Pratt BFA Communications Design Thesis

Victoria Wirkijowski Illustration

Memory Casings

Digital Product Design
Product Design
Publication Design
Type Design

Growing up as a first generation Polish-American, folk art has been a massive source of admiration and inspiration. I appreciate how through pattern and texture, mood, emotion, and setting can be brought to life with tender, sentimental marks. Therefore, for my senior thesis, I have chosen to combine my style of illustration with the themes of comfort, memories, and sentimentalism commonly found in Slavic and Polish folk art. With this in mind, I titled my thesis “Memory Casings.”

“Memory Casings” is a series of redesigned book sleeves which utilize pattern, texture, and inspiration from Slavic illustrators in order to elicit familiar storytelling nostalgia. More specifically, I wish to execute a series of book jackets while observing slavic folk artists such as: Yuri Vasnetsov, Gennady Pavlishin, Zbigniew Rychlicki, and Janina Porazińska. The way in which these artists portray everyday and fairytale scenarios through stylized marks is gorgeous and highly effective. My work has frequently been referred to as “Stylized realism,” therefore, I am excited to take a deeper illustrative plunge whilst looking at these lithographs, watercolor paintings, and drawings for inspiration.

That being said, my goal is to execute these sleeve designs via digital mediums. Specifically, utilizing Photoshop and a Wacom tablet. By executing a style typically completed via analog mediums with digital software, I am bridging the gap and expanding the resonances between folk art and my stylized realism technique. Using folk art as a stylistic and thematic foundation, I wish to bring forth the emotional textures of memories and nostalgia which exist within the classic books we grow up with.