Pratt BFA Communications Design Thesis

Penny Dasi Illustration

Stories from my time at an All-Girls,
Private, English, Kilt-Wearing School

Character Design

For my senior illustration thesis, I illustrated a short book of multiple stories about my time in a private girls school in the South East of England.

When I moved to Long Island, NY in 2013 before my freshman year of high school, I was not surprised to find out that most people I talked to were interested in how I spent my time at school in England. This has continued throughout my life in the US and even my friends from college like to hear my stories from elementary and middle school. This is why I want to create and illustrate a book telling these stories.

I didn’t want to make a full comic with one narrative, rather just a few illustrations per anecdote, sort of like an illustration or comic strips from the New Yorker magazines. I made some pages less rendered than others, as I liked some variety in my illustrations. I included references in my drawings for a comedic effect; for a story about how the year 7s would buy potato chips for the year 6s because they weren’t allowed, I would illustrate it to look like it came out of a crime movie from the ’50s.

Comedy is a very big part of my idea with this book, and used it in my illustrations. Although on paper these stories don’t sound incredibly funny, I emphasized and exaggerated the way the characters express themselves. Although some of the stories are crazy by themselves, like the time I threw up on my teachers white jacket. I enlisted the help of my sister and parents to recount our memories and experiences of this school, as they have some different stories of their own.