18 November 2014


The book Christopher Morcom gives to the young Alan Turing.

The crossword booklet young Alan is doing.

Alan Turing set a crossword challenge to attract new recruits to work with him at Bletchley Park. I couldn’t quite believe it, but with the help of a very helpful newspaper archive, I managed to track down a copy of the newspaper with the actual crossword Turing wrote, half filled in by someone back in 1942. I created the advertisement at the top to help tell the story in the film.

Photo: Black Bear Pictures via The Guardian.
'Specials' in the cafe.

Enigma documents on the German submarine.

Notebook making.

'Intercepts' and 'decrypts'.
We tried to be as accurate as possible regarding the extremely complicated paperwork chain that was gone through by those working at Bletchley Park. Luckily I had the invaluable help of historian Joel Greenberg, author of a book on codebreaker Gordon Welchman who worked alongside Turing, who helped me learn about the processes they went through. These are recreations I made of original documents supplied by Bletchley Park (although the intercepted messages I wrote are all fictitious!).

Sketches and plans - Alan's desk at Bletchley Park.

Sketches and plans - Alan's house.

Star globe.

I drew lots of notes and sketches in Alan Turing’s ‘hand’ for the film. We were able to look at a lot of his original documents created after his time at Bletchley, which were both fascinating and mind-boggling. He was interested in so many areas from mathematics to morphogenesis to astronomy and lots more in between. The globe I made from a story in Andrew Hodges biography on Turing where he describes how as an adolescent, Turing trained himself to wake up at the same time each night, so he could map the position of the stars from his bedroom window.

Train tickets and luggage stickers.
Cigarette boxes.

Puzzle booklet read by the boy on the train.

Advertisements for the train station.

War-time posters.
The Imitation Game tells the story of Alan Turing, who worked at Bletchley Park during the Second World War to break the German Enigma Code. These are some of the graphic props I designed for the film while working for Minalima. I’m proud to have worked on this film, not only because creating the graphics was very rewarding, but also because it’s a very important story to tell about Turing’s professional and personal life. See it on the big screen - out in cinemas now!

Images copyright Black Bear Pictures.

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