For my second major Language and Letterform project, I was tasked by my professor to create an illustrated short story in the format of the Diary of a Wimpy Kid books, and similar series for middle schoolers and young children, using mainly Indesign and other Adobe softwares for the actual formatting of the book. The class started by either copying the template story of “The Capture of Father Time” or creating their own story on Google Docs or on a Word processing software, then creating drawings or designs depicting various scenes in the story (or their stories). I happened to choose the route of writing my own story and ended up writing a fantasy story about a Prince (called Korapanth the Tiger Prince) who leaves his broken, fractured kingdom amidst war between two rival countries (one ruled by his mother, the other by his father, who seceded from the mother’s kingdom), is led astray by some mystics into a foreign nation, and ends up escaping the land after having been deceived under a spectacular, epic battle between female warriors and nymphs-turned-vampiric Gorgons. The Prince returns to his broken homeland, only to find both his parents’ nations in burning ruins, and the King and Queen as they once were long dead, now having transformed into diabolical tyrants obsessed with power and wealth.
After writing my fantasy story, and creating the pencil drawings that I would later scan into Photoshop and place into the pages of my Indesign book, I was taught how to set up the format of my book, create drop cap effects for my text, manipulate the spacing and tabbing of my text and the lines of the text of my story, how to insert images into the storybook, how to implement character styles, page numbers, and paragraph styles into my project, and much, much more. Near the day of the initial critique of my Illustrated Short Story, I scanned and colored on Photoshop the map of the fantasy continent my story would take place in, and placed it into the Indesign document of my book. Tweaking everything in my document so each chapter would start halfway down a page with exactly 13 lines between the initial drop cap of the first sentence in the chapter to the bottom of the border of the page (above the page number), I worked on every little aspect of my book with a meticulous attention to detail. Every chapter in my story contains a symbolic drawing in the beginning (near the chapter number) drawn directly from the polygonal tools and pencil/pen tools of Indesign that represents something in that very chapter. For example, in Chapter 1 of my story, the lamb with the bloody red tiger stripes on it and the sword behind its tail represents Korapanth the Tiger Prince and his proverbial cowardice and fragility, as well as his innocence and childish desire for peace. The fact it has red tiger stripes and a sword represents how war has tainted and affected the mind, heart and soul of Korapanth, and how slowly, his true inner tiger is emerging from the depths within himself.
When the day of critique came, my professor gave the class an extra week to complete their projects since most students in the class did not possess the time management skills to finish their assignments, or were too busy with other projects to put effort into this one in particular (the one for Language and Letterform). Since I had submitted my project in to my professor already, he had told me to get rid of the page numbers in the title page and last page of the book, and make sure all my paragraphs ended evenly at the bottom of the page with no spaces. He also advised me to enlarge the pictures and map I had drawn and colored so they would bleed to the edge of the page in order to make them “pop out” to the reader more, and to add a fancy frame around the title page for aesthetic effect. I also personally checked the story for any typos and mistakes I might have made, and fixed them accordingly. Below is my final iteration (in pdf form, which is the format I was tasked to save my project in) of “The First Adventure of the White Tiger Prince” (meaning Korapanth’s adventures are FAR from over).