The first project of Semester 2 has been a slow one, mainly due to getting sleep patterns back on track and attempting to throw myself back into the routine of working from a brief. With the story of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde I was to illustrate the tale by using a ‘Pictorial Narrative’, following this I proceeded to list everything and anything that the story could be presented as. This included, apothecary labels, brain scans, x-ray images, prescriptions, heart monitors, coins, playing cards and several others. Settling on apothecary labels, I was dodging between a few different ideas involving glass bottles, poster prints and an interactive paint and wax concept, which even I admit would’ve been biting off a bit more than I could chew.
Proceeding to put together a mock-up of a 19th century medicine label, inspired by visuals of those that would go traveling to different towns to sell their ‘Wondrous Fix-all Lotion’, it was their use of vocabulary which interested me most. Any and all over-positive words would be used to document all the great things about this latest substance, but how much of it was true? Could a medicine really fix all your mental and physical problems in spectacular fashion? After mulling over this idea with tutors and peers, I decided to look at alternative ways of telling the story, stumbling across 19th century hand-billed posters which used mainly different sized/weighted typography to promote some sort of show.
What was apparent when trying out this technique for myself was how such a simple effect of putting together different typefaces of all sizes created such an over-powering look, almost forcing you to take note of all the Super Fantastic Wonderful and Terrific things that are being showcased. It’s a style that I believe it fits this project perfectly as people are familiar with posters like this, whether it’s been modernised to promote a film, or for such things as a traveling circus or play.
Using the type to conceptualize the story, I’ve specifically chosen which phrases to make large, bold and with exaggerated vocabulary to showcase the positive sides of the Jekyll and Hyde tale, those which are visible to everyone and can be shared with the public, while on the contrary the almost ‘hidden’ statements are much smaller and placed in such a way that it’s not visible at first glance the horrifying parts of the story, and upon closer inspection reveal the truly dark side of the piece.
Further expansion is going to go into this print, a few brainwaves have cropped up on how I can improve the overall piece and move onto litho-printing the design, which in my opinion will give it a much more traditional look and is a lot more enjoyable than a straight digital print.