Postertext: 30,000 Words Are Worth a Picture

Geek Culture

Close up of Moby Dick poster. Image:, used with permission.Close up of Moby Dick poster. Image:, used with permission.

Close up of Moby Dick poster. Image: Postertext, used with permission.

They say a picture is worth a thousand words, but these cool book posters from Postertext show that that goes both ways. The posters contain the text of a classic book, arranged to form a silhouetted image. Above is a detail from the Moby Dick poster — click on the image to see a larger version. So far they’re focusing on classic literature, but they’re hoping to add more each week. If you have a favorite book you’d like to see moved up the queue, send them an email and they’ll put it into consideration.

20000 Leagues Under the Sea20000 Leagues Under the SeaMy personal favorite (so far) is Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea, which has a fantastic image of the giant squid reaching for the Nautilus. I’m a bit disappointed in the poster for Flatland, one of my favorite books in the collection. It has a big pentagon in the center, but everyone knows that the main character is A. Square, right? That by itself would make a boring poster, but surely they could have put in a few different shapes?

For those of you more inclined to read code than prose, there’s also a poster for the Linux Kernel (version with Tux in color in the center. This one, however, is a little more like colored ASCII art—the text is simply colored differently to show Tux, rather than formatted with spacing.

According to the FAQ, the text is large enough to be legible for someone of normal eyesight. Of course, that means that some books won’t fit on a single poster: Flatland contains the entire text, but Moby Dick only uses the first eight chapters. I guess you’ll need to get the wallpaper version if you want to finish the story.

The posters do seem a little pricey (though that US-Canadian exchange rate might help a smidge) but what better way to decorate your library than with some text-based art?

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