Inspired by Clarissa Pinkola Estés, Ph.D, “Women who run with the wolves: myths and stories of the wild woman archetype”, Alcateia is a graphic project that interprets seven tales from the book.
The book called “Women who run with the wolves: myths and stories of the wild woman archetype”, written by Clarissa Pinkola Estés, Ph.D, storyteller and psychologist, proposes an exercise in the analysis of multinational tales using the archetype of Woman Wild, nominated as the feminine essence, who was imprisoned and forgotten in our psyches throughout the domestication of women. When preparing the analyses, themes such as creativity, turning of age, pitfalls, and interpersonal relationships are painted in her writing, generating internal reflections and the expansion of the mind.
"Healthy wolves and healthy women have certain psychic characteristics in common: keen awareness, playful spirit and a heightened capacity for devotion."
"Women Who Run with the Wolves: Myths and Stories from the Wild Woman Archetype" Clarissa Pinkola Estés, Ph.D.
Alcateia, the name used to refer to a pack of wolves, is a graphic project that collected 7 short stories that were analyzed, illustrated—in a graphic language similar to tarot cards—and bound manually in a book. The work was done for the Visual Communication Project, a subject of the Design course at PUC-Rio University, and the process as a whole took 5 months to complete.
The development of this project had a series of stages, starting with the reading of the book. The first part of the process was to internalize the stories, re-read them several times along with Estés' analyses. In this phase, the podcast, “Talvez seja isso” (Maybe it’s this), served as a tool that facilitated the reading and interpretation of the book.
The next step was to make a cut and choose the short stories that would be used. The criterion was of personal interest, those that most contemplated me and stirred my perception of the world. Thus, the chosen tales were: La Loba, Bluebeard, The Skeleton Woman, The Ugly Duckling, The Red Shoes, Seal Skin, Soul Skin and Little Girl of the Matches.
The process of creating the collages started with the collection of visual references. Tarot card illustrations and images with mystical characteristics were gathered, showing stars, nature and, of course, women. The initial reference for this project are the works of Alfons Maria Mucha of the Art Nouveau movement.
Moët & Chandon: Champagne White Star’ (right) e ‘Moët & Chandon: Dry Imperial’ (left), 1899.
The collages were made using Adobe, Photoshop and Illustrator softwares. The images used were collected from free image bank websites. The collages are composed of 3 planes: frame in the foreground, the main figures (protagonists) in the background and in the third plane there is the background. The process of creating the collages was not linear, that is, the arts were made simultaneously with the layout of the book, graphic and typographic study.
The typography needed to be sober, clean, and elegant, as it is a theoretical book, regardless of how fantastical it is. The purpose was not to extrapolate into typography, making the design ostentatious.
The main typography of the project was Baskerville, which was used with different weights. In the titles it was used with tracking (spacement) of 200 in thousandths of an eme between uppercase characters, 15pt size for letter titles and 25pt for project title.
In the layout of the book, a clear hierarchy was needed, so the italic weight of Baskerville was applied in the subtitle. The body of the text is in a regular weight from Baskerville printing press in size 11pt.
Since tarot cards have a patterned verse for the entire deck, the storytelling cards also needed a pattern to tie the whole project together. While the images already appeared to be one set, with similar elements in the collages, this needed to be reaffirmed with the verse.
The drawn flowers were designed in a surreal nature, which does not exist on the conscious plane. They are shaped like a woman's vulva, a shape that appears in different shapes in nature.
BACK OF THE CARDS
The book as a whole needed a firmer hold because of the extra weight of the cards, so it was bound with a hard cover made of 2mm parana paper and lined with 100% black cotton fabric starched with husk glue. The guard of the book was made with 180g black Color Plus paper since the back of the cards needed support. The core was printed on Avena Paper (soft pollen) 80g.