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Chime Whistle Books

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  1. Maybe so, but the point still stands that shop closures/reduced opening hours is a trend within the book selling business, as more buyers use the internet for their shopping. I hope his books do well. https://www.chimewhistle.co.uk/page/new-products
  2. No one has a right not to have their opinions challenged, as long as it is done in a polite and constructive manner. Imagine if the logic not to challenge was applied to Question Time. I notice that the Titfield book shop is now only opening one day a week (reduced opening hours or complete closure is a growing trend within the smaller book selling businesses) which only goes to make the point about the huge shift towards online selling and the decreasing demand for a physical shop. Yes, a well stocked transport bookshop is indeed a lovely thing, but are such things financially viable in the long term, outside of major chains? I would like to think that there will not be a complete extinction of such establishments and I suspect that some will survive, just as there are photographers that still use film. One only has to look at how even Ian Allan has had to close some of its branches in the face of competition from the internet. All publishers will have different experiences within the market which they operate and what works for one may not work for another. One big transport publisher recently told me that it could never justify distribution of its titles outside of the WH Smith chain, due to what it would cost, and is doing a great trade selling its titles on line, which makes up a significant percentage of its sales, a sector of the book selling business that is growing at a steady rate. I imagine that this situation will not change anytime soon. https://www.chimewhistle.co.uk/page/new-products
  3. I've been professionally involved in publishing for 20 plus years and what he says held true some time ago, and parts still do, but my experience in much more recent times is that things have changed and the break even/print run figures were only told to me a few weeks ago, along with the financial reasons as to why it makes commercial sense to sell direct wherever possible. Obviously, every publisher has a different take on the market and acts according to those beliefs,but big publishing houses (one of which gave me those figures during a candid discussion) tend to know which way the wind is blowing. Yes, Ray is a great chap!
  4. Your experience is interesting, but not one that I recognise to any great degree. Only a few weeks ago, during a candid meeting between professional publishers, one transport publishing company told me that it would see 3000 copies as an absolute minimum print run, for the simple reason that it doesn't earn its first pound until 2000 copies have been sold. Ideally, it said, it aimed for a print run of around 12000 and chose proposals on the basis that it could shift something approaching that number. Regarding distribution, again many publishers pick and choose, allowing their titles to be sold in sometimes just one or two chains. Again, it comes down to cost and at least one major publisher does the vast majority of its business via mail order, supplemented with a trade stand at the odd open day. This seems to be a growing trend in the age of the internet, with online shopping becoming increasingly popular with shoppers and businesses alike. Regarding printing. There have been shades of Colin Gifford between myself and the printers, with numerous pages being printed on different types of paper, until the best one was chosen. Having been professionally involved in publishing for two decades, I know my way around the business. Digital printing is very good and I would not put my name to anything that I thought wasn't. I've received a lot of pre-release orders for the books, which is always a good sign. Luck plays a part, but the harder I work the luckier I become. I've spent today photographing and interviewing people for my Dirt, Soot and Smoke book, which is looking rather good! Glad you think my books are interesting, because they certainly are! https://www.chimewhistle.co.uk/page/new-products
  5. Yes, I have a number of Bradford Barton books and although they consist of primarily 3/4 views, many of the images have an added dimension, be it the inclusion of a person or, as was often the case with H.L. Ford, a train in the landscape, where the number was often not even recorded. It's about having enough imagination to be able to move away from the ordinary and create images that make you want to linger and not just turn the page. These don't necessarily have to be 'high art' pictures, just something that makes them stand out from the mundane and that's something I try to carry over into my books. The 'secret' is, in my opinion, is to move away from anything that is contrived and move more towards a candid style of photography. Professionally, Cuneo and Colin Garratt have both played a part in influencing my photography, Cuneo for his semi-impressionistic style and CG for his ability to bring a depth to a situation that many other photographers would find impossible. However, in the finality, one has to plough one's own furrow and create a style of one's own, something that Colin Gifford has done. https://www.chimewhistle.co.uk/page/new-products
  6. Considering the cost of colour film at the time, compared to black and white, we are very lucky that some were able to record such scenes in colour.
