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The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseni

NK Motion Animation

NK Motion (www.nkmotion.com) has made an animation of my drop cap - this was a super fun collaboration, and a experiment for both of us. Would love some feedback on it.

You can check out the video here -

http://vimeo.com/80962434

02/12/13

Thanks for the really helpful feedback. I have done a couple of last tweaks to my chosen cover and I have mocked it up as a book cover.

I think this is my final drop cap, I am pretty happy where I have got to but I am always open to feedback so let me know what you think and if anything needs to be changed.

18/11/13 Development of Vector and Colours

After some really great feedback I have developed my dropcap a bit further. I have fattened up the strokes to make the letter a bit stronger. In a couple of options I have also added a bit more detail and pattern to the letter, I would like some feedback on this as whenever I add more detail I worry it is ruining the simplicity and clarity of the letter, and by adding more detail the letter may get lost.

I have also experiemented with different colours, tending to lean towards the teal greens an azure blues often seen in islamic mosaics. I like the idea keeping a muted background with highlights of brighter colour. Any feedback on which option looks best would be great.

Creating a Cover

I have started developing my drop cap in illustrator, put in on a cover to see it in context, and am exploring different colour option. I would like to use earthy colours as I feel this relates to the country of Afghanistan the author describes in the book.

I would love some feedback on whether my letter should be more detailed. i was tempted to ad some embellishments and shading, but am wondering whether keeping it simple is the best idea.

Going Digital!!

I have begun to vectorize my sketches and this is the black and white vector.

Sketch Development

After some discussion and feedback I have begun to develop my sketches further.

I am still exploring the aesthetics of Islamic Calligraphy, in particular Naskh script, and I have also combined the concept of the kite and I am hoping I can successfull merge these two ideas.

These two sketches are developed from one of my calligaphic experiments, the second one is wider and the tail of the kite has more emphasis - I wonder if this is distracting from the 'K'?? I still don't think the arm of the K is quite right, i need to work on it a bit.

Any feedback would be great!

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Brainstorming

I first read this book years ago and it was one of the most moving stories I have read.

The country, history, people and culture were completely foreign to me and I though it was a fascinating insight.

The story is at times horrific, brutal and sad, but there are also strong themes of friendship, family, love and survival. It is beautifully descriptive, I am looking forward to reading it again and seeing what I can create.

NOVEMBER 13 - Ideation and Rough Sketches

The Kite Runner is set in Afghanistan and America and explores the relationship between a wealthy Afghan boy and his servant who is the same age as him. The book covers a time period where Afghanistan goes from being peaceful to completely war torn.

I have begun to explore three concepts, all at very rough sketch stage at the moment, I have uploaded all my notes and rough sketches. Any feedback would be greatly appreciated.

CONCEPT 1:

Kite Fighting is a small but crucial part of the book. It is where Amir and Hassan his servant come together like brothers and it is where Amir turns his back on Hassan in a time of need. It is a counterpoint in the story, if Amir had behaved differently the story Hassans life would have been much different.

This concept explores the ideas of kites described as "paper sharks roaming for prey" "they fell from the sky like shooting stars with brilliant rippling tails"

I think the arm and leg of the letter 'K' could evoke the "brilliant rippling tails" of the kites.

I do wonder if using a Kite theme is too obvious and a bit of a default.

CONCEPT 2:

The author describes in detail both the luxury and poverty seen in Afghanistan in the 80's. The main character Amir grew up in wealthy surroundings. Mosaic patterns, Islamic architecture and gold threaded tapestries are mentioned throughout.

This concept explores the idea of the letter 'K' being in a mosaic patterns, i imagine greens, golds and blues being uses as these colours are described in the book.

My concern with this concept is that wealth in Afghanistan only occurs in the beginning of the book, later war torn Afghanistan and the brutal things that happen bring visions of crumbling buildings, rocks, dust and poverty so I wonder if this is not a suitable idea in that it does not encompass the whole book.

CONCEPT 3:

The main character Amir is a writer and has been writing in journels since he was a small child. He is always trying to seek his fathers approval through writing. He is of the Pashtun ethnic group who speak Pashto. Naskh script employs the Pashto alphabet, a modified form of the Persian alphabet which is derived from the Arabic alphabet. There are also several references to religion throughout the book and Naskh script is what the Qu'ran is written in.

For this concept I want to explore the aesthetics of Naskh script which is what Amir would write all his stories in and the language he would read all his books in.

I feel this idea embodies the whole book which is Amir telling his story. His last communication with Hassan is by a letter, learning to read and write was a huge achievement for Hassan and he would have learnt in this script.

This idea is a bit of a challenge as I don't actually want to write in Naskh Script but create an English letter that embodies it's aesthetic but I think it could be really beautiful.

I have been experimenting with how I might be able to combine features of the Naskh Script into an English 'K'.

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