The Dark Side of the Moon: A Love Letter Celebrating Print Design

A Unique Design by Maria-Luisa Uth

In this uncommissioned project, Maria-Luisa Uth combines her love for print design, storytelling, illustration, graphic design, and materials to create "The Dark Side of the Moon." This love letter tells a traditional Chinese love story in a unique and captivating way, showcasing the strengths and beauty of print design.

The goal of "The Dark Side of the Moon" is to tell a story without the traditional form of a book. The letter itself is folded like a "pocket purse," a Japanese folding technique popular in 18th-century Europe for writing love letters. As the package is opened, the full moon on the front wanes, revealing the dark side of the moon and setting the stage for the unfolding story.

What sets this design apart is the attention to detail and the thoughtful choices made in every aspect. The choice of printing technology, the materials used, the graphic design, and illustrations all contribute to the storytelling experience. The letter unfolds, guiding the reader from chapter to chapter, immersing them in the love story.

The paper used for the letter is a special kind of DuPont paper that can be folded and unfolded multiple times without tearing. It is also translucent, symbolizing the attributes love should possess. The letter has a sun and a moon side, and when held up against the sun, the translucency of the paper allows the two sides to flow together seamlessly. It's a visual representation of the unity and harmony found in love.

Measuring 12 * 12cm when folded and 36 * 36cm when unfolded, "The Dark Side of the Moon" is not only a design project but also a present. Personal messages can be added, making it a truly special and intimate gift. It is a documentation of an old love story using new design, bridging the gap between tradition and modernity.

Maria-Luisa Uth's design studio embarked on this project in August in Hangzhou and completed it in November in the same city. The underlying research for this design was driven by the desire to merge Chinese and German cultures. The tradition of writing love letters is not as popular in China, so the team created a Chinese love letter using a folding method that originated in Japan and became popular in Europe.

The challenges faced during the creation of "The Dark Side of the Moon" were overcome with creativity and perseverance. Finding the right paper that could withstand the folding technique and choosing the perfect layout were crucial elements. Additionally, finding a producer who could execute the folding method proved to be a challenge, but it ultimately became a key component of the design.

"The Dark Side of the Moon" is a testament to the power of print design and its ability to tell stories in a unique and captivating way. It celebrates the beauty of type, illustrations, graphic design, and materials, showcasing the creativity and ingenuity of Maria-Luisa Uth. This design was awarded the Bronze A' Design Award in 2023, recognizing its outstanding contribution to the field of graphics, illustration, and visual communication.

Project Details and Credits

Project Designers: Maria-Luisa Uth
Image Credits: Qianli Ma, Maria-Luisa Uth
Project Team Members: Maria-Luisa Uth
Project Name: The Dark Side of The Moon
Project Client: Maria-Luisa Uth

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