Brain Pickings

Stunning Handcrafted Felt-on-Felt Typographic Homage to Melville’s Moby-Dick


“Almost forgetting for the moment all thoughts of Moby Dick, we now gazed at the most wondrous phenomenon which the secret seas have hitherto revealed to mankind.”

Herman Melville (August 1, 1819–September 28, 1891) was the first writer to have his life’s work published by the Library of America. His 1851 masterpiece Moby-Dick (free download; public library) is considered one of the greatest books of all time and has since spawned countless creative homages, from Matt Kish’s irresistible daily drawings of the novel’s pages, which were among the best art books of 2011, to these lovely typographic prints supporting global literacy. To mark Melville’s birthday, here comes a gorgeous felt-on-felt typographic Moby-Dick cover concept by modern sage, author, artist, and interviewer extraordinaire Debbie Millman:

Debbie has previously illustrated Anaïs Nin on love, Edith Windsor’s historic call with President Obama, and astronaut Sally Ride’s legacy. See more of her work on her site and revisit her exceptional commencement address on courage and the creative life.

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