215

9

This Is How You Lose Her - Junot Diaz

Select your short text:

Yes-It's an opposites-attract sort of thing, it's a great-sex sort of thing, it's a no-thinking sort of thing. It's wonderful! Wonderful! Until one June day Alma discovers that you are also fucking this beautiful freshman girl named Laxmi, discovers the fucking of Laxmi because she, Alma the girlfriend, opens your journal and reads. (Oh, she had her suspicions.) She waits for you on the stoop, and when you pull up in her Saturn and notice the journal in her hand your heart plunges through you like a fat bandit through a hangman's trap. You take your time turning off the car. You are overwhelmed by a pelagic sadness. Sadness at being caught, at the incontrovertible knowledge that she will never forgive you. You stare at her incredible legs and between them, to that even more incredible pópola you've loved so inconstantly these past eight months. Only when she starts walking over in anger do you finally step out. You dance across the lawn, powered by the last fumes of your outrageous sinvergüencería. Hey, muñeca, you say, prevaricating to the end. When she starts shrieking, you ask her, Darling, what ever is the matter?

She calls you:

a cocksucker

a punk motherfucker

a fake-ass Dominican.

She claims:

you have a little penis

no penis

and worst of all that you like curried pussy.

(which really is unfair, you try to say, since Laxmi is from Guyana, but Alma isn't listening.)

Instead of lowering your head and copping to it like a man, you pick up the journal as one might hold a baby's beshatted diaper, as one might pinch a recently benutted condom. You glance at the offending passages. Then you look at her and smile your dissembling face will remember until the day you die. Baby, you say, baby, this is part of my novel.

This is how you lose her.

Read and annotate the text:

"Yes-It'a an opposites-attract sort of thing"

small, large, black, white, good, evil

"Hey, muñeca, you say"

doll, rag doll, toy, object

"You are overwhelmed by a pelagic sadness"

open sea, drown, water

"you pick up the journal as one might hold a baby's beshatted diaper, as one might pinch a recently benutted condom":

holding, releasing, losing, throwing away

Sketch ideas by hand:

Designing the cover:

The first step to creating my book cover was to find the perfect stock images. For my first concept, I purchased a few mannequins, a paper ball and a subtle grunge texture from shutterstock. I started by masking out different limbs using the path tool and refine mask to smooth out the edges.

I darkened the skin tones to make the arms and legs look more like the Dominican woman described in the book. The figure still needs more work like painting some shadow to the right arm and adding a journal on her left hand. 

Instead of setting the type with a font, I'm thinking about creating some hand drawn type so I can shape it to look like her torso.

I showed this design to a friend who said the cover may be mistaken as a weight loss book at first glance with the paper ball being a food/candy wrapper and mannequins hinting at the common female image seen at clothing stores. Unfortunately, the pink color way doesn't necessarily grab the attention of men which I feel is the books target audience.

The second concept is a bit more tricky since I have to create an underwater scene by compositing multiple images in photoshop. I found the perfect stock photo of a woman in a dress which really caught my eye. The model's racial ambiguity and the stiffness in her arms play off the doll concept well.

I am still working on making her seem like she is in a floating motion by using the puppet warp tool on her hair and dress to make them look wet/heavy.

The image also needs more bubbles and wildlife like fish or coral without making things too busy. As far as the type, I tried a dark blue color which brings out the bubbles but blends in too much to the background so I'l stick with white for now.

Render and fine-tune ideas:

Wrap a book:

Comments

Please sign in or sign up to comment.