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Chocolate Rain in German!

March 31, 2013

choc rain in germanresized

I’m so excited. I received the German edition of my book in the mail yesterday. Originally published and available from Hawker publications, they have sold the German rights to Hans Huber, a large international publishing house with branches in most major European cities.

I’d seen one other translation they’d done of one of Hawker’s books- it was well done and ‘clean’, but the same handling of my warm, hand crafted book   would have killed it. I wrote the book and illustrated it, then Hawker gave me free hand in designing it. I also set it up in InDesign and prepared the  preproduction process which was a steep learning curve for me. So you can imagine, after having been able to design each and every page and spread, and attend to every last detail to the fraction of a millimetre, how hard it was to let it out of my hands. I hadn’t been consulted on the translation at all, so I was preparing myself for a major let down as I was opening the package.

Well, I hardly have words to say how beautifully the whole thing is done. Whoever handled the art direction loved this book as much as I did. The spreads were preserved, all the design was intact. Even the most difficult, hand-written spread was done as well as I could have done it using my own handwriting. There is so much care put in to preserve the spirit of the book in every way, I am infinitely grateful.

So Chocolate Rain is going out to an entirely new public, where hopefully it will connect people to the power of the arts to move, engage, bring healing and comfort to people with dementia, their caregivers and families.

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11 Responses to “Chocolate Rain in German!”


  1. Congratulations Sarah how fabulous. I wish you every success with it after all your hard work. Happy Easter and great timing for this new German adventure. Always a time of new beginnings.

    • Sarah Zoutewelle Says:

      Thanks Sonia. Much appreciated. Yes, it feels like an new adventure. And I so do feel this period as a time for new beginnings. It has been quite a slog this winter,creatively and otherwise, though there were no real problems per se, just a lack of real direction. I wish us both a time of ease and new opportunities, and success with everything.


      • I know what you mean about a slog of winter. It didn’t help that the weather was so bad from last June onwards here and we have had a very cold March and February. I’m looking forward to a bit of sun on my bones and shedding a few layers! Here’s to success and ease.

  2. michael davidson Says:

    Tis is ssooooooo exciting ….just in time for the new expansion energies fo april and May ….big hugs bg news xoxox /Michael

    • Sarah Zoutewelle Says:

      Michael, thank you! Yes, the energies do feel like they are breaking up and moving after a particulalry stuck winter. I do hope this is true for the book as well. hugs back, Sarah


  3. Very proud of you, Sarah!
    How awesome!
    Keep on keeping on!

  4. decorartuk Says:

    Congratulations, Sarah! I think the cover looks really good, I’d definitely pick it up to have a look at all 99 ideas! Also glad to hear that the new printers respected your hard work and left everything intact. So all the best with this project and many more that you might decide to get involved in. K.

    P.S. I noticed that the English version offers 100 ideas, what’s the one idea that is missing in the German one? 🙂

    • Sarah Zoutewelle Says:

      Thanks K!, I have no idea what happened to the 100th idea? Maybe in Germany it is more trendy to have 99 than 100- 99 is kind of nice though , it creates a tension for the reader to create number 100.

      • decorartuk Says:

        You’re probably right, still it’s interesting how some things get lost in “translation”.

        P.S. Came across a new term today – outsider art – “was coined as a term to describe art created beyond mainstream culture, such as in mental health institutions, although it now more generally defines work made by artists without art school training and outside the market.” It seems this is what you’re encouraging to create and I also fall under this cathegory. I’m not sure if I like it though… What do you think?

      • Sarah Zoutewelle Says:

        Hi K, I don’t think I’d interpret ‘outsider art’ this way, and you certainly don’t fall under that category. I think there is a whole stream of folk art, and sort of strange things like a man who made his house out of old bottles, that kind of thing, definitley creative, but not mainstream. And sometimes it it art made by a strong character, sometimes with a political or social side.

        My book isn’t at all about the product or result. It is about how when caregivers and families understand creative principles they can more efectively understand the world of someone with dementia. And can better communicate with them and engage them in meaningful activity. People with advanced dementia have lost verbal and rational capacities to express themselves, so will often use language and gesture in poetic or symbolic ways. If you are coming from a purely logical or medical standpoint, these won’t make any sense and the person will be frustrated by her inability to communicate with you, and may even stop trying.

        My book is a plea for, among other things, better cross-discipline training so medical personel become more creative and spontaneous in engaging people with cognitive challenges. Also it talks a lot about the stigmas around dementia and how an understanding of the creative process can help see the supposedly negative behaviour of someone in a more positive and pro-active light.

        About your art– if you want to pursue it, I suggest that you think a little more about where you would like to go with it. It is fine to just pick it up and play every once in awhile, but this will assure that you stay on the same level with the same level of frustration. If you want to progress with your painting, I think you need to make a loose plan for advancing in technique, so that you can express yourself as you’d wish. You don;’t have to burden yourself with a list of ‘Must do’s’. Why not think in your next few paintings more about making the negative spaces more active. Just be being aware of them they will become more interesting. And then when you are good with that, you could look at some colour mixing. these can all be found on the internet in demos and blogs, and I know it would give you impetus to take your painting a bit more seriously (without having to choose for that exclusively), and satisfaction in seeing yourself progress. 🙂 S

  5. Lou Bliss Says:

    Hi Sarah,
    I have recently ordered your book and am eagerly awaiting its arrival. My best friend was diagnosed with early onset dementia nearly 3 years ago (she is 39), and I am exploring the issues (mainly personal, but getting interested in the social implications too) surrounding this through my art practice. I returned to education and am in the my 2nd year of a contemporary art degree, and loving every minute of it, after nearly 20 years of trying to ‘fit art in’ to my life!
    Myself and my friend’s mum are always looking for activities to engage with her, and I have been trying to involve her in some of the work I have been doing. I can’t wait to see some of your suggestions, as I have really noticed that encouraging her in creativity seems to lead to an enthusiastic and animated response. I am going to enlist her help in creating a small collage book to accompany my photography project (in the making here http://loublissphoto.wordpress.com/behind-the-scenes-task-5/) inspired by the sneak peek you provided of Chocolate Rain. Anyway, I would be really interested in any feedback you may have on the work I am doing, and if in your research you have come across any other artists who are working with or investigating the personal effects of dementia. Please feel free to email me at loubliss@hotmail.co.uk or comment directly on my blog!
    Congratulations on the German publication of the book – it is a great achievement. I haven’t found any other resources with this kind of slant, so I’m sure it will be very successful.
    With best wishes,
    Lou


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