Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Some very "Sensible" illustrations

The latest project I worked on for Advanced Illustration was a book cover illustration and other little icons for the classic Jane Austen novel Sense & Sensibility. If you know me, you know how big a fan of Miss Austen I am. I haven't read all of her books yet, but I'm working on it. I have seen many of the BBC/film adaptations, though. Most of which I truly enjoy. I may be 23, but in my opinion, there is nothing like staying in on a Friday night with a cup of tea and Jane Austen film...especially if the week hasn't been all that great. But I'm getting off track here.

So I did these editorial illustrations and during the process, I realized that Sense & Sensibility, which was the first book Jane Austen published was published in 1811--200 years ago, this year! So I thought to myself, I could make this like a special edition 200th anniversary edition! Well, that's just what I did.

The cover:
I used a photo reference for the two young women (who, if you are familiar with the story, are the Dashwood sisters), but tried to keep my style present. I like using variations in inked lines and little details as well. Then of course, I added the splashy (though ever-so-slightly more rendered) watercolor. All the text was hand-written by me on separate sheets of paper then added digitally. During the critique, it was said that the "font" for "Jane Austen" should be the same font as the book title. Not sure if I agree with that or not.

Inside Title Page:

Again, I used that same hand-written font here, but since this would be on the inside of the book, I kept the colors minimal. Since it would be a special edition book, I thought I should at least do something a little, well, special to it. So I designed the splashy silhouette icons of the two sisters. I tried to make them reflect each of their personalities. Elinor (blue) is more grounded and sensible, while Marianne (magenta) thinks with her heart and is a hopeless romantic.

Back Cover:

I used the silhouettes here too, but I have to agree with what the class said during the critique. They said that the silhouettes would look better if they had been ghosted behind the text. Looking back, I should have done that. But I like all the other parts. Yes the "S" is the hand-written font...and no that is not the actual ISBN for this book.

And the chapter headers meant for specific chapters:
 Norland--the family home of the Dashwoods before their father dies and they have to move out because homes could only be passed on from father to son. Aren't you glad it's not like that anymore?

 Barton Cottage--where the Dashwoods move after they leave's a pretty big deal because they had to basically had to travel all the way across England to get there....why am I such a nerd?

A bonnet... why did I add that digital drop shadow? Why oh why did you do that, Emily of the past?

 A letter and quill pen, this one is probably my favorite of the bunch. It was originally two separate icons, but I mashed them together in photoshop. I just love that letter. I wish someone would send me a letter with violet petals in it. How sweet would that be. Never mind that this was supposed to be the letter Willoughby writes to Marianne after they "break up".

Anyway, let me know what you guys think! I need feedback, or I won't flourish.