This project is a great opportunity to take part in an International competition on designing a book cover. Animal Farm and Noughts and Crosses for the PenguinRandomHouse award. For the brief we need to choose a book of interest between fiction and a non-fiction and design the cover for it. Personally, I quite enjoyed George Orwell’s Animal Farm as it was rather connected to me personally. Romania, as many other countries have been affected and much a victim of the Communists era as well making George Orwell’s book a very interesting read as I was born in the capitalist world, I didn’t truly understand what my grandparents have been through. Even though I was told stories of what happened I never really understood the significance of the era and how people felt back then. So it was also an important read as it helped me to really understand what happened back then.
Animal Farm is a adult fiction or a metaphor written by George Orwell referring and directly criticising the Russian Revolution and Stalin’s Russia. Animalism in referring to Communism where both were meant to fix problems making everyone completely equal where the government owns everything and the people own the government or in George Orwell’s metaphor, animals owned the farm. Orwell chose to relate the events throughout the story to the events that happened in the Russian Revolution, to criticise the Russians, also Napoleon as did Stalin tried to industrialise the place.
The SEVEN COMMANDMENTS as seen in the book.
Whatever goes upon two legs is an enemy.
Whatever goes upon four legs, or has wings, is a friend.
No animal shal wear clothes.
No animal shall sleep in a bed.
No animal shall drink alcohol.
No anjmal shall kill any other animal.
All animals are equal.
Later in the story as the communists or “Napoleon” came to power the 7th amendment has been upgraded to “All animals are equal but some are more equal than others”.
To gain some inspiration I went to Folly Farm which is a small zoo along the coast of Pembrokeshire, home to tropical animals and also some farm animals such as horses, chickens and pigs. I took the chance to take some photographs that I could later use as references and really integrate myself into the theme.
Also in order to draw some inspirations I have looked up some more book cover design ideas from stores and the library as well.
However, to get a good idea of what’s been done in the past I have looked at some previous designs for the Animal Farm book cover.
So I have gathered a number of favourite designs.
Understanding the Russian Revolution Through Design :
The Russian Revolution of 1917 was one of the most explosive political events of the twentieth century. The violent revolution marked the end of the Romanov dynasty and centuries of Russian Imperial rule. During the Russian Revolution, the Bolsheviks, led by leftist revolutionary Vladimir Lenin, seized power and destroyed the tradition of csarist rule. The Bolsheviks would later become the Communist Party of the Soviet Union.
I have gathered up information surrounding the theme of the book including Russian Revolution propaganda ephemera and cover designs and previous cover designs for the Animal Farm book and I started to sketch out my own understanding of the plot and based it around the theme of the Fascist and Communist ideologies.