Thursday, 22 January 2009

The Secret History v1

This is the mock-up of my book jacket for the Penguin Design Award brief for The Secret History by Donna Tartt. It isn't
how I was envisioning it at the beginning of the project, but I suppose that is only a good thing, as it shows that I've adapted and analysed the brief and my own development of the project as I went along.

It is a matt white cover, with type in members of the Fruitiger family. There is then a dust jacket in red card with ivy leaves printed on in greyscale, which sprawls over the cover, hiding some of the copy. I added a layer of sticky backed plastic to indicate a high gloss finish. It is only a partial dustjacket, a job for a laser cutter (or me with a very sharp scalpel). I wanted to represent the secrets and deception in the story through layers, so all was not obvious to the viewer on first glance. I chose white because of the snow that the second victim is hidden underneath, but also the description 'the river ran white', which stuck in my head. The ivy on the dustjacket refers to both the symbol of Bacchus, but also another line from the same passage about the ivy running up the trees before their eyes. The way it sprawls over the cover is related to this also, and causes an uncomfortable feeling. The similarity to a blood spatter could also be mentioned.

I only made the choice to go down this route a few days before
the final crit, so there are still tweaks to make on the typography and I also want to tackle the end papers etc inside. The paper stocks aren't quite right yet either, I want a very matt, maybe slightly textured stiff paper for the white, and a high gloss for the semi-dustjacket. Neil Buchannen would be proud of my application of sticky backed plastic...

Monday, 12 January 2009

I didn't know that

Foxes are one of the animals connected to the Greek god Bacchus, the study of which is a key theme in The Secret History. This is a picture of how a fox pounces on it's prey - something that looks quite ridiculous really, not very predator-like.

All I want for Christmas...

... is this book! And that is what I found under the tree on Christmas Day. One of my favourite books and a very covetable object that will take pride of place on my book shelf. Second on my list of presents was a frog shaped tape measure, I'm such a wild child.

New Year, new stuff... nearly

Well after a refreshing break its back to the studio and the drawing board (my Grandpa's old Rotring), results of which will follow shortly. During the holiday I went down to Penzance just for the heck of it and found this treasure trove of a book shop. I took some photos to help pad out my research for the Penguin book jacket competition, there were some beautiful examples of old book jackets, especially the ones without dust jackets.
Oh and happy birthday me. The big two three.