Dear readers of my new book, An Illustrated Journey. You may have noticed that there are several references to something called “pare” watercolors throughout the contributor essays. To clarify, there is no such thing. This was an error that slipped through copyediting process unnoticed.

My editor and I cannot explain how this strange gremlin appeared; my only theory is that somehow a spellchecker caught the British spelling of “watercolours” and instead of just replacing it with “watercolors” added “pare” as well. Cursed machines.

I hope it doesn’t it diminish your pleasure in reading the book. It will be corrected in the next printing. Damn.

Addendum 2/22: Just heard from my editor:  An Illustrated Journey is going right back on press as the first printing is already sold out! And the new printing will not contain any “pare” watercolors … or any other sorts of mistakes! :)

34 thoughts on “Apologies

  1. Well I had already made up my own solution. I figured “pare” watercolors was a British reference to a basic watercolor set. LOL

  2. Well, I’m glad I have one of the unique books – it’s the Japanese aesthetic of wabi-sabi!
    I, too, figured it was a British reference to a type of watercolor …

  3. will not dimish the pleasure at all if the book is anything close to the previous Illustrated Life. It’s a favorite in my shelves. Just ordered my copy and I guess it’s on its way, cant wait!

  4. Won’t that make this first printing a collector’s rare edition one of these days after several more printings? Just makes our copies even more valuable!

  5. No matter how hard we try to pare down mistakes, they always find a way to enter our work. Thanks for the heads up and I’m sure the next edition will be out soon since it’s a fabulous book. Of course, you could always say the mistake was a nod to the gods and you did on purpose to keep the book from being perfect. :)

  6. I don’t think there’s a single book I read that doesn’t have similar slipups, Danny. In this day of spellcheck, it’s understandable…but it always frustrates me because I would love to edit and I would be good at it, but don’t have the formal credentials to be hired to do that. It’s probably not a stretch to say that accuracy in spelling is becoming a lost art. If you’re good at spelling, you can spot a mistake immediately…but if it’s a weakness, your eye goes right over it. The thing is, a book (presumably) is read by MANY people before it goes to final printing, which proves my point.

    • I hear you Rita! :-) I think give urself a chance and volunteer to edit some works to give urself some creditionals for a job in editing. I agree it’s becoming a lost art. Grammar is important to me too. Give urself a chance :-)

  7. Danny, Sorry about the “pare” imperfection. However, you are in good company. Mark Twain’s tale was recently told in The Writer’s Almanac,that I’ve cut and pasted for you and highlighted in dark blue the juicy bit… Have faith that those of us who purchase the early version, the “pare printing,” will one day have ourselves a collector’s item! Mary In the summer of 1883, Mark Twain (books by this author) wrote in a letter: “I am piling up manuscript in a really astonishing way. I believe I shall complete, in two months, a book which I have been fooling over for seven years. This summer it is no more trouble to me to write than it is to lie.” And on this day in 1885, Twain published that manuscript,Adventures of Huckleberry Finn. Almost a decade earlier, The Adventures of Tom Sawyer(1876) had been a huge success, and the public was enthusiastically awaiting Twain’s newest installment, a sequel to the escapades of Tom and his friend Huck. It was set to be published in time for Christmas in 1884. But in late November, someone in the publishing house of Charles L. Webster and Company realized something that had escaped the notice of Webster, the writer William Dean Howells, and Twain himself when they looked over the proofs: Somewhere along the way, someone had tinkered with the illustration of Uncle Silas on page 283, making it look like he was indecently exposing himself. Two hundred and fifty copies of the book had already been sent out, as advance reader’s copies; but 30,000 more were printed and ready for people who had ordered the book on subscription. The publishing house had to make a new plate, then go through every printed copy, cutting out the offending picture and replacing it with a cleaned-up illustration. Eventually it was printed, and for readers who had pre-ordered a book, there were several editions available. There was a regular cloth-bound book in either olive green or blue, there was a sheepskin leather binding, or a sumac-tanned goatskin with marbled edges. Prices ranged from $2.75 to $4.25.


