Illustration by Joe Morse from The Folio Society edition of Beloved

At War with Words Illustrator Joe Morse

‘There is no algorithm that could direct an illustrator’s work. The path is not random, but rather informed by the culture and engaged with a personal approach to communicating visually. This is the constant in my work, to use images to express content. My work began during the first Gulf War, when terms like ‘collateral damage’ seemed to make words eat themselves, I thought pictures could do something different.’

Illustration by Joe Morse from The Folio Society edition of Beloved

© Joe Morse2015

‘From my first portrait project for RollingStone, I developed an approach built on the immediacy, energy and emotion that only images can provide. Diverse clients like Universal Pictures, the NBA and Nike commissioned my work for posters, billboards, apparel and more.’

Illustration by Joe Morse from The Folio Society edition of Beloved

© Joe Morse2015

‘My most challenging project is the just published, illustrated edition of Toni Morrison’s Beloved from Folio Society. Nobel prize winning author Morrison’s words are full and ripe with meaning and menace. Here I had to make pictures that spoke to and from the text; images that bring the reader into the characters world rather than illustrating descriptive passages from the book. I wanted the artwork to contribute to the book, words and pictures creating something different together.’

Illustration by Joe Morse from The Folio Society edition of Beloved

© Joe Morse2015

Illustration by Joe Morse from The Folio Society edition of Beloved

© Joe Morse2015

Illustration by Joe Morse from The Folio Society edition of Beloved

© Joe Morse2015

Illustration by Joe Morse from The Folio Society edition of Beloved

© Joe Morse2015

Illustration by Joe Morse from The Folio Society edition of Beloved

© Joe Morse2015