Life of Pi Book Cover

Posted on Updated on


Research and Design a book cover for the Novel Life of Pi

I spent time reading the book some years back and was surprised when we revisited the book for this GCOM module that I missed the most important part of the story, revealed at the end. I looked at different themes present through out the novel.

I experimented with texture first with blue cloth for the sea and orange felt for the lifeboat.. just playing to see if anything happened in the ideas box.experiments

I choose to look at sea, survival and routines. I chose as paper stock that was a rustic light brown unfinished stock to give a sense of the era(70s). Also I wanted to reference the survival manual that Piscine (the main character) use daily to record his routines and survival.

Movie boat
From the Movie you can see the shapes of the boat the expanse of ocean and how important the boat is to Piscine survival

The lifeboat itself is a have, a home, but also represents the captivity of “Pi’s” situation and hints towards (because of shape and purpose)  the fish that are encountered and offers a sense of survival at sea. When Pi east of the fish he is sacrificing his beliefs system in order to survive.

The type font is Urania and Carton, again implying a sense of the idea of cargo and the utilitarian life in merchant shipping.

Stamps were used to indicate shipping and cargo logs, the compass point towards a sense of journey and the completion of a full circle, therefore of life and mathematical Pi.

Version 3
Playing on the idea of circles The half crescent is half mathematical Pi (Pi has 2 stories) bit is also the boat, the interlink circles are dual aspects of the same (like ying-yang) ans dhows a tether between Piscine and the Tiger.
bacgkround boat info
Technical research of Boat used

And finally my design is shown below

FInal Solution
Final Version






Piscine’s nickname, Pi, has a symbolic relationship with the mathematical pi (π) . The ratio of the circumference (circular) of a circle to its diameter (linear) is pi. The correlation between the linear journey to North America and the cycles of doubt and faith are experienced by Pi. Mathematical relationships are calculated and explained logically and rationally by the irrational number pi. Unbelievable experiences and irrational events are explained logically and rationally by Pi. Neither Pi nor pi can be confined by logic or taken to a coherent ending point. Pi is sixteen when he is shipwrecked, and pi is the sixteenth letter of the Greek alphabet. Pi even uses pi (π) to work out the circumference of the algae island.


Algae Island

The island itself is symbolic as a Garden of Eden. It offers temporary salvation to Pi, but he must leave the island Eden once he discovers the black “forbidden fruit” on the twisted branches of the “Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil.” His illusion of the island is shattered. There is a kind of heaven and hell associated with day and night. By day the meerkats eat without having to kill and show no fear, even of Richard Parker. At night, the island becomes carnivorous and the ecosystem feeds on itself. (See Chapter 92 Notes)


The name of the ship comes from the Kabbalist concept of tsimtsum, where God withdraws himself to make room for the creation of the universe. The sinking of the ship may symbolize God withdrawing from Pi to make room for Pi to develop as an independent creature. Tsimtsum is necessary for creatures that are to become independent so they can freely choose a relationship with God. (See Chapters 35 and 37 Notes)


Orange is the color of survival. The whistles, life jacket, lifebuoy, tarpaulin, and Richard Parker are orange. It is also the color of the second Hindu chakra. (See Chapter 40 Notes)


The animals in Pi’s lifeboat symbolize human traits and may also represent people. hyena – French cook, cowardliness orangutan – Pi’s mother, maternal instincts zebra – Chinese sailor, exoticism tiger – Pi, animal nature meerkats – mirage, meekness

Pi’s Story

The lifeboat ordeal is a metaphor for the human condition. We aspire to higher things (religion, justice, salvation), but we are entrenched in our own basic animal needs. These aspirations and needs are brought together in the lifeboat. If the aspirations are grand, the journey will be perilous.


The motif of the reconciliation of science and religion as equal ways to understand the world stems from the concept of pi – using the irrational to explain the rational. Throughout the book science and religion, two seemingly opposite areas of study, intermingle and complement each other. The two Kumars represent these concepts, and even they come together to marvel at the zebras in the zoo. Next, Pi’s knowledge of science and his faith combine to effect his survival. And the adult Pi ends up with degrees in both zoology and religious studies.


Bibliography: Study guide for life of pi summary by Yann Martel analysis book notes free BookNotes online Download (no date) Available at: http://thebestnotes.com/booknotes/Life_Of_Pi/Life_Of_Pi_Martel47.html (Accessed: 29 October 2015). In-line Citation: (Study guide for life of pi summary by Yann Martel analysis book notes free BookNotes online Download, no date)

Bibliography: Pintillie, D. (2010) The classification of fonts – Speckyboy design magazine. Available at: http://speckyboy.com/2010/11/02/the-classification-of-fonts/ (Accessed: 29 October 2015). In-line Citation: (Pintillie, 2010)

Bibliography:Download Hindi fonts (Devanagari, Hindi, Sanskrit and Marathi font) for free(no date) Available at: http://hindi-fonts.com/ (Accessed: 29 October 2015).In-line Citation:(Download Hindi fonts (Devanagari, Hindi, Sanskrit and Marathi font) for free, no date)

Bibliography:Tiger (2015) Available at: http://www.khandro.net/animal_tiger.htm (Accessed: 29 October 2015).In-line Citation:(Tiger, 2015)

Bibliography: Jayaram (no date) Symbolism of ocean in Hinduism. Available at: http://www.hinduwebsite.com/symbolism/symbols/ocean.asp (Accessed: 29 October 2015). In-line Citation: (Jayaram, no date)