Projects

O B L I V I O N I – A wordless picture book

Jess_Mason_1Jess_Mason_2Jess_Mason_3

These three illustrations form part of a 32 page, wordless picture book.

It tells the story of a girl who discovers a fantastical city hidden behind a secret passage within a book shop she visits, ‘Oblivioni’ (Latin for forgotten) is the city of unfinished stories. This place houses all the characters of stories that have yet to be completed.

The inhabitants of this city repeat the same mundane routine day after day with no ambition or aspirations until either their stories are completed (in which case they leave the city) or until they gradually fade away into nothingness because they have been forgotten by the mind that created them.

Once in the city the girl meets a small boy named Timothy Hubbard who is very close to being forgotten (he is almost transparent) and together they set out on a mission to find his ‘happy ending’ which they are convinced can be found in the bird-like books flying around the city.

However, as the children set off on their adventure something unexpected happens, Timothy gradually becomes more visible. They realise that the key to his survival and future happiness is down to Timothy Himself, not an outside source.

As soon as the flyaway book is captured Timothy writes his own ending and is transported within the book to spend the rest of his days happily in the story he wrote (with a little help from his new friend) for himself.

H I R E A T H- Picture book

full book cover hiraethjess_mason_1_jess_mason_2_jess_mason_3_

These three illustrations form part of a 32 page, picture book.

These illustrations form part of a story about a boy who is feeling fed up with his lot. Having recently moved into a new town away from his friends and with a new baby sister he feels a little left out, so he decides to embark on a worldwide adventure in a hot air balloon that he made himself in search of a new (and better) home.

He travels everywhere from the Taj Mahal to Space itself however whilst traveling over the amazon rainforest a storm arrives and a bolt of lightning hits his balloon and he is thrown into the rainforest and forced to continue his adventure on foot.

However, as the days pass he begins to feel a little home sick and eventually decides that it’s time to go home. He walks through the dessert, up a snowy mountain and into a dark forest upon which point he can walk no more. However, just as he thought all hope was lost he looks up into the sky to see it filled with hot air balloons and within these balloons are all of his friends and family. So in the end he didn’t find home but instead, home found him.

 

H I S  D A R K  MA T E R I A L S – Illustrated map series

MAPSwitch map websiteSvalbard featured image

 

A series of illustrated maps based on Phillip Pullmans ‘His Dark Materials’  This project was an investigation into illustrated maps and how they can not only enhance narrative but tell stories of their own.

My research into medieval and renaissance maps had a huge influence over the way I designed and created this series, the majority of contemporary maps disregard cartouche and embellishment where as I embraced it and applied my own visual language (which is quite contemporary) to create something unique and interesting. This combination of old and new fits the narrative of the ‘His Dark Materials’ well, as the story is set in multiple worlds all in varying stages of development.

In each of these worlds Pullman has imagined there are lots of different cultures, species and places and I tried to choose a selection of these to illustrate that was varied (so not two maps would look the same) but also from parts of the story that are exciting and poignant, as my main aim was to enhance the words on the page and to create a sense of place visually which would ultimately add a new dimension to the narrative and a sense of authenticity.

I wanted the maps to reflect the people or place on which the map was based, the colours I chose for each map were reflective of the climate, culture and mood, in the beginning I was concerned that by using multiple different palettes the final series would lack visual continuity however I found that by using repeating elements such as the same style of lettering this was avoided and that in fact they do work harmoniously together.

In regard to the matter of storytelling through maps I used different approaches for each map, in ‘The Journey to the Fens’ I used vignettes to show Lyra’s activities as she travelled, In ‘Bridge to the Citagazze’ the composition helps to show the direction in which the man and his ‘Deamon’ are travelling, In the world map titled ‘His Dark Materials’ there are references to various aspects of the story in the cartouche surrounding the globes. The narrative element was further enhanced by the use of characters such as Lyra who appears on a few times on the maps.