The Ojibwe ‘Ajijaak’ Storybook Project on Kickstarter

I saw this link in another blogger’s twitter feed, and knew that it deserved a big signal boost. With untold unique language going extinct daily, this storybook project is one necessary and worthwhile step in protecting at least one language from disappearing completely.

From the project’s Kickstarter page:

The making of the Storybook “Ajijaak!”

FOUR Colours Productions is an aboriginal and non aboriginal collaboration of artists, language teachers, designers, elders, storytellers and more who come together to create Ojibwe Language storybooks and Cd’s for sale in the community. The thing we have in common is an inherent interest in preserving creativity, culture and the arts in community- especially for the little ones!

What do we do?

We receive no funding help and we have no sponsors and hence have formed this Kickstarter project to assist in paying for the cost of printing and binding 100 full color paperback books for the first edition of “Ajijaak.” We also would like to pay our translator, storyteller & artist for their efforts.

To make a book we come together and share our portions of the project- This happens in many ways. Sometimes a story comes forward, the artist suggests ideas for drawings, the translator points out items that need refinement or cultural issues, an elder advises on the project and the writer reworks their material. The discussions occur over the internet, in person and sometimes on the phone. The beauty of collaboration is that it does not take as much time & resources to make a beautiful artwork/book as it would alone and by yourself. The process allows us to feature great talent from across many communities and cultures as well and we are proud of that fact. Many of us would not be published or be able to produce a book alone but the collaborative process allows us to pool our talents and resources and shine.

Our Goal!

The intent is to assist populating the libraries, book shops, children’s homes and schools with more Ojibwe language materials- the more the merrier. We reach a diverse audience from families on the rez to urban kids with awesome parents who want their kids to learn about all kinds of cultures. There can never be enough books, Cd’s, videos, immersion classes and more. We feel we are a very small part of a large community trying to help save the language.The main thing we like about our process is that it allows us to do that- ”DO” being the key word.

Where does your money go?

      • Cost of printing 100 full color paperback books- it cost about $7-$8 to make one book!
        The books are full color, glossy paper, cardstock UV coated color covers with full ISBN numbers and pricing on them- ready to go to the library or book store!
      • Cost of shipping the books to us from the printer.
      • Cost for obtaining an ISBN number for the book $ copyright.
      • Cost of translation- we pay our valuable translators by the word.
        Sometimes payments are on a monthly payment plan- but at least we pay!They take valuable time out of their schedules to translate and proof read.
      • Cost of story and artwork creation- we pay our artists & writers.
        Sometimes payments are on a monthly payment plan but at least we pay!They have to buy art supplies or use their time to write and re-write a story.

Please donate to this great cause!

Thanks, RVCBard, for adding me to the Ars Marginal so that I could do this!