Legendary illustrator & humorist Ronald Searle was honored at the Cartoon Art Museum
with an exhibition of his rare original artworks and a 100-page color catalogue that also included
Searle tribute art from numerous celebrated illustrators all over the world.
Curated by story artist and Searle historian, Matt Jones.
Identity design and catalogue art direction & production by Susan Bradley
Catalogue Logo & Cover
I continue to be awestruck by Searle’s prolific pen work. My lettering in the logo is a salute to his fluid & jaunty penmanship, and the inky shape of an old television felt perfect for this American tribute. To represent ‘America’ for the cover, Searle's Bob Hope piece finally won out, with all of its original paste-up markings included—which inspired choices for the entire work.
Color correction, Layout & Editing
Every piece of art here needed master color & exposure correction, as the scanned art came with varying color profiles and sources. Corrections via color–calibrated DreamColor monitor.
Layout iterations, final assembly—InDesign. Color correction, compositing fixes, type design—Photoshop.
High–Resolution Compositing Fixes on Searle Art
Various pieces needed restoration or fixes if the digital source was compromised. I restored missing edges and fixed reflections, shadows, edging, focus issues and distortions, making sure all composited images were perfectly seamless.
Since most of Searle’s American audience knew him through his published works, I wanted to leave any marks or notes on the art as they were, and include all of them. This choice added a tactile atmosphere and felt like an authentic representation of how his work was originally produced—in print.
Configuring a Mountain of Content
— To maximize sizing of Searle’s art, the first half of the catalogue divides into either his portrait or landscape work. As most of it had never been published, we thought true fans would rather rotate the other section than wish the images were larger.
— The second half of the catalogue was comprised of eighty+ pieces of Searle tribute art from notable illustrators around the world. I asked for any artists that were interested to add a small story of Searle’s impact on their work as an illustrator. Content result: numerous formats, tones, styles and text.