MORTALITY AS It HAPPENED
A collection of works by Wendell Berry 7x10"
Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign, laser cutter (2015)
This book is a collection of works by Wendell Berry. It is designed and illustrated to convey the theme of death as a neutral kind of force—neither good or evil. Death just is. This theme is conveyed by the neutral color palette, the austere presentation of the text, and the delicate paper cut illustrations.
After reading through a variety of Wendell Berry poems, short stories, and essays, I selected a few based on the common theme of mortality. I then began to make thumbnail sketches to explore a variety of formats and sizes while also considering the kind of fonts and imagery I would use to illustrate the theme.
I ultimately decided on a long, horizontal format with a 4x3 grid. I also like the idea of incorporating cut-paper imagery, and idea inspired by the papel picado art that is so popular during Dia de los Muertos.
In order to create the final spreads, I started by laying out the text in InDesign.
Next, I printed out the spreads and made a line drawing in the white space.
I scanned the line drawings and traced them in Illustrator. Doing so allowed me to cut out the images using a laser cutter; however, since getting every image laser cut proved to be too time intensive, I chose to only get certain spreads laser cut. For the pages that were not laser cut, I used the vector drawing as a clipping mask to add different textures and create the illusion of layered paper.
I incorporated marble textures for the poems, as this texture calls to mind gravestones, emphasizing mortality. For the rest of the pages, I used watercolor textures that enhanced the soft and somber tone of the book.