Tuesday, 19 April 2016

Book Wedding: Pub Sign Illustrations



Hey there! So here's a little personal illustration project I had for myself recently, nothing big... just y'know, my wedding!

Oh before we begin, I am totally aware this post may sound like one big proud horn blow but after all the effort we put into this thing, I feel like we're allowed at least a little toot. So bear with me...

I was lucky enough to marry my girl Laura a couple of weeks ago. Now one thing you must understand is that we are big book fiends, so we had a pretty obvious theme to the day.

The invitations were illustrated by us, based on traditional bookplate designs. The rings were tied into a secret compartment, cut into a book which means a lot to us (Neil Gaiman's Stardust). The table plan was a set of belly-banded books with illustrated bookmarks to show who was sat at each table. The table centre pieces were piles and piles of strange old books all stacked at odd angles, some with subjects relating to people sat at the table. The rest were simply about Romany gypsies, palmistry, Indian demons, long lost cults or good old fashioned Satanism. We had twig-covered vases made from coffee jars and wood collected from our local forest, countless twine-wrapped candle jars, potion vials of rum with hand written name labels and slow moving glitter jars catching the light for hours after being shaken (it took me ages and lots of glue and water experiments to get those bloody things right!)

Then there were the table names themselves...

Original pics by Zoe Andreas and Hannah Cumming
Now these were one of the things we knew we wanted before we even got engaged.
It's sad, sick and I want to punch us in the face for being the people who had these things in our heads before we were even on the horizon of getting married but when random chats got random, this was one thing we talked about. Each table was to be named after a fictional pub from our favourite books. Not necessarily a new idea I know, but I was adamant I would illustrate the pub signs and have them etched into wood. At one point I wanted props on the table relating to each pub too, but eventually I was talked into reason and just kept with pub signs. I spent an hour each morning for a few weeks, working on them as my warm up illustrations before work. My good friend Adam had the know-how to get them etched into wood and so here is the end result:

Can you guess which pub belongs to which book? Some are very easy but a few are very obscure.
Answers after the pics.










The Eolian - The Name of The Wind by Patrick Rothfuss
The Three Broomsticks - Harry Potter by J.K.Rowling
The Poison Kitchen - Daughter Of Smoke And Bone by Laini Taylor
The Prancing Pony - The Lord of The Rings (The Fellowship Of the Ring) by J.R.R. Tolkien
The Hallowed Bear - Porcelain Bone China by Ben Read, Christian Wildgoose (Me!) & Andre May
The Seventh Magpie - Stardust by Neil Gaiman
The Leaky Cauldron - Harry Potter by J.K. Rowling

Originally we had six tables but had to add a seventh thus a second Harry. Though we realised way too late we could've done The Admiral Benbow Inn from Treasure Island! There are definitely lots more we missed but these all meant something to us. Also, as you might know, I'm a huge fan of Name Of The Wind and know that 7 is a good number to have.

And yes I know the Prancing Pony illustration is a little cheating but if it it ain't broke...

Anyway, I hope you've enjoyed this little glimpse into the arty parts of our wedding. A tip from a recently married person: If you can make anything for it yourself, do. You'll get a lot out of it and your family and friends will notice the detail and effort you put in!

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