  7. I'm making a general point, that the majority of rail books are of the 3/4 front view, no (or very few) people included type. Where there is a deviation from this style, it tends to be within the confines of a 'conservative' styled book, with the more adventurous pictures making up a small percentage of the overall content. Colin Gifford is different in the fact that his whole book is given over to iconic pictures. I've been professionally involved in railway publishing for over 20 years and many mainstream publishers will not entertain an idea for a book unless they think they can shift at last 3000 copies. My professional opinion is that the way forward for these type of niche books, is relatively small print runs (such as Colin's book) as that way the unit price comes right down once you order over 250 from a printer. I would NEVER entertain print on demand (Blurb etc) as the economics just don't add up. It's far better to engage with a printer and order a relatively short print run as you also build up a relationship with said printer and,in my opinion, the quality control is superior.If you remember, Colin had to send his samples back and forth to the printer because the reproduction just wasn't quite right. I doubt if one could do that with print on demand.The print firm I'm using has sent me a wad of different types of paper(samples) etc and we've talked through various options, again , that's something that print on demand would not offer. Initially the books, first one to be released next month, will be available via mail order and via the sale stands of at last one loco owning group. ISBN numbers to be released prior to publication. https://www.chimewhistle.co.uk/page/new-products
  8. Yes, so many railway books are just page after page of 3/4 front wedge shots, with a total absence of humans. They may be technically good, but don't actually 'say' anything or convey anything deeper than being a nice 'pretty' picture. Colin Gifford is as far removed from that style as it's possible to get and it's a pity (myself EXCLUDED!) that more publishers don't take a gamble with this style of railway book. Yes, a 3/4 front view of a Black 5 storming along the main line looks wonderful, but there is so much more to railway photography than that. Candid pictures of rail staff and machines (be they steam or diesel,or even signallers) is what creates iconic images, which is where most photo charters fall down, in the context that they are contrived. Another, often neglected, subject is the rail passenger. If one looks back at station pictures taken in the 1960s and 1970s, the fashions are every bit as interesting as the locos! Congratulations Colin, you've done a great job in taking railway photography to another level. Let's hope more follow. https://www.chimewhistle.co.uk/page/new-products
  9. Looks to be a good book of the type that will be invaluable as a reference book. Having put a number of books together myself, I know just how much time this will have taken to get to the printing stage! https://www.chimewhistle.co.uk/page/new-products
  10. Looking at the site now, you would never believe it was once an extremely busy depot! https://www.chimewhistle.co.uk/page/new-products
  11. Indeed. Having seen it transformed from a rather tired looking DRS livery,it's hard to believe it's the same loco! It has had a lot of work done on it too, in terms of having vacuum brakes fitted etc. Painter Mick Flint (who also works at Bridgnorth depot paint shop) takes a lot of pride in his work and it's a pleasure to watch him paint. He used to work at Toton depot, painting EWS locos by hand. He puts in a starring role in my upcoming book on Kidderminster depot! If you ever wondered what is involved in hand painting a loco, or an engine lift etc, this is the book for you! https://www.chimewhistle.co.uk/page/new-products
  12. https://www.chimewhistle.co.uk/ Chime Whistle is a new book publisher, producing high quality, all colour hard back books. Currently there are three books on the website, with more to be announced over the coming weeks. Full details here: https://www.chimewhistle.co.uk/page/new-products
  13. It's often referred to as the Old Oak Common of preservation, due in no small part to the fact that the main building is almost an exact replica of a maintenance shed at said depot. Someone from the SVR diesel department, went down to OOC to measure it up. Yes, D7029 is making steady progress and is currently alongside D1013 and D1015 , well it was a couple of weeks ago. D1013 is, so I'm told, next in line for painting, although this will probably not happen for around another 12 months, as there is still quite a bit of work to do on it, including a lift. One also has to take into consideration the weather conditions for painting, such as making sure it's not too damp or cold. I've photographed D1015,D1062 and 37688 (all in new book!) being painted from stage 1 all the way through to the final coat, and it's fascinating to see the amount of preparation that goes into such tasks, even before the first brush stroke. Watching the painter at work (same chap for all three locos) is like watching an artist transform a blank canvas into a masterpiece. https://www.chimewhistle.co.uk Quality railway books.
  14. As an aside, Cuneo was known not to be a fan of the painting, claiming that one could hardly see the loco! https://www.chimewhistle.co.uk
  15. Still quite a bit of work to do on D7029 and I've been told it'll be 3-5 years before it's up and running. This may seem a long time, but the DTG also has D821,D1015 and D8568 to maintain, with D1015 about to have two engines lifted in. Even so, there are DTG people working on D7029 on a regular basis, it's just that the runners take priority. (Plug) I've a book coming out in September (orders open now!) on Kidderminster depot and it features all the aforementioned locos under repair, along with every other SVR diesel and the volunteers that maintain them. Link here: www.chimewhistle.co.uk
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