Something Wicked This Way Comes | Skillshare Projects

Amber Stanton




Something Wicked This Way Comes

***UPDATE 11.27.13***

I have narrowed down my concepts based on outside opinions. I decided to go in an vectorize concepts three and four, with four being my first iteration. I thought there was a lot of story there, so it would be a good option to try out for the drop cap. 

I am still in the early stages of vector, so I have yet to do much with color or building on the letterforms, just trying to get general shapes nailed down. I want to continue to work on the shadow and beef up the letterform a bit. I think I can add some further heft (especially on the archs of the b) to the letter later down the line when I'm building layers but I want to make sure the general structure is there first. I also want to redraw the two characters going through the counter of the B. Still lots of work to do on this one, but I think its coming along.

What do you all think? Any thoughts or feedback I can use moving forward. 

Thanks! -A

***UPDATE 11.25.13***

I have been swamped as of late but have been reading my book and sketching some thoughts down.

This book in summary showcases the juxtaposition between good and evil. These two teenage boys represent two very different personalities. Jim Nightshade is dark, brooding, and lives for adventure and spontenaity. Will Holloway is the opposite. He is cautious, thinks things through before taking that first step.

The story follows their struggle as they face a fantastical evil that comes to town in the form of a circus/side show attraction. I won't spoil the book (entirely) as it's something to read if you feel so inclined.

Anyway, here is the list/notes I came up with as I read along with the book.

From that you can see I've highlighted a few key ideas. One of the biggest ideas in the book revolves around the circus itself...primarily the carousel. I tried to integrate that in a few of my rough sketches. I'll go through them below.


This sketch was one of the first thoughts I had. There's a lot of play in the book about time, so I tried to think of some interesting ways to represent that. I chose an "S" for this sketch as I felt it gave the most leeway to representing the movement of time. I wanted to show the progression of time in some way as the shape of the letterform progresses.   I wanted to show it as the arch of the s move forward, the letterform would crack and age, but for the lower arch that goes back, I though it could remain young and thriving. I tried to show this through a vine, but I feel if I went for this concept I would need to reverse the progression to make it more accurate to the book.


This one is similar to the concept of aging, just a different take. I'm not necessariy feeling the letterform for the one on the left, but I like the idea of sand in the hourglass ticking away at time, and the letter "B" worked really nicely for that (you'll notice the rest of the sketches utilize the B for Bradbury's name).


This third concept deals with a portion of the book in which various characters walk into a mirror maze, which is more than just an infinite hall of images. The maze actually depicts what the participant wants to see, what they feel will make them happy. It ends up all being a ruse by the circus of course, but its a big part of the book. I think there could be something with making the letterform into a maze for the sketch on the right, in theory it could be foil stamp on the cover. Same goes for the concept on the left of the shattered mirror. I really like this concept as it takes place towards the end of the book when the boys defeat Mr. Dark.


I particularly enjoy the concept for the first one dealing with shadows of the boys going creating the circus/characters in themselves. It plays of the good vs. evil, dark vs. life theme in this book very nicely I think. I think the letterform could be worked out more and add in more detail/whimsy of the circus itself to fit the book even more. 


This is a terrible drawing, but I thought I'd give it a whirl (check out that pun I just threw in there!). I thought the structure of the letter could play up the carousel itself if detail. This one is not as dark as the others in theme, but I still feel it works conceptually with the book. The carousel is meant to draw patrons in, to get them to want to take a ride on the carousel, so that the circus can gain its power through their inevitable misery. I think this concept could work to show that attraction/whimsy.


This last concept deals with a sentence in the book that speaks about patrons attraction to certain issues in their life. It was analogy speaking of Jim Nightshade and his desire to ride the carousel to get older so he could move on with his life and not be a kid anymore, despite the immeasurable cost and misery it could cause him. The book talks about how his desire to ride the carousel was so great, it did not matter to him this cost, he just saw the benefit of what could be in his mind, much like how a moth is drawn to the flame, despite the fact that they will get burned. I thought this was a really poignant thought in the book, so I thought I could play off that concept in the letterform itself.

I'd like to go back through on a few of these and really think about different letterforms, especially to fit the period/theme of the book (circus/sideshow/etc), however I think this gives you all a good idea as to where my thought process is. 

Any ideas you all think I should move forward with and explore for final? Please let me know!


 I took about a day or two to really think on the book I wanted to do for this project. I don't know that I every really had a "favorite" book, I just know what types of stories I end up reading and getting myself entwined into for hours. 

I thought I may do a recent favorite, The Fault in Our Stars by John Green. It has a great snarky quality and a different perspective to such a deep subject. However, I still thought it may end up being too serious and romantic, which are the types of letterforms I'm usually drawn to aesthetically, so I wanted to go against that and try something different.

I finally decided on Ray Bradbury's Something Wicked This Way Comes. I almost chose his other book, The Halloween Tree, because that probably IS one of my favorite books from way back in the day, but I wanted to try something a little deeper and a more eery vibe, which I feel this book will do as I read along and begin to take notes for my drop cap concepts/sketches.

I'm excited for this! Who's with me?!


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