layout of the book is well in progress. The written content is about 80% done and will mostly need some proof reading.
I've selected a quality printer and have a good idea of their process and fees.

If there are no unexpected delays or events, I'm hoping to deliver the books in Januray 2020. (if you plan on offering the book as a gift but fear it will not be available in time, you can reach out at aplaceformydarkthoughts@gmail.com to get a gift card template for you to print out while you wait for the book).

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Support

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge €3 or more About $4

    Your Support

    You don't want the book, or you don't have the funds right now, but you still want to support this project. It's much appreciated, and this pledge will give you access to HD digital files of a selection of the artworks.

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    1 backer

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  2. Select this reward

    Pledge €15 or more About $17

    Signed, limited edition print(s)

    With this pledge you'll receive (a) 20x20cm (8x8inch) signed limited edition print(s).

    (Add +15€ per additional print. Shipping fees will be applied through the pledge manager at the end of the campaign. Learn more in the "Pledges and Shipping" chapter of the campaign.)

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    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    4 backers

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  3. Select this reward

    Pledge €20 or more About $23

    Get a copy of the book

    With this pledge you'll receive a copy of the book.

    (Add +20€ per additional book. Shipping fees will be applied through the pledge manager at the end of the campaign. Learn more in the "Pledges and Shipping" chapter of the campaign.)

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    37 backers

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  4. Select this reward

    Pledge €35 or more About $39

    The book + Print

    With this pledge you'll receive a copy of the book and a print (20x20cm signed limited edition).

    (Add +20€ per additional book, +15€ per additional print. Shipping fees will be applied through the pledge manager at the end of the campaign. Learn more in the "Pledges and Shipping" chapter of the campaign.)

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    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    25 backers

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  5. Select this reward

    Pledge €180 or more About $199

    The book + Original drawing

    LIMITED - With this pledge you'll receive a copy of the book and one of the original black and white ink drawings (A3 size). I will also add a special mention of you in the "thank you" section of the book. E-mail me at aplaceformydarkthoughts@gmail.com for availability and details.

    (Add +20€ per additional book. Shipping fees will be applied through the pledge manager at the end of the campaign. Learn more in the "Pledges and Shipping" chapter of the campaign.)

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    Limited 6 backers

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  6. Select this reward

    Pledge €320 or more About $354

    I draw your Dark Thought

    LIMITED - By choosing this pledge, you will receive a black and white ink drawing on A3 paper, and a HD file of the colored version, of an illustration I will do based on a description of a thought or vision from you. I will also add a special mention of you in the "thank you" section of the book. If you choose this pledge, email me at aplaceformydarkthoughts@gmail.com to discuss details.

    (Add +20€ per additional book. Shipping fees will be applied through the pledge manager at the end of the campaign. Learn more in the "Pledges and Shipping" chapter of the campaign.)

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    Limited 5 backers

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    Pledge €16 or more About $18

    Early Bird / The book at 20% off

    LIMITED - With this pledge you'll receive a copy of the book, at 20% off.

    (Add +16€ per additional book. Shipping fees will be applied through the pledge manager at the end of the campaign. Learn more in the "Pledges and Shipping" chapter of the campaign.)

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    Reward no longer available 25 backers

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  8. Reward no longer available

    Pledge €28 or more About $31

    Early Bird / The book + print at 20% off

    LIMITED - With this pledge you'll receive a copy of the book and a print (20x20cm signed limited edition), both at 20% off.

    (Add +16€ per additional book, +12€ per additional print. Shipping fees will be applied through the pledge manager at the end of the campaign. Learn more in the "Pledges and Shipping" chapter of the campaign.)

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    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Reward no longer available 25 backers

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Funding period

- (30 days)