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What is the What

Hello! So this book deals with the Lost Boys of Sudan, and their survival through Sudan's brutal civil war. Reading the book, the protagonist copes and survives the ordeal with the help of others around him. My sketch of twigs formed/bound to make an E symbolizes this idea. I also chose to use twigs because they are gritty and organic. The book mentions the wood the boys would have to scavenge in the forest to build temporary houses in their refugee camps, and their bodies are often described as twigs as most of them were so malnourished. I also like the idea of the protagonist having to constatly build for himself. Build a home, build a new life, etc. 

One of the issues I can forsee is how organic to make the twigs in illustrator. Keep grittyness or simplify into massive shapes? I guess doing a drawing of the twigs like this seems more like an illustration to me rather than a letterform. Which may be good and bad? I dunno. Any thoughts or feedback are most welcome. Thanks! Attached is my sketch and also some reference of twigs and branches etc.


Okay, here are the digital versions I've come up with. I did the shapes in Illustrator and rendered the twigs in photoshop. For the twigs I stayed in the same 2 color hues for them, so in total it's about 3 colors. Any feedback welcomed. I tried them with a black, grey, and red background. 

Hi everyone, much thanks for all the feedback. I agree the black does work best. There are parts of the book where he described walking at night and how it was so dark it was almost pitch black. Here's the E without any text:

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