Craig Arnold Illustration
The Booby Booklet
This project came about in my second year during the social awareness unit on my illustration course at university. I chose to look at feminism and joined feminism society to inform my project.
I initially offered to help with the Booby booklet project as illustrator and creative person, having meetings with the head of the project to discuss where it heading.
My work got as far as drawings and then that was it. The project never got off the ground after that. But in my 3rd year it did and I completed the illustrations and the logo and everything I had initially been commissioned to do.
Then as the booklet was coming together, I was asked to produce an additional illustration of 3 women sitting on a bench, all of different ethnicities, with different sized boobs, body types and hair styles.
This commission however took an interesting turn when not only did she then ask for them to be topless, but also for drastic change with their boobs and hair styles. I was very apprehensive about these changes because they brought about a lot of controversy around subject of women being topless in public. I didn’t understand at first why this drastic change was taking place, almost trying to convince the project creator to not go in this direction, but I soon understood why and saw how it made perfect sense, the book was about body positivity as well as breast cancer awareness, the topless in public controversy was just another part of that.
But the controversy didn’t end there, when it came to getting the booklets printed, the printers refused to print them. They had deemed the imagery too offensive to the general public, even though there was nothing wrong with the images; they weren’t sexual in any way. The breast however it seemed in any form is a sexual object and therefore deemed offensive. But fortunately the printers saw sense and printed them. Then within the first and only day they were sold out, all money that had been raised going to breast cancer research.
The project was such a success that it opened up the possibilities for more body positivity booklets to be produced for both other genders and body parts. My illustrations were well received and it opened up the possibilities for me to be involved in more projects in the future.