By Mahreen Khan
The buildings of Sag Harbor may be splashed with new colors in a few weeks when Jake Rose, a summer resident of Greenport, releases his second village-centric coloring book, “Color Sag Harbor.”
The first of Mr. Rose’s books was “Color Greenport,” which he created in just six weeks and released on August 20, 2016, to support Community Action Southold Town (CAST), a not-for-profit organization that provides low-income Southold residents with basic needs. Now, Mr. Rose is adding the final touches to his “Color Sag Harbor” book, coordinating with freelance illustrators stationed as far away as India, and ensuring that his 50-plus pages of text and line drawings are ready to hit the shelves by the third week of July.
“I just really, really loved being in Greenport,” Mr. Rose said. “It was a way to give back to the community, and it’s given me a better appreciation of country life. After seeing this, I wanted to replicate the success from ‘Color Greenport’ for Sag Harbor.”
The 22-year-old graduated two months ago from Drew University in Madison, New Jersey, where he developed his interest in historical landmarks, architecture and photography.
He said he was inspired in part by his father’s own effort to produce a coloring book and experiment with 3-D printing. Of his reasons for doing a second book, he said “I’ve been to Sag Harbor a couple times so it was just a natural extension.”
From hiring freelance artists capable of producing line drawings, conducting research, producing the cover, table of contents, maps, notes, thumbnails, back cover, thank-you letter and finding retail locations that would be willing to carry his product, Mr. Rose had to familiarize himself with the financial and organizational ends of the business as well as hone his Photoshop, InDesign and photography skills. His father, Ron, said the project evolved in ways he hadn’t imagined.
“I think Jake, somewhat, has found a niche that’s not being served,” he said. “Right now, adult coloring books are very popular, but I think his approach is to develop a history book that celebrates the community, that just happens to be a coloring book.”
Freelance illustrator Ashmita Nandy served as the main artist behind “Color Greenport” and “Color Sag Harbor,” with just a couple of other artists involved in each project. But Ms. Nandy lives in India, meaning that she and Mr. Rose must coordinate their work down to every photograph and line drawing via email.
“I have been a freelance illustrator for two years now,” Ms. Nandy said in an email. “I’d say that both of us have our own ideas put into the illustrations, but it’s Jake’s ideas essentially that lead to the final product. Since I’m unable to visit the actual locations I rely heavily on his inputs and I believe the drawings ultimately benefit from that.”
The ultimate goal for Mr. Rose is to turn his interest into a viable business. While “Color Greenport” is on stands at a couple of Greenport shops, it has not been widely marketed – yet. The father-son team will be traveling the east coast and creating a coloring book based on their travels in the coming months. Mr. Rose is already well into a third book, “Color North Fork,” and is in the process of developing coloring postcards for both the North Fork and Riverhead.