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You are here: Home > Illustrations > The Waterbearer

Book cover illustration: Waterbearer

MER Prize for Best Youth Publication winner 2002

Client: Tafelberg Publishers

This book by award-winning South African / British author Dianne Hofmeyr ended up being a pet project of Konrad's.

Konrad's hates reading fiction... Unless of course it's SCIENCE fiction. The editor forced him to read the book though, and he couldn't close it once he'd started. It's just one of those books that are so rich in visual elements that your imagination goes wild. This "traditional media" illustration was created using a mouse – not paintbrushes or pen tablets.

The story is of an Arab merchant's son who survives an accident at sea, only to be taken prisoner by warriors on the East African coast. The time frame is many centuries ago. The boy's journey inland becomes a journey to manhood.

The book is aimed at teenagers and young adults and published by Cape Town publishers Tafelberg. It went on to win the sought-after South African M.E.R. Prize for the best children's book or youth publication in 2002.

Even the back cover got its share of praise from the editor and author. It's a rendition of a scene where the Arab boy is transported on a small river boat by his captors. What you see is his view* of the reeds while lying on his back. The moon is a recurring theme in his story and represents time in Africa. His vision is distorted from fever after being hit by poison arrows and what you see is that hallucinogenic experience.

Full covers here >

 

Next: Illustrations for Kenridge clinic brochure

 

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* The stars – and here's proof of Konrad's obsessive tendencies – are in the the exact position they would have been a few centuries ago near Zimbabwe. The left hand side is the western side. OK, if any astronomers are reading this, the stars are a bit off their normal positions because of visual distortions in the character's mind, and the moon is greatly enlarged for effect...

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