Detailed Replica of Hogwarts Textbook Holds True Magic in Its Pages

When the love of a fandom meets professional-level artistry, you know whatever that fan comes up with is going to be extraordinary.

Jack Tuckwell, the artist who runs Alarm Eighteen, brought fan-made art to a whole new level. His hand-made replicas of Hogwarts textbooks are filled from cover to cover with exquisite texts and drawings. His most recent replica of A History of Magic is one for the books (pun absolutely intended).

The process to make the replica textbooks can be long, but the result is worth every second in our eyes.

This process can take anywhere from three months to two-and-a-half years, depending on the size of the book and how many other projects I am working on simultaneously.

 

 

In total, Tuckwell has created five textbook replicas. The most recent project, the re-creation of A History of Magic, is a sight to behold. Tuckwell says he starts a project by doing research and finding the right content for the book.

I start by researching the series – primarily the books and the films, occasionally bits and pieces from the games and other supporting media – and collect together every piece of information relevant to the book’s topic. I am especially careful to include any specific content known to be found within the books, such as ‘This book is the [P]roperty of [t]he Half-Blood Prince’ in Advanced Potion[-]Making, and ‘Page 394’ of The Essential Defence Against the Dark Arts’ bearing details on [w]erewolves! Once I have collated everything I can find, I then begin to fill in the gaps, which can be fairly substantial.

 

Learn everything you need to know about the history of magic with this replica of the fictional book.

 

He says he fills in the parts of the books we don’t see from the movies or book series with content that stays “true to the feel of the book.” When he’s finished, the entire book is readable front to back with information that any witch, wizard, or Muggle could find useful in their studies.

Tuckwell says, of all his replicas, A History of Magic is a personal favorite.

By far, my most detailed replica to date is ‘A History of Magic’, and it is also my personal favourite. Although the book does not boast the most pages, at 744, it does have the most content – over 200,000 words and 35 full-page illustrations. I poured two-and-a-half years into this book, with the help of my (now) friend Claire (@cm_wizart on Instagram), who I commissioned to produce the stunning illustrations.

 

A detailed picture page from History of Magic.

 

Even with all the time, research, and art creation, Tuckwell says he loves to bring this kind of content to life.

I enjoy creating these replicas immensely, and honestly speaking, I love every part of the process. There is something particularly satisfying about designing the feel of the pages, though – combining fonts and imagery to form magical textbooks that tie into the content. I also love writing stories and poems based upon the smallest of facts, such as the creation of the Wand-Lighting Charm, or the Dungbomb!

Sometimes there are tricky parts to conquer, Tuckwell mentions. But there is no stopping a determined artist, no matter the challenge.

The hardest part of the process is, without a doubt, deciding on what information to include and what to omit – sometimes given details conflict with each other, or else contain enough detail to write a book on the topic by itself! However, I love the challenge, and as I said, I find joy in every part of the process.

 

Study up and learn your history for your exams!

 

In spite of years of hard work, Tuckwell wants to continue his art. He just has to pick which of the many books mentioned throughout the Harry Potter series gets to be brought to fruition. Many of his fans request books like The Life and Lies of Albus Dumbledore, The Monster Book of Monsters, and Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them.

I plan to work on more Harry Potter replicas when time allows, and I would be very surprised if one of these titles wasn’t in the mix for my next.

Jack Tuckwell, under his professional name of Alarm Eighteen, has gained a following of more than 37,000 followers on Instagram. You can see more content of all the texts on Tuckwell’s YouTube channel.

MuggleNet would like to extend a special thank you to Jack Tuckwell for his interview.

Full Transcript with Jack Tuckwell, Monday, April 26, 2021

For continuity and confirmation, what is your name, where are you from, and what is your occupation (as much as you are comfortable providing)?
My name is Jack Tuckwell, but I am better known under the name of my business - Alarm Eighteen. I currently live in a beautiful and magically-inspiring old market town called Malmesbury, in Wiltshire, England. I have worked as a self-employed creative since 2013, with my focus including art, graphic design, illustration, and writing, although for the past few years I have been predominantly focused on the latter two.

Over the past eight years, I have created several full-content books. These range from Harry Potter [t]extbook [r]eplicas including 'Advanced Potion[-]Making’, ’The Tales of Beedle The Bard’, ‘Hogwarts: A History’, 'The Essential Defence Against the Dark Arts’, and most recently, 'A History of Magic’ to a series of books from my very own world, known as the 'Treasury of Magical Enigmas’. I am best known, mainly through Instagram, for my work creating these textbook replicas.

