Visual Exploration of the Theme of Copies in Ray Bradbury’s Marionettes, Inc.


  • Jadyn Pierog MacEwan University


This experimental layout project includes the second half of the short story Marionettes, Inc. by Ray Bradbury, about two friends, Smith and Braling, who have issues with their marriages. To escape his manipulative wife and live out his dream of going to Rio, Braling purchases a Marionette, a perfect replica of himself. Eventually, the Marionette develops feelings for his wife and locks Braling in a toolbox to take over his identity. The bird’s eye design for this story is that the left side of the spread reads typically, but the right side reflects the text on the left. The background on the right uses a photocopied paper background, signaling the theme of copies, which is vital in the story. The layout employs a two column grid, except for the repeated word ‘tick’ which is dynamic to foreshadow liveliness on behalf of the Marionette. Another clue is the story’s last line when Braling’s Marionette takes over his identity. The final dialogue is from ‘someone,’ and it is left ambiguous so the reader can infer the switch in identity. To clarify this, the words ‘someone said’ are the only two words reflected the opposite way. The text on the right is a fleshy pink colour to symbolize humanity. The reflected side is black and white to represent the technological nature of the Marionette, except the words ‘someone said,’ which are also in pink. The final conversation utilizes type variations to show the change in dominance and tone throughout the discussion.

Department: Design

Faculty Mentor: Constanza Pacher