  8. Sorry, but I believe I found another error even though I haven’t received my copy (hopefully, Thursday!), yet. I was looking (okay, drooling) over Amazon’s “Look Inside” when I noticed Kolby Kirk’s name is reversed in the table of contents. Is this true with the actual copy? I agree with the others who believe this copy will be worth more because of its defects. I still can’t wait to receive my copy.

  9. Mistakes are the good parts, right? Now I can say I have one of the ‘special limited effed-up’ editions.

    Adoring this book. Thank you for making it. It’s so fun to meet all these people, and the videos are a real treat too.

  10. Ha ha I love it. Like many others here I was wondering how I had missed this term and was looking it up when this explanation came up. Don’t take it out. It’s a talking point.

  11. Well, here I am trying to figure out “pare watercolors” and I still don’t know what was meant. “Pure” or “Pan”? Or nothing; the word was just dropped in?

  12. I happen to have this first Edition (and other of your books). I don’t mind the error, now I think of it as a special edition. Danny, this book is a great collection of artwork! I have used literally a magnifier to watch every single detail on the illustrations! I don’t want to miss anything!

  13. Thanks for the explanation. I couldn’t wait to find buy and play with some new art material!!! Figured “pure watercolor” was changed to “pare watercolor”–I used to be a proofreader before computers.

  14. Oh, I thought it was an american phrase for watercolour pans;-)! Great new word!

    I love the book and I am just reading it ftom cover to cover. The only thing that bothers me is that it seems like all of the artists are artist by profession, having an education in art and design. Very terrifying for an amateur to try to do something similar. For your next book ( and please go on since all your books are great) perhaps you can bring in some good amateur sketchers, so we mortals can see that sketching can be done even without an art education?
    But still, the book IS very inspiring!!!

    • I’m very glad that you’re enjoying the book. However, a number of the contributors, myself included, are not professional artists. And if you look at my previous book, an illustrated life, you will find even more “amateurs”

      • Oh, so sorry, it was stupid of me to say so, as I had only read half of the book !
        It is very inspiring, and I long for having such courage as these artists have, to sketch in public. But then I come from a country ( Sweden) where drawing and arts in general is not encouraged among amateurs. So different in Britain, where every village seems to have an art group and it is accepted to draw and paint in public even if you are not a professional! Is it the same in the USA?
        But saying that, I was so happy to find Nina Johansson in your book, she is setting a very good example for sketchers in Sweden, she is such a good artist and has a really nice blog too!
        So maybe this summer will find me, with my back firmly to a wall, out there beginnig to sketch :-)

        • I live in Savannah, Georgia, home of Savannah College of Art and Design, an internationally known school, yet I never see anyone in the Historic District sketching or painting at an easel. Just tourists with waist packs sweating or riding around in trolleys. Do the students stay in studios all day? I always attract attention when I sit on a park bench to draw, like I’m part of the tour scene! Not rude, but interrupts my concentration (and I need to concentrate).

          Danny, I haven’t seen your other books but I find the latest one to be a complement to the Urban Sketchers book, which has more info on the art, but limited info on the artists. Wonderful to learn more about their lives and approaches to travel.

        • Perhaps the art students are indoors, doing conceptual art? The purpose of most modern art schools seems nowadays not to learn techniques but are more into performances and conceptual art.

        • You have a point, as many students I meet (lots of them work in restaurants or the art supply stores) are majoring in sequential art, computer design, and similar studio based areas. But surely they all have to start with basic drawing? Or maybe, like me, they are annoyed by the ever increasing number of tourists and stay indoors.

  15. Well, here’s a thing. Just enjoying a read of your book and came across “pare watercolours”. I thought “I wonder what that means” and looked it up on google. And there you are, the author himself, with the answer. I quite like the term “pare watercolours” though. I was looking at Prashant Miranda’s work and thought that “pare” meant the minimalist application of watercolour to the drawing… as in “pared down” to the minimum. Maybe we should adopt it as a valid art term….. you could include it in a glossary at the back of your next edition.

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