Dinosaur Mardi Gras Trailer

Remember the Picture Book Month trailer?

Once upon a time, Dianne de Las Casas and I decided to team up again to celebrate the release of her vibrant picture book, Dinosaur Mardi Gras. Once upon a time is NOW.

If you like oviraptors, doubloons, parade floats and jazzy tunes, you will LOVE Dinosaur Mardi Gras. The illustrations by Marita Gentry are loose and dreamy and floaty (technical art term of course.) My ultimate goal in creating this trailer? Honoring the story, honoring the pictures. YOU will be in the book, with the dinos, with the floats, with the doubloons, and with the jazzy tunes. Ready?

CHOMP.

ROAR.

Picture Book Month 2011 Trailer

You saw that amazing trailer first thing yesterday morning, right? The one that you woke up early to watch? And then proceeded to watch eight more times in rapid succession, until you could pry your eyes away from the action to tweet about it? The one that gave you chills and made your pulse race and want to re-read each book on your bookshelf?

No, not The Hunger Games trailer….this one!

I had the amazing opportunity to create this trailer for the very first Picture Book Month, and I kinda love it. I’ve been so interested in this movement this year, because duh, I love picture books, so I reached out to Dianne de Las Casas because I knew I could help spread the word.

Why did I make it look like that? Here are a few reasons why:

ELEMENTS OF DESIGN IN MOTION

LINE: Obviously, a dotted line winds throughout the piece. My goal was to use that line to direct your eye from one moment to the next. But also, because this trailer highlights quotes from the Picture Book Month essays, I thought it would make sense to connect them together, almost blending one into the other. Each quoted champion stands alone as an ambassador for picture books, but together they are a mighty, mighty team, linked by a single mission. I debated between a solid line and a dotted one, and ultimately chose the dotted one because there was a bit more quirk to it; it felt more lively. I also liked the way the dots played off of the tiny stars as a similarly weighted graphic element.

TEXTURE: I wanted the background to have a rich, but subtle texture. Inspired by the texture and feeling of the printed page, I chose the look of heavy, pulpy paper.

SHAPE: Joyce Wan‘s sweet logo had a handful of bright and cheery stars, so I used those as a motif to anchor each quotation. By using these as recurring elements, the piece has a sense of unity.

COLOR: Why blue? I took this cue straight from the Picture Book Month website, in order to stay within their brand and already developed style. I feel like the shades of blue create a sense of calm and quietness, and because this is a a piece with a deep message, that color makes so much sense. And it’s pretty. But also, remember the end resolve with the logo and website address? The logo has warm reds, oranges, and browns, so I added text in those same colors. Overall, the piece finishes in a quasi-blue-orange-complementary color scheme. Because of the vibrancy in their contrast, colors that are opposite each other on the color wheel create bold color schemes when you want to signify something’s importance. Like here. Picture Book Month. So important.

TYPOGRAPHY: I used Gotham Thin juxtaposed with Gotham Bold. Gotham is currently enjoying somewhat of a trendiness in graphic design, but I don’t care. I love it. I think it’s beautiful, easy to read, and very pleasantly shaped and formed. AND! I didn’t realize this, but Gotham was inspired by architectural signage in New York City. This is fun to think of as NYC is one of the great homes to childrens’ book publishing. I love the idea that words are (duh) foundational to books, and the typeface to frame these particular words was inspired by something to guide and help people. A stretch? Sure, but I realized it after I picked it and it’s still cool, right?

Off to curl up with a picture book. Or ten.