Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Design for a Special Book

Cover - Reworked a week ago
Some time ago last year, I took a series of workshops for the children of Shishu Mandir. The purpose of those workshops was to incorporate the illustrations made by the children into the design of a book about the institution. The book in this post is my design, created around the children's pictures. 
These are the endpapers for the book
Above and below are portraits of Hella Mundhra the inspiring founder of Shishu Mandir.
Both paintings were done by Varalakshmi, one of the students in the workshop.

Here below, is a picture of  the superstar of my workshop, Varalakshmi
She was a quiet, dignified little girl who produced bold and striking drawings
Right at the end of the last workshop, I told her I wanted a large dark green background for the cover.'Yes Ma'am' said Varalakshmi calmly. She then look a large sheet of paper and full tubes of green and black paint. As we stood around her and watched, she held both the tubes mouth down above a plate and squeezed  with both hands. Pachakk! We gasped as the entire contents of the green and black tubes landed on the plate. Then Varalakshmi calmly took a large brush, mixed the colours and started painting.
Varalakshmi painting a tree
which I incorporated into the design below.
 In the picture below is Bhuvaneshwari, another hugely talented painter.
Do you remember her beautiful tree from a previous post? 
I've used it below and the picture above is one of her painting it.
Bhuvaneshwari also created the stunning picture below.
Here are some of the other pages in the book with paintings done by different children at the workshop.

 Naagaveni has a distinct and unique style.
This is her tree from one of the exercises in the workshop.

And this is her fantastic deer below
More pages with paintings.
Since each of the stories had a unique and distinct identity, I used a separate colour for each story dictated by the story itself as well as the illustration that was used.

As you can see, the design is built around the paintings and the colours of the pages partner them.

Designing the book was fun, but it also involved a lot of thinking and a great deal of hard work (12 hours a day for a month). A project which started with workshops sometime in the middle of last year for me, ended now. This book is the result of it, inspired by the beautiful painting done by these children and it is my applause to the absolutely amazing children of Shishu Mandir.

You can read more about the workshop here>>
and here>>