Ripple Effect // 2019

Designed by Tori Green
Layout Design

Everyone has a period in their life when they experience significant loss. Mine was when Hurricane Katrina destroyed my home city, New Orleans, in 2005. Ripple Effect is a book that houses writing I produced using months of research, survivor testimonies, and my own personal account of Hurricane Katrina.

I created a book because the intimate quality of the book format suited the nature of the content, and because the repetitiveness of the pages reinforces a visual theme present throughout Ripple Effect, repetition compulsion disorder. Repetition compulsion disorder is prevalent among survivors of hurricanes as a symptom of PTSD, and the use of repetition in my typographic applications is displayed throughout Ripple Effect. Along with repetition, I degrade type in a way that reflects how my city was destroyed, by means of water, and I also use type as illustration to personify people. The book is primarily comprised of justified typography, because the structure is reminiscent of buildings. The primary typeface of Ripple Effect is PT Serif Caption, a slab serif that connects visually and conceptually to slabs of homes left by Katrina’s destruction. Optima, the typeface I use for body copy, had the demeanor of being a serif even though it is a sans-serif, bordering a modern and classic aesthetic.

Finally, the ripple effect the book is named for is physically executed in its structure. Each section is a chapter, and each chapter explains a level of loss that occurred during Hurricane Katrina that could have been avoided but was not. The minor losses inadvertently led to more loss. This domino effect is present both as a sequence, or chain reaction, but also as an accumulation.

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