Graphic designer Lauren Barrett has recently completed her MA in graphic design at Central Saint Martins, having previously studied at the Glasgow School of Art.
Lauren's main area of interest is book and editorial design, and this project clearly demonstrates her attention to detail, resulting in a gorgeous tome that captures every nuance of stagecraft.
Working over the course of a month with cast and crew, she documented each element of a production of Oscar Wilde's Dorian Gray at the Leicester Square Theatre using film, photography and sound recording. Using all of the information gathered, each aspect of the play from music and lighting to movement and dialogue was mapped in a 320 page book to demonstrate how off-stage elements and on-stage action work together to create a theatrical production.
Each page of the book forms a 30 second snapshot of the play and each of the various elements has its own set of notational devices and symbols. One of the main features of the book is concerned with the notation of stage lighting; the foredge of the book shows the sequence of lighting changes that take place during the play, thus providing a visual overview of the lighting script and an alternative means of navigation through the book. Each colour on the foredge was obtained by taking individual stills from the film footage and measuring the intensity of light on the stage backdrop at a given moment in time creating shifts in colour due to the many different lighting combinations that are used throughout the play.
On the interior spreads of the book, lighting symbols run along the top edge of the page indicating which lights are switched on, to what intensity and what area of the stage they illuminate. A similar method is applied to both the music and dialogue, both organised along a timeline, and the movement of the actors across the stage via colour coded crosses placed in specific areas of the stage, all of which is summarised on a book mark.
Additionally, the original score for the play is presented as an appendix at the end of the book. In terms of photography, cast shots were taken using a medium format camera and in a manner that harked back to the period in which Dorian Gray was originally written by Oscar Wilde.