9th STREET CHRONICLES
BOOK SLEEVE DESIGN
ABOUT THE PROJECT
"In this first volume, W. E. Self uses street vernacular and previously untold stories to illuminate the 9th Street legacy. The book is written in the first person and the voices are unapologetic and raw. The so-called “Block” is a narrow corridor just one city-block long. It is a mysterious fifth dimension and illustrates that power and money are interdependent; and that Black people are bilingual, bi-polar and bi-cultural. And, from a hustler’s point of view life in the game moves at light speed, never changes and never backs up."
This was perhaps the most challenging project for me, as I struggled on the personal level of conveying the levity of the topics covered in 9th Street Chronicles. This book cover is a composite image of several photos taken by Mr Self. With a very specific vision for the cover, we worked together to combine three very potent images: a real life picture of a murder scene on the "Block", juxtaposed by a flashy old timer automobile, and a real life woman sitting on a sofa made to look as if she is sitting on the car. We felt it was important to give this imagery an authentic location; found in the background are faint streetlights, typical to what could have been found in Junction City. With the car being the only element that is in color, it serves to highlight the juxtaposition of the high-roller lifestyle with the crime witnessed on the streets. From the type-face to the street-sign style title, every element of this cover was carefully crafted to remain authentic to the time and place.
"I remember walking into your room and being met by your incredible art and of course your smile without a hint of prejudgment. Artists get to play God through their creations... continue your search for the Holy Grail and thanks for an exceptional effort."- W. E Self