Whilst working at my new job, I’d gotten an email from a Rotherham fellow called Michael Sumption who wanted a cover illustration doing. He was creating a book about his running days – himself and some fellow runners taking part in a race known as JOGLERS – The John O’Groats to Lands End Relay(s). The course spans the entire UK, from the top – John O’Groats in Scotland, to Lands End on the southern west tip of England, which is 874 Miles (according to the signs) however Google Maps / Directions seems to disagree slightly. But it all depends on the route. And when you’re running 8½ hundred miles, whats another 25 miles? One of the charming things about Michael’s troupe, is they were generally all different ages – but quite a few were doing it into their 60’s, and some were even older!
Making the Cover:
I was asked to create a front cover to help add a sense of place and distance for the book itself. With Michael knowing what he wanted – the layout wasn’t too difficult. I’d managed to only need to change very few elements for it to become the final design, though plenty had to be done. Especially getting landmarks in the right place and the route being accurate. I created the entirety of the map, then planned out the locations with researching each and every place on google maps and images to try and understand a little about them. It could have easily gotten over-complicated so I stuck to landmarks and characterization, plucking a specific element from the place, and what Michael felt necessary from his passing visits and memories. I’d go on to illustrated each part separately and then brought it onto the final map and resized it as necessary.
There also needed to be a character that was running through the course with a relay baton, the only requirement being that he wore a fluorescent yellow vest with the JOGLERS text.
The finished illustration can be seen below. Many thanks!
For more information on the John O’Groats to Lands End relay, through walking, running, cycling etc (if you’re crazy enough to do it) visit the wikipedia page here.