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Looking for Love by Manuela Amey: A Tale of Perseverance

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240x190mm Zines
4pp Cover onto 240gsm Uncoated
Matt laminated to the outer
74 inside pages onto 115gsm Uncoated
Black and White print throughout
Trimmed, collated and perfect bound.

The Quest for Authentic Love ?

Manuela Amey’s zine, “Looking for Love,” is a black-and-white visual odyssey that explores the complexities of love and relationships. It’s a parody of personal ads, but it’s also a deep dive into the human psyche, asking what it means to be loved for who you truly are—flaws and all.

Our Favourite Job of the Year

Hands down our favourite job of the year so far is this awesome FMP. Brilliantly photographed, unbelievably creative and unapologetically honest. It follows Manuela as she traverses the UK and Yorkshire looking for love and then concludes…it’s just better to chat to your mates, eat a bowl of porridge and think about climbing a tree.

Brilliant black and white photography all the way through with a focus on Manuela’s hand drawn and hand painted signage. It’s just an awesome, engaging book at unique custom print size.

If you’re going to do an FMP this year or next year, this is the benchmark. We love it!

Author Bio: Meet Manuela Amey ?

Manuela Amey is a final year BA Fine Art student at the University of Leeds. Her work was showcased in the BA Fine Art Degree Show 2023, titled “Can you let us in?” The show explored themes such as domesticity, social sustainability, migration, identity, and femininity. Manuela’s project stands out as a bold statement on love and self-acceptance.

Journey: From Concept to Print ?️

From the initial glimpse of the email conversation, Manuela Amey is discussing her unique art series titled ‘Looking 4 Love’. She provides a brief description of her project, which involves a parody of personal ads from newspapers, presented through black & white film photographs with corresponding text.

We’ll further delve into the conversation to capture the essence of the interactions, Manuela’s aspirations for her final major project, and how Ex Why Zed provided solutions and support.

The email conversation between first time self-publisher Manuela Amey and Ex Why Zed unfolds as follows:

  1. Passionate Expression: Manuela began with an evocative description of her series ‘Looking 4 Love’, offering glimpses into her creative journey. Her project, a fusion of film photography, written text, and self-portraiture, sought to satirise personal ads from newspapers. Through her work, she explored themes of love, adoration, and self-acceptance, aiming for ‘A5 Final Major Project printing’.
  2. Ex Why Zed’s Expertise: Mike responded with enthusiasm, presenting Ex Why Zed as a specialist in ‘student book printing. He provided resources, like their Zine Printing portfolio and the definitive Zine Printing Guide, to inspire and educate Manuela. His detailed quote showcased Ex Why Zed’s capabilities, tailored to suit Manuela’s vision of ‘creative book printing’.
  3. Collaborative Dance: The following exchanges highlighted the intricacies of the print process. Mike meticulously pointed out specific technical details, ensuring the best possible outcome for Manuela’s ‘student book print company illustration’. While there were minor setbacks, such as colour discrepancies and file submissions, the duo’s synergy ensured a smooth flow.
  4. Print Transformation: Mike kept Manuela updated on the printing progress and even provided specific delivery timings. This punctuality and precision assured Manuela that she had chosen the right partner for her ‘A5 Final Major Project printing’.
  5. Gratitude and Reception: Upon receiving her printed project, Manuela was overwhelmed with gratitude. She expressed immense appreciation for Mike’s unwavering support and expertise throughout the journey.

To encapsulate, Manuela Amey’s burning desire to materialise her artistic introspection into ‘A5 Final Major Project printing’ found the perfect partner in Ex Why Zed. Their harmonious collaboration was a testament to the magic of merging art with expertise. This narrative left many budding artists pondering, “Where can I print a final major project?” as they dreamt of a similar transformative journey.

Monochrome Marvel—Where Simplicity Meets Sophistication ?

In a world saturated with colour, Ex Why Zed took a daring step back into the realm of black and white, delivering a publication that’s a masterclass in minimalist design. The 240x190mm book is an ode to simplicity, yet it packs a punch that’s hard to forget. ??

Print Specifications

For the tech aficionados, this gem came with a 4pp cover on 240gsm uncoated paper, matt laminated to the outer for that premium feel. The 74 inside pages were printed on 115gsm uncoated paper. The black and white print throughout is a statement, not a limitation. ?

Leeds Author’s Style ?️

The author’s style is refreshingly straightforward. It’s a no-frills approach that aligns perfectly with the monochromatic theme, proving that less can indeed be more.

Subject Matter ?

A deep dive into the various facets of human experiences, this publication doesn’t need colours to make its point.

Visual Aesthetics ?

The visuals are a monochrome dream. The design choices are calculated to maximise the impact of each page, even without the crutch of colour.

Typography ?️

The typography is clean, sleek, and tailored to enhance readability. It’s a beautiful example of how text can carry a design when executed skill fully.

Colour Palette ?

Or rather, the lack thereof. The black and white scheme serves a purpose—drawing attention to the content and design without distractions.

Orientation & Binding Style ?

The 240x190mm orientation complements the book’s content, giving it a unique form factor. And let’s not forget the perfect binding that ensures the book not only looks good but feels good in the hand.

Reader Appeal ?

This isn’t a book you merely read; it’s a book you experience. The monochromatic design taps into a primal sense of aesthetic appreciation that’s universally relatable.

Actionable Printing Insights ?️

Inspired to create your own black and white masterpiece? Here’s how:

  1. Uncoated Paper: Stick with uncoated paper to give a raw, authentic feel.
  2. Matt Lamination: It adds a subtle sheen without overpowering the design.
  3. Clean Typography: When colour is absent, typography becomes the hero.
  4. Purposeful Monochrome: Use black and white to highlight, not limit, your content.


Ex Why Zed has outdone themselves yet again. This time, by embracing the power of simplicity through a monochromatic lens. It’s a publication that challenges norms while setting new standards in the print industry. ?

Your Next Creative Adventure Awaits! ?

Inspired by Manuela’s journey? Ex Why Zed can bring your creative vision to life, too. Check out Manuela’s other works and get started on your own project today!

Ready for a Quote?

We hope you find this case study inspirational.

For more information on this book or to discuss your upcoming project, do get in touch on:
hello@exwhyzed.com01206 766647
Ex Why Zed makes self publishing a truly pleasurable experience!
Brilliant communication from start to finish. Mike had endless patience for the many questions we asked. The guides provided were easy to follow and super helpful (the video guides are a must watch too). Our order of hardback illustrated children's books was delivered expertly packaged and on time. As for the finished product itself - stunning - a real joy to finally hold, beautifully made and perfectly printed! We couldn't have asked for more. Well, we did - we instantly placed an order for paperback children's colouring books too, which we are equally as happy with. Look forward to working with Ex Why Zed again in the future.
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