“The two parts are distinct,” says Naomi. “The theoretical part is printed on white paper, illustrated with photographs chosen among great photographers, using simple typographic codes. The sensitive part is much more experimental, printed on red paper, illustrated with drawings and sketches of my own composition.” Far from letting her reader’s mind wander elsewhere, in this part of the publication, their eye de ella is drawn to text that begins to mischievously wiggle across the page and illustrations which bring each concept to life.
The final, and perhaps most important innovation, is the binding. The red pages which represent the subjective point of view are bound so that they are superimposed upon the pages of theoretical text: “you cannot open the two parts without them overlapping, forcing the reader to alternate between these two realities of collapse.” Not only does the publication serve for a much more interesting educational experience, it also makes its theoretical concepts more accessible to the reader by grounding them with relatable and subjective illustrations.
Naomi has also tried her hand at engaging readers along less theoretical lines. For her diploma project she made her own interpretation of a traditional game book – that wonderful invention for entertaining children on long car journeys with spot the difference, color by numbers, etc. Naomi explains: “Hors Jeu! is inspired by the codes of traditional game books, but offers a graphic interpretation, using plastic expressions (photomontage, illustration, typographic work) and cultural expressions.” She wanted the piece to be an “object of art and fun” and a “creative-active object”, which encourages the viewer to interact with its design. “The user is invited to appropriate it by cutting out, writing and drawing on the pages to play certain games,” she adds.
Going far and beyond the boundaries of her diploma project brief, Naomi decided to self-publish Hors Jeu! before her final presentation. “By publishing this edition, I was confronted with production cost realities that influenced the very form of the project”, says Naomi. But, determined to gain professional experience in the graphic design world, this seemed like a necessary drawback as well as an interesting challenge. Succeeding in distributing her zine in book shops, Naomi recorded what she learned from the process and produced a “mini-guide” to self-publishing which she presented alongside her diploma.
With all this entrepreneurial spirit, combined with a clear commitment to sharing knowledge and her instinct to go beyond the call of duty on a brief, the future looks bright for this young creative. We can’t wait to see what’s next for her.