My Zenith Project is a children’s book that is based on the true story of a refugee from West Africa, Ansu. I would be illustrating, writing and creating the book by using InDesign, Illustrator, Photoshop and Corel Painter. I am also interested in creating a triptych painting piece of which each piece represents a different part of his refugee journey: his childhood in Liberia, living in a refugee camp in Sierra Leone and being adopted and living in Los Altos. I would also write a lyrical essay for each panel. Each essay would correspond directly with a panel and help explain the subject’s thoughts and emotions at that time.


This particular project is a passion for me because growing up overseas in Liberia, I’ve heard about the war and met people who have lived through it. Knowing all of that, I think that Ansu’s story is incredible. The fact that he survived the war, didn’t become a child soldier, was able to get to Sierra Leone and then was adopted and ended up in Los Altos is a very unique story and one I’m interested in telling. I feel very connected to his story and it’s something that’s been a part of my life since I was a child so I’m very motivated to do his story justice and to produce some amazing pieces that reflect his story accurately and that I can be proud of.


This Zenith project is a new challenge for me because I am using some of the skills I have learned in the past year and a half but I am using them in a way I never have before. I’ve never made a children’s book, never been much of an illustrator and haven’t done a lot of work with painting. I’m doing a lot of things that I haven’t done before and have been looking for inspiration in past Zenith projects (i.e Hallie Olson’s book) and other art pieces I’ve seen to come up with the proposal for what I want to do with my Zenith. Although I don’t have a ton of experience in all of these areas, I am excited about the prospect of learning more about these mediums and making this project come to life.


Click on the photo below to see the digital version of the book.

Book Cover

For my Production Class (Design), I incorporated what I learned in the Documentary unit with InDesign to create my children’s book. I used Photoshop, Illustrator, ProCreate (an app) and Corel Painter to help create my illustrations and create different textures on the pages to help bring the story to life. I used some of what I learned when painting our aboriginal creatures and the collage painting to create a triptych. Here is the final product.

All three pieces together to create the triptych