Here’s a series of images I created for a proposed window display at 826 Valencia, the renowned children’s writing center and pirate store in San Francisco:
I started this project because I wanted to try my hand at designing a window – I presumed it was about the same as designing a set, which I wanted to learn about because of my interest in theater. Justin, the store manager, told me it would be best if my proposal was period-appropriate to the pirate theme of the store. I started working with the concept of an overstuffed Victorian drawing room (I don’t remember where I got the idea that Victorian drawing rooms would have tons and tons of pictures on the wall) full of portraits of fish and scientists – I equate this era with the classic age of natural history.
I experimented with the idea of pasting labels on every possible item in the display, after glancing at a diagram in a dictionary and seeing how it looked like a pincushion:
(You can see that in the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd iterations of the picture)
Although the Victorian Overstuffed Parlor theme was vaguely “period,” I wanted to tie my project in more with the theme of the center. The evening before I was going to the shop to present my final proposal, I sat down to sketch, and right away, I had the idea of putting Herman Melville into the design – Herman Melville as a child, scribbling away, obsessed with sea life like another child might be obsessed with cars or sports heroes. As an homage, I also sketched his adult face into one of the picture frames in the last version.
This piece was never executed, but I was so pleased with the innovations I made during the process that I thought I’d post it as a model for doing one kind of a creative project.