Title: Springtime in Lawrence Park cover design

Client: Fire and Ash Publishers
Date: August 2015
Tools: Illustrator CC
Format: Print
Audience: Literary/artistic consumers

Fire and Ash Publishers is a new Toronto-based independent book publisher that specializes in fiction and poetry. For their debut novel Springtime in Lawrence Park they sent a call out to artists and designers to find the perfect cover. 

As this was to be Fire and Ash’s first book, I wanted the design to speak not just to the contents of the book itself, but as a statement of the publishing house’s desired self-stylization as playful and eccentric. I wanted to build a visual story that would reflect the satire of the novel, while also existing on its own as a piece of art, rather than just a literal depiction of the contents of the book. 

In arriving at my concept for the cover of Springtime in Lawrence Park, I had spent a great deal of time on Google Maps trying to get a sense of the neighbourhood that gives the book its title. The sheer volume of maintenance and delivery trucks and vans struck me; it appeared as though, on every street, someone’s house was under construction. In my Google Maps sightseeing, I found four examples of houses whose renovations have been catalogued and archived by Google Maps Street View.

These four houses make up the eight twinned illustrations on the front and back cover of my design for Springtime in Lawrence Park. They suggest transformation as growth, but always also with a hint of anxiety, a gesture towards the potential of a sinister or undesirable past. They paradoxically mark themselves both as part of the affluent community and separate from it, their idiosyncratic designs a jarring deviation from the fabric of the neighbourhood.