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Brielle & Bear - YA Graphic Novel - Early Vis Dev Concepts (2021)


UPDATE: The first volume of Brielle & Bear, "Brielle & Bear: Once Upon a Time..." will be published by Harper Fire, the new YA imprint of HarperCollins Children's Books, on August 29th 2024. A sequel is planned to follow in Spring 2026.


Pre-Orders now Open!

This is the early concept development for my graphic novel. (The story, character profiles, and the plot have since developed significantly.)

All concepts & artwork © Salomey Doku.


Original Concept & Plot (2021)

"Brielle and Bear" is a modern day fairy-tale originally inspired by Beauty and the Beast. It began as a story about fighting for what you love (in more ways than one).

The original story is based in a whimsical version of England and told over an academic year (Oct-July). Set at "Once Upon a Time University", it follows 3 main characters and their struggles with love, jealousy, forgiveness, fear, faith and identity. Although the story and characters have since developed significantly, this original structure remains integral to the story.

Character Design (2021)

Original Storyline (2021)


First year student Brielle Da Rosa returns to Rosebridge 3 years after moving to the small English village of Honeydale-Upon-Foresting with her father.


She runs into an old flame (Pavão Castelo) at OUAT Bookshop, and also meets Atohi 'Bear' Yona, a shy final-year American student abroad on a sport scholarship, whom she befriends and steadily falls in love with over the year.


As time goes on, the love-triangle between the three becomes progressively hazardous as Pavão’s jealousy grows.

(Previous Intro) Sample Pages (2021)

Dyslexie font was used throughout to make the book accessible for dyslexic readers.

Snowy bookshop illustration graphic novel
Brielle and Bear graphic novel page
Brielle and Bear middle grade graphic novel

Concept - Emotive Elements


Throughout the story Bear has an ongoing struggle with his inner fears and worries. Playing on the idea of bears and honey, it felt natural to represent this visually as bees.


When Bear meets Brielle her positivity is infectious and he begins to have more happy moments than low, so I represented these happier moments as butterflies.

Further Visual Development


Key script moments and set design/location building.

Thank You!

Also on Webtoon - follow Brielle, Bear, Pavão and Rosalie in their daily lives after the origin story (short & sweet weekly comics - on hiatus).

Head over and subscribe!

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