The Bible shows us what a life of faith looks like. It shapes who we are by inviting us into its world. And, in a way, the Bible holds our own stories. It partners with us by modeling our journeys of discovery and faith.
We tell our stories to make sense of our experiences. We share them to find community for our joy and our pain. And we see them reflected in the pages of the Bible.
Earlier this year, we created an app called Parallel Bible to connect people, their communities and their stories with the Bible. By giving you the chance to post and share your own pictures alongside Bible verses, Parallel helps to deepen the links between the Bible and our everyday lives.
Now we want to bring Parallel Bible to life as a book. A breakthrough in conceiving the way a Bible is made. This will be the first ever printing of the Bible that sources all of its visual content from its readers. Your pictures, your stories, right next to Scripture. It’s the Bible as community experience: a beautiful and vivid reflection of how the Bible can come to life in our lives.
Welcome to the Gospel of Mark – in Parallel.
The first volume of our Parallel Library will be the Gospel of Mark – a short book of the life and teachings of Jesus and the oldest of the four Gospels – illuminated by your images.
- Approximately 1000 pages of images from the Parallel Bible community (for the 678 verses comprising the 16 chapters of Mark)
- Fore-edges deckled (textured) by hand
- Four-color offset press; highest quality inks
- Chapter-verse citation will replace traditional page numbers
- Custom typeface in four weights developed exclusively for Parallel Bible for use in headings and titles; in addition to other reading typefaces to be determined
- Thread-sewn binding with exposed spine, highest quality cold glue (read: you can see the sewing process on the binding and the book will “lay flat” despite its size)
- Size: 5.125” x 7.0625”
- Swiss-bound hard cover with blind deboss front cover and spine; cover wrap over 98pt board, letterpress score and applied to French folded dustjacket (cover wrap)
- Paper: Opaque, tactile, off-white, uncoated book paper (Stock: 40lb Offset)
We are Andrew and Chris Breitenberg and pleased to meet you! We’re two brothers fulfilling a childhood dream to one day take a big adventure together. We hope you will join us.
We’re part of a bigger team that includes programmers, prayers, contributors, story-tellers and friends around the world that make up the Parallel Bible community. We live out on the East Coast (Virginia Beach and DC) and would love to connect. Tweet Andrew (@breitenberg) and Chris (@cbreitenberg) if you are in the area and want to hang out. We're keen.
For more examples of Andrew's work in the realm of book design, check it out here.
We’re here to craft a beautiful, visually compelling, community-illuminated Gospel of Mark and we really want you to have a copy – whether it’s for your bookshelf or the art book/bible lover you know would love this piece.
Each dollar of the $60,000 will go directly to the manufacture of 1000 books. This is a passion project and we will cover the cost of content curation, book design, layout and project oversight ourselves. If we cross $60,000, we’ll roll out some added bonuses made possible through the additional funds.
Quality book design and production is art. We want to send you an heirloom. We’ve found an excellent printer in the US who excels in high-end book production and believes in seeing this project come to life with the quality it deserves. We believe that you and many people will be talking about this book for a long time to come.
Cost Breakdown at $60,000
- Printing and Binding and Freight: 1000 books ($48,436 @ $48.43/book)
- Kickstarter cut: 5% ($3,214)
- Credit card processing cut: up to 5% (approximately $3,214)
- Contingency: A bit of buffer, since we’re working strictly on estimates for the time being ($5,136)
You’ve seen some images of the book. That’s the focus of the campaign.
We want to offer something else as well. This tshirt is available to everyone who wants to be a part of this campaign but may find the book a bit pricey or for others who want to bundle the book with another great piece (at a reduced rate) from the Parallel Bible workshop.
High-quality 100% cotton || stone-washed || crew neck || hand silk-screened
Andrew designed this limited edition tshirt for this campaign only. It will be the only time it is available for purchase.
All the images will be crowd-sourced (just like this campaign is crowd-funded). With our free smartphone app called Parallel Bible, anyone can add photos, tag them with Bible verses and share them with their friends and the wider community. We’ll use the images from the Parallel Bible database to fill the pages of the printed book. Your images will be in this book and we look forward to seeing what you add to this project.
You may have noticed that across the various media of the campaign there are a couple of different covers for the book. In the design process the cover comes last. What we've mocked up represents the elegance, beauty and ultimate direction we will take with the final design.
A Point-in-time Community Collaboration
The digital Parallel Bible will extend well beyond the completion of this project. The day we finish the book, we expect that hundreds of more photos will be tagged into Mark via Parallel Bible. To that end, this book is truly a one-of-a-kind, moment-in-time community art piece. Beyond the beautiful quality of the book itself, we’re captivated by the idea that it will record a moment in our collective connection with the Gospel, one that would inevitably change should we do it in a year – or even a month – from now.
We’re still in the process of selecting a translation. We appreciate your patience with this decision and look forward to selecting a translation that fits well for this project.
Our goal is to use all of the imagery submitted to the book of Mark on our app at the time we go to print. Images will not be filtered or cropped.
At the back of the book we will have a sizeable index crediting each of your images with your @username. As space allows, we will also include the comment you submitted with the image. None of the subsequent comments in the thread for any given image will be included.
If you are as interested/excited/passionate/curious as us, we'd love to be in touch. Chris is keen to connect at cmb [at] theparallelbible [dot] com.
- To Brad Daniels at Ebb & Flow Films for the beautiful video
- Brown Feather Sparrow for "Come and Let Us Carry"
- Charlotte Sawyer, Andrew Lane and Jonty Herman for your lovely moving pictures
Risks and challenges
We’ll use the images from the actual Parallel Bible web and mobile apps. In order for it to work, we’ll need a lot of images from you – the PB community – specifically for the Gospel of Mark.
The project will take time to complete. While we want this project to be out to you by Christmas 2015, we note the nature of this crowd-sourced project and the intricacy of the design process as variables that could effect the timeline.
This is a passion project. If you have ever met Andrew, you know that books hold a special place in his heart and making books even more so. The degree of detail that goes into this process will be extremely high. That said, we know that artisan-crafted, often means meticulous. We’re aiming for a slow-aged process well worth the wait.
- (33 days)