Wednesday, 11 February 2009

The Curious Book Cover of Benjamin Button / IF "Time" part 2





Went to see The Curious Case of Benjamin Button last night.... too tired to write coherently now but I'll add to this post tomorrow. For now this book cover concept I just had to work up might fit as another post for this weeks IF topic of time... I'd be interested to hear peeps comments on the film and my take on the cover. I read the short story before starting this... if anyone is so inclined to compare film and book you can download Fitzgerald's scribblings here. G'night...zzzzzzzzzzzzz

Morning...well afternoon.

As I was going to say here's my take on the Curious Case of Benjamin Button book cover after seeing the film and reading the short story. I won't go and spoil anything for anyone who hasn't seen/read this yet save to say what you must already know... Ben is born old (the film and book differ slightly on how this is handled) and as he grows up he gets younger. You can probably work out the major story themes for yourself. Do see the film if you have the inclination. As you'd expect David Fincher makes a beautiful piece of work with some lovely touches. There is a great running gag I won't ruin for you... I have begun to really dislike film critics, what are they for exactly except to enjoy the sound of their own voice while they give away the story! If you want to see the film you shouldn't listen to them... if you don't want to see the film there is little point in listening to them...?! Anyway I'll get of my soap box.

Reading the short story, it feels to me there is a slightly different emphasis on Ben's narrative compared to the film. Given it is a short story his life appears more as the traditional three act structure with 'old' Ben and 'young' Ben bookending 'normal' Ben. The film (for me anyway) has more of a continuous flowing narrative... think Forrest Gump (less surprising when you find out both films share the same screen writer Eric Roth). I'm waffling... to cut a long story short (no pun inteded) I decided to take a visual cue from that 'bookending' symmetrical life... hence the paper cut Bens... If anyone is still puzzled the figures on the left with the aged paper are old/young Ben... the pristine figures on the right are young/old Ben.... simple...?! :) Not sure if it comes out on your particular monitor but the background to the cover isn't solid black, there is a subtle felt like paper in a deep burgundy/violet hue. I thought solid black a bit of a conventional cop out and not in keeping with the warm, aged theme which the movies promo mataerials so successfully capture.

I did intend to work on the text a little further. I have a thought to use hand lettering based on the font... possibly with a little button creeping in instead of the O in buttOn. I'm really very satisfied with the overall design although the placement of the authors name on the spine is perhaps a little unfortunate...

11 comments:

Jacqueline Hudon-Verrelli said...

You have so many clever ideas. I think this is great - so clear and simple. I really love it.

ArtSparker said...

Lovely (down with Kindle). I like being able to tell a book by its cover.

Atsi-Batsi said...

I love your ideas! I haven't seen the film yet but I've read the synopsis. I love how you represented reverse-aging with paper doll cut outs. Is there a reason why you use crumpled paper for the figures on the back cover?

phil said...

Hi Matt, Before I'd seen the fourth image I thought you have found an existing book cover that you like. I was very impressed when I realised it's one of yours. I can easily see this on the shelves. Nice work.

Ps. word verification: sprized

Pete, Cora, Helen... said...

Love the cover... we will probably see that in the V&A next year if there is any justice :-) I've seen the movie too, Matt. Its been a long time since I've been swept off my feet for three hours.

Chris Kennett said...

This is perfection! I love how you convey the age by simply crumpling the paper. Genius. I really enjoyed the movie, and even (whisper it)shed a little tear at the very end. Great work on the hour glasses too.

Eric Barclay said...

Brilliant design. The crumpled paper is just genius. Whatever the current book design is, yours is better.

Patrick said...

Very clever design and amazing idea. I haven't seen the movie yet (going tonight!), and I didn't need any explanation at all. This is pretty much a perfect combination of concept and design. Fantastic!

krisztina maros said...

ah... most beautiful film i've ever seen! i love so much your book cover - so simple, so touching and so expressive... my mother has an old published book by Fitzgerald and it has the same typeface like yours (i know you know) - so it adds more fitzgeraldish :) looking to this work. just like a lovely a book from home...

elizabeth said...

I love your take on this book cover. Simple, lyrical, gets the point across.

And I really enjoyed the movie. It was beautiful both visually and emotionally.

viagra online said...

Actually I hate this book so much , the worst of the year!