• CategoryBranding, Print
  • ClassIdentity and Brand Design
  • DateSpring 2018

The Black Dog

"Choose an object that represents your identity as an individual. Produce a 32-page 8in x 8in self-cover book. The illustrations should tell a story that reveals your identity. Use any style or mode of illustration that fits you and your story, but maintain stylistic consistency."

I found this project particularly challenging. The idea of choosing a single item to represent my identity was daunting, and the constraint of 32 pages was both too much and not enough. I eventually settled on a black dog – inspired by Winston Churchill’s metaphor for his struggle with depression.

Illustration has never been my strong suit but I wanted to stray away from the realism of photography, so this became a difficult yet fulfilling exercise in discovering my illustration style. I used a colour sparingly in the otherwise greyscale colour palette to maintain visual cohesion alongside the line drawings.

The type style is consistent throughout all aspects of the book, featuring a first-person voice that reflects my own. The rigid typesetting is a juxtaposition to the fluid style of the line drawings and a representation of my often robotic perspective.

The variation in appearances of the dog and human figures are to illustrate the spectrum of mental illness – every person does not experience the same dog.

View the book.