E PLURIBUS UNUM: GRAICE Book Cover Design + Inside illustration
Year: 2021 Month: July
Book cover design, content
Role:  Creative Direction
Team Members: Circe Woessner, Author
Tools:  Adobe Photoshop CC, Wacom Cintiq
Size: Softcover book, 
“You never know who you will design for” is always a thought I keep in the back of my mind. It is something that I am always happy and eager to discover; a certain professional thrill to a creative “mission” and the opportunity to be of service to my fellow human being. It is even more exciting when the stars align and a “full circle” moment happens…and that is what exactly has happened in this case.

In Early 2021 I received a message from Circe Woessner, my 8th Grade English teacher during my Middle School year in 1998 while my Navy centered family was stationed in Roosevelt Roads at Ceiba, Puerto Rico. She was interested in commissioning design work for her newest publication endeavor titled “E PLURIBUS UNUM: G.R.A.I.C.E (gender, religion, race, identity, culture, & ethnicity) Under Pressure.

After several creative conversations about the creative task we agreed upon a solution and so began my journey into one of the most interesting creative endeavors 8th Day Create has done. Never would I have thought that I would be collaborating with my 8th grade English teacher on a project that explores the Military life and upbringing. 

Circe’s vision of the book was to be compendium of recollections and memories about the Military life experience, spanning from members who were active duty as well as military “BRATS” (a term lovingly embraced by children of an Active Service Duty Member, with the outline of exploring those memories through the following principles called “G.R.A.I.C.E” (gender, religion, race, identity, culture, & ethnicity). This gave those that participated a strong framework for content curation.
I was tasked with the grand creative opportunity to create 18 art pieces; 1 cover design and 17 chapter pieces. It was an absolute creative challenge to myself to come up with the artwork. A few creative questions I faced were 1) How can I create pieces that honours the traditional foundations of military culture while still being creatively engaging? 2) How can I bring general concepts such as “religion” and “identity” to visual life. 

I first approached the design to the cover art. Designing cover art for publications has been one of my favourite types of work to do! My overall style has always been of 100+ year old vintage ephemera that are in the public domain. I am a huge proponent of that timeless artwork and remixing it for the present. What draws me to this particular style is the richness of expression over the years and the unique mixture I can achieve combining them.

Here are my original notes about the design:
“For the cover design I wanted to create a cover that reflected an overall vibe of the military/family experience ranging from the good, the bad, and the ugly. I also wanted to showcase various ethnicities in different service uniforms. Inspired by an overall vintage yet timeless feel, I wanted to bring to life the title in a collage like yet eclectic way.”
Back to Top