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Featured in: The Best of Herff Jones 2018 Portfolio, Volume 24
Columbia Scholastic Press Association:
Florida Scholastic Press Association:
National Scholastic Press Association:
First Class Rating
Birth of An Idea
The creation and development of the 64th yearbook of Bishop Moore was the largest project I ever took on and the most radical in its history.
Following the success of the 63rd volume, You Are Here, there was pressure to step up the book even higher. By Spring of 2017, the yearbook staff was pressed to create and pitch their ideas for next year's book theme. After the voting process, several concepts were blended together.
The new editor positions were also determined around that time. The new Editor-In-Chief was appointed to Ashley, Managing Editor and Senior Editor was given to Kristina, and I received three. I became Student Life Editor, Co-Athletics Editor, and most importantly, Design Editor. Ashley and Kristina delegated with the story of the book while I managed the entire creative look of the book. We were like an iron triangle, making decisions and handing off ideas to each other.
From the ideas we had pitched, we mixed Ashley's story with Kristina'a watercolor art style choice to form a water and watercolor themed book. Later the class was asked to come up with new a title and opening story for the book. Ashley's and mine were both coincidentally named Submerged and the title stuck. Ashley took my story and combined it with hers. After the concept was finally put into stone, we were tasked with redoing our project board over the summer and reselect the colors, fonts, spread designs, and to make a cover for the book.
Over the summer we texted, FaceTimed each other, and met at a Panera Bread, trying to figure out where to take our concept next. We were constantly bouncing back and forth between fonts and colors and had no idea what our cover would like. Eventually we decided what we wanted and produced a new concept board and prepared to meet up with the rest of the staff at Yearbook Palooza.
At plaooza we discussed with everyone what our vision was and got advise from other yearbook experts. We expressed our desire to submerge our selves deeper into our school and expose people and stories that might may never have a voice. Our idea was well received, but the execution of our book and spread design needed an overhaul.
After palooza until the beginning of the school year, Ashley, Kristina, and I, worked out the remaining details of the book. Below is a collection of concepts and renders that I created, leading to the eventual final product.
Testing and refinement of the art style of the book lasted from April
to October of 2018. This period encompassed the creation of the book's
cover and early stages of the end sheets, helping define the overall style
and theme of the book.
April: First ever concept of a watercolor/paint art style designed for
the theme contest to determine next year's book.
Summer - Early August: Many samples were created and voted upon that led
to the eventual watercolor art style later used. The cover of the book
was designed during this time, inspiring many of the following artistic
August-October: Artistic choices made during the creation of the cover
shaped the overall look and feel of graphics and style of the book. New
methods were created to reduce the overall work time.
Making the cover spanned a total of four months from the end of May to
late August resulting in 10 revisions from the original cover. With continuous
feedback from Ashley and Kristina, we eventually came to the 11th iteration
of the cover, setting the tone and art style for the rest of the book.
This is technically not one of the covers designed for the theme, but
I thought it was necessary to include this cover. This cover was made for
Kristina's concept of the yearbook. At the time time, my concept was
totally non-related to watercolor. Later we combined Kristina's art
choice with Ashley's theme to create Submerged
This was my first stab at making a cover with our concept. The title was
drawn by Ashley using Notability on her iPad. I just created a simple blue
layer and applied some filters to attempt to simulate water.
After we unanimously decided the first cover need to be a watercolor based,
I tried my had at using some brushes to create an underwater gradient.
Lightening It Up
We selected a new color palette for the book and updated the cover to reflect
After looking at the 3rd cover for a while, I decided it looked a bit
too simple. I redid the cover using a greater density of watercolor splashes.
Still looking to make the cover more interesting, I took a new interpretation
to our theme and created a version of the cover where the title was literally
The Photo Cover
This was the only attempt at a photo cover for the book. It was not explored
more because we had settled with using watercolor illustrations
School Silhouette Concept
After going back and forth with other ideas, I decide to drop everything
I had already made and start completely fresh. We decided that we should
some how tie the school back into the artwork of the cover and Ashley wanted
the watercolor to be dripping. I recreated the silhouettes of the buildings
using reference photos I took during the summer. This cover greatly shaped
our selection of colors and fonts for the rest of the book.
I wanted the silhouette of the school to look like more like a city skyline.
I took out the football goal and lights because there was too much of a
gap. The buildings were rearranged and the dripping was removed.
Drips, Colors, & Islands
Ashley was very drawn to the idea of dripping watercolor and we all decided
it was looking a bit too monochrome. I spent hours on Pinterest and YouTube
to try to find a style of dripping that I liked and could actually recreate.
A day or two later, I found a piece that showed a city skyline with a swash
of colors dripping from the bottoms of the buildings.
Making It Personal
After a bit more critiquing, we updated our font preferences and decided
to create a running motif. We wanted the cursive to flow throughout the
book like a gentle wave through the ocean. The cursive I made for the cover
of the book took a long time to make in Photoshop and was never touched
again. The cursive in the rest of the book would be drawn by Ashley.
This Is It
After many changes and back and forth ideas, we finally settled on this
last cover. Nothing else had changed from the previous version other than
the colors popping a bit more.
The End Sheets
The first and last pages of a hardcover book are laminated to the back
of the cover. These pages help bind the cover to the pages. We decided
we wanted to utilize the end sheets as a table of contents and begin informing
the reader what color each section would be.
Colors and image placeholders were determined.
Line drawn to continue motif from cover. Student selection for images