There is something magical about being read to, with all the advancements in technology nothing will beat the words on a page being brought to life when expressed by a human voice.

This is my interpretation of the ISTD Brief "The Waitress" a modern fairy tale by Jack Zipes for which I was awarded a Merit. The brief stated that as we no longer have the limitations of printing mechanics how could you re-invest the book with the same experimentation we see in magazines today. I looked at how standards of literacy limited the once exclusively oral fairy tale.

In a culture that is more ‘connected’ than ever through technology, our physical interaction and story telling to each other is in decline. Advancements like the audio book only pull us further from actually reading and hearing each others voices, as if we are all listening to examples of how to read without actually participating.

My concept deals directly with this by creating a piece that sits somewhere between a book and a play. Creating a physically interactive read-through for multiple readers to engage with the story at once, and read aloud once again.

The story is set in Paris, much of the visual language is drawn from 1920's Parisian newspapers and signs. As the book is read by three people the system is based on reading direction following your characters font and reading along to others in your head means that timings can be controlled and turns synchronized to create scenes across all spreads. The fourth viewing angle is not occupied, here the spoken environment is illustrated through various typographic treatments all in french this reacts to the spoken scenes.

There is a video of a read through that a few of us did. Thanks Guy Field, Emilie Loiseleur and Cosmo Jameson and thanks to Sally Finnigan for the use of Berkley Hill residence and Nick Satchell for the camera.
The Waitress, ISTD


Contact: jack (at)