Can you give an overview of the process of creating your books?
In putting together each of my full-content textbook replicas, each of which can be read cover to cover, the creative process is relatively similar. I start by researching the series - primarily the books and the films, occasionally bits and pieces from the games and other supporting media - and collect together every piece of information relevant to the book's topic. I am especially careful to include any specific content known to be found within the books, such as 'This book is the [P]roperty of [t]he Half-Blood Prince’ in Advanced Potion[-]Making, and ‘Page 394’ of The Essential Defence Against the Dark Arts' bearing details on [w]erewolves! Once I have collated everything I can find, I then begin to fill in the gaps, which can be fairly substantial. I do this by expanding upon the known content, embellishing around it, and creating a great deal of my own, all the while doing my best to stay true to the feel of the book. I suppose that, in essence, it’s a form of detailed fan-fiction based on the lore of the world! From this point, I work on producing the illustrations - either myself or with a collaborating artist - as well as the structure of the book, including the page design, fonts, decorations, and occasionally stains, spillages, and hand-written notes. Once the content for the book is complete, I then move into the physical production. Not forgetting to include the wonderful and truly iconic graphic design work of MinaLima for the book covers themselves, I print, foil, mount, bind, and finish the books, bringing them into their physical form.

How long does creating a replica like this usually take from start to finish?
This process can take anywhere from three months to two-and-a-half years, depending on the size of the book and how many other projects I am working on simultaneously. 'Advanced Potion Making', the first replica I made, is also the shortest at 192 pages - this book took me around six months from start to finish. 'The Tales of Beedle The Bard’, at 256 pages, was by far the quickest to put together, as it’s the only book where all the information already existed. ‘Hogwarts: A History’ took me a year to compile its 288 pages, whereas I spent eighteen months creating ’The Essential Defence Against the Dark Arts’, which has a whopping 904 pages of content!

By far, my most detailed replica to date is ‘A History of Magic’, and it is also my personal favourite. Although the book does not boast the most pages, at 744, it does have the most content - over 200,000 words and 35 full-page illustrations. I poured two-and-a-half years into this book, with the help of my (now) friend Claire (@cm_wizart on Instagram), who I commissioned to produce the stunning illustrations. I held a competition on Instagram to find an illustrator to collaborate with me on ‘A History of Magic’ - I challenged my followers to capture and submit artwork illustrating one of my competed sections for the book, this being Sir Cadogan battling the Wyvern of Wye. I received a great many outstanding submissions, but one artist stood out, Claire's work and style being about as close to what I imagined as I could have hoped for. Since then, Claire has gone on to work with me on projects for The Treasury of Magical Enigmas.

Your website shows you have done five replica books. Do you have plans to make any more?
With the recent completion of ‘A History of Magic’, I have made five Harry Potter replicas to date. I am, however, frequently asked if I plan to work on any more, and if so, which ones! By far the most requested is ’The Life and Lies of Albus Dumbledore’, closely followed by ’The Monster Book of Monsters’ and ‘Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them', all of which would be a fantastic challenge. I plan to work on more Harry Potter replicas when time allows, and I would be very surprised if one of these titles wasn’t in the mix for my next.

Can you talk a little bit more about your shop and what you sell?
Sadly, my Harry Potter Textbook Replicas are not officially licensed for sale. For this very reason, I decided to set about creating my very own magical world under the name of the Treasury of Magical Enigmas, or T.o.M.E. The books from this world, including The Goblin Dictionary, Perfecting Potions, The Potioneer’s Pocketbook, and Læraryna - Understanding Runes, are entirely of my own creation (as opposed to my replicas, they do not contain any content from the Harry Potter world), along with collaborating artists who join me for specific projects. As well as the books, notebooks, and other supporting items for sale via www.treasuryofmagicalenigmas.co.uk, I also sell other books, prints, postcards, pins, fonts, and more from my own website. I also hold giveaways via my Instagram!

What's your favorite part about creating the books? What's the hardest part?
I enjoy creating these replicas immensely, and honestly speaking, I love every part of the process. There is something particularly satisfying about designing the feel of the pages, though - combining fonts and imagery to form magical textbooks that tie into the content. I also love writing stories and poems based upon the smallest of facts, such as the creation of the Wand-Lighting Charm, or the Dungbomb! The hardest part of the process is, without a doubt, deciding on what information to include and what to omit - sometimes given details conflict with each other, or else contain enough detail to write a book on the topic by itself! However, I love the challenge, and as I said, I find joy in every part of the process.

Is there anything else you would like to add (about the books, your shop, or anything else you find relevant)?
Outside of the replicas and the Treasury of Magical Enigmas, my future projects include a ‘choose-your-own-adventure’-style magical story book [sic], a book of riddles and trivia, and a ’settle-and-conquer’ boardgame [sic], so I am set for work for the next few years, at least!

 

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