These were my first final designs for a front cover of the book. I knew that I had still wanted to keep the front cover colourful and have a graphical, handmade look to it. As well as this, I still knew that I wanted to include symbols and objects that represent a character instead of revealing the actual characters.
I had managed to get some feedback on my illustrations and they thought that there was so much going on that it drew attention away from certain things in the cover, so I began to try and narrow it down a bit and these were what I came up with.
I thought that this image looked much better but it didn’t look like a front cover, even with text added to it. I think it was something about the composition and how each smaller image had straight edges that had to align otherwise it wouldn’t look right. I then chose a different illustration to try and turn into a cover and eventually picked the one next to it. It took a while to get the type right and how it should be positioned, here are a few that I thought worked the strongest.
These are the other illustrations that I came up with that were developed from previous workshops and idea sketches. I’m quite happy with how they turned out and glad that I used colour but also balanced with light and dark as well as making it so there isn’t too much going on. These illustrations are in order of the narrative of the book.
The small pictures that I made are a continuation of experimenting with collage. What I think worked well was smearing blue and white paint together to create water like textures and then cutting them out into water drop shapes and wave shapes, I did a similar thing with other collage pieces, but with different media. I used lots of colour because I wanted to represent the vibrant colours of Indian culture. I found a few images on Pinterest that could describe this as well as be used for references for other ideas.
The Victorian Gentlemen’s Self-Defense Toolkit – article from wordpress
Houseboat on Nageen Lake, Kashmir, Srinagar, India 160 – Photo from Flickr
Kashmir Valley, India – Saved from pineasy.net
Found on an article from everythingfab.tumblr.com
Hazratbal Mosque at Sunset on Dal Lake, Srinagar, Kashmir – Saved from Zenfolio
With this being said, the actual story is quite dark and depressing, so maybe my next step is to create a contrast of light and dark or create something that has balanced or limited colour. What I also think works well is the combination of symbols and objects that relate to the story but hopefully not giving too much away.
As well as this, I took some time to find some artists that had inspired me to create these experimented images, especially David Shillinglaw and Jean-Michel Basquiat. This is found inside the word document that I attached – artist-research
Today I learnt about the structure of narrative. I also learnt how different viewpoints or frames can describe the key stages of narrative. I wrote and sketched ideas for these stages but I didn’t have enough time to create the last aspect, so I am currently working on that in my own time.
Although these images aren’t very polished, they gave me great ideas for visual drama, which can be used in my book cover. They also gave me new ideas for composition and how abstract symbols can be placed to describe the scene. Another thing that I’ve learnt is that an image that is more symbolic and abstract can be more visually interesting, instead of trying to describe the whole scene in one picture.
Today I’ve looked at images from books that had examples of object, location and character, and how the images can be seen through the lens of narrative. I did this by analysing the images and trying to figure out what can be seen, what’s happening, what it is about etc. Whilst I was doing this, I was thinking about how these completely different and unrelated images could cross over to create a whole new narrative. This session was a good introduction to how I can use the library for different types of research other than just books, for example things like films, magazines and websites. I hope to research further into things that keep me interested and inspired to help me progress and think about how my work can develop.
Today our task was to produce a series of 5 images that were inspired by my chosen story. I chose to focus mainly on the topic of people. I did this because the story (The Prophet’s Hair) described the characters in interesting ways which made it easy for me to visualise them but also leave room for my own imagination and interpretation. I had also searched images on Pinterest that I used as references for images that I wanted to create.
Lake in Srinagar – Article from guardian.co.uk
Dal Lake, Srinagar, Kashmir by Steve McCurry
The 5 images that I made needed to create narrative tension. Whilst I was creating these images, I had discussed with the course tutors about how I could experiment further using the first few images that I had. This encouraged me to develop my ideas further and create work that was a bit more visually interesting.