A talented Photographer Mar Lébou travelled to Carpathians in search for Molfars – ancient Hutsul shamans.
He came back and brought not only remarkable photos of Hutsul people and Carpathian nature, but with a story – The Book of Molfars.
My job was to create a website for the story: structure, visual style, animations, assets etc.
First of all I started to learn about Hutsul people, their culture, beliefs and traditions. This research combined with author's materials and suggestions allowed me to create following rules while making the website.
1. The overall mood should be naive, meditative and a bit mysterious.
2. Design and illustrations should not overwhelm the content: the photos and the story.
3. Slow pace and speed which would allow readers to feel comfy and stay engaged into reading.
4. Animation and visual effects should help the narration like in movies.
I've made a structure, a scenario and a prototype in XD and Readymag to present my ideas to the author. Upon the approval, I've forwarded the prototype to developer and explained all technical details including animations and other effects so he could start working on the website while I am busy with the assets.
Mar Lébou drew some symbols to enrich his drawings and poems and asked me if we could use them. I thought that they look pretty and naive enough to fit the mood so I took them and drew a few more to use them in the other parts of the book.
I instantly refused to use Ustav, Poluustav or any other ancient Cyrillic font which are usually associated with religion and church. The book was about people, not the church. I needed something to blend into the atmosphere that photos, poems and drawings created.
While researching I've read Shadows of Forgotten Ancestors by Mykhailo Kotsiubynsky and watched the movie of the same name by Sergei Parajanov. And the titles in this movie made by Georgiy Yakutovich were excellent example of the graphics that I needed for the headings.
So I've made three sets of letters for Ukrainian, Russian and English. The letter as if they were carved with an axe match perfectly with the idea.
Then made three three sets of lettering phrases in three languages. Had to make letters a bit rougher than original graphics to make them less resembling a lettering for a cartoon.
There are some small details on a website. For example, the menu icon is filled with a text as you scroll. And after the chapter when the narrative says that you should burn the book the icon catches fire too.
photography, text, dreams, poems, drawings
video art, english text editor
english text editor
english text proofreader
front-end and coding