Book Cover Research.

Designing a successful book cover, this is what I got out of the article.

“There’s no place I know of that’s the subject of more anxiety, scrutiny, second-guessing, crowdsourcing, opinion-mongering, and general unease than the small space of your book cover”.

  • Less is generally more, don’t confuse graphics in the small space you have to work with.
  • Choose maybe one symbol from the story, don’t incorporate them all.
  • Use colours that compliment each other and keep it simple.

“One of the quickest ways to kill any good effect of your book cover is to include too many elements”.

  • The best covers are made up from a combination of simple yet powerful elements that can tell the viewer what to expect from the book.
  • Readers look for clues as to what themes and genres the book is from the cover.
  • Look at lots of books.
  • Simple graphics with a clear message work best.

To read the full article visit –



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“One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest”

Penguin book cover competition.

My brief is to design a new book cover for a new generation of readers, avoiding clichés and keeping clear of the film’s promotional graphics.

“There are many themes within the book- political, social, victim, antihero, madness, sanity, affection, violence and many more. Read it and discover what the book means to you”.

To start this project initial instinct tells me to begin looking at what book covers work, what doesn’t work, and if people really do judge a book by its cover. I may need to look into statistics and perhaps conduct a survey about how people go about choosing a book.

I have found some brilliant newspaper articles on the book binding subject. Below is just the first example of what I have found, the review of the review, if you will.

“Cover story: a year of beautiful books” – The Guardian

“This year for the first time more ebooks were sold than hardbacks. Publishers have responded by bringing out exquisite new releases and revamps of classics”.

This article discusses the subject of recently published books that have noticeably had effort put into the design of the book cover. It talks about authors that give thanks to the design artists, names companies that are singly devoted to cover design and points out a few of the best latest releases and reprinted books that have caught their artistic eye.

“Publishers have started building their marketing strategies around form rather than content”.

The main theme of the article is the argument of electronic devices taking over the job of an actual book, the conclusion of the article suggesting that this new wave of printing beautiful cover designs will cause the book to become an object of desire once more.

“..the whole point of a good book design is to grab the attention of both the reader and bookseller, as “you have just a few seconds in which to make the sale”…”.

This collection of classic poerty, which have all been reprinted and rebound in exquisite new cover designs, is a good example in the wave of fresh cover creations. These books, re-published by Faber and Faber, have been illustrated with striking wood and lino cuts made by contemporary artists –

To see the full collection of books and their covers or to buy any of them visit –

To read the full article visit –

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“Trees” Research- Tania Kovats

Tania Kovats is a British artist who mainly explores landscapes working in sculpture media. We were lucky enough to have one of her installations, “Log”, at my University a couple of months ago. Kovats is probably more well-known for the Darwin inspired canopy she created for the Natural History Museum in London called “Tree”. I visited just before Christmas and was greatly impressed with the outcome. The ceiling installation is made up from wafer-thin slices of a real oak tree. The whole of the tree is shown from the middle, roots and all. (See below) This was inspired by a Darwin drawing of a tree and created to celebrate Darwin’s bicentenary. Best viewed lying on the floor!

For more information and to watch an interesting video on the making of “Tree” visit –

1+ 2 “Log”          3, 4 + 5 “Tree”

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Project “Trees” Research

The original 36 views were “36 Views of Mount Fuji”, a collection of woodblock prints made by Katsushika Hokusai. The picture depicts views from different perspectives, distances, seasons and places. The most famous being view 1 – The Great Wave off Kanagawa.

Below shows views 1, 3, + 21.

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Project “Trees”

I am developing a project from an idea I had in the summer holidays. I was in a small independent book shop judging books by their covers when I saw this beautiful binding with an intriguing contents. “36 Views of the Eiffel Tower” lithographs by Henri Rivière. I love the idea of this one item seen in many different ways. I particularly like way it can be viewed with extreme close up then in the misty background from one page to the next.  Below is the cover art and views 2, 4, 5 + 13. Pay particular attention to the view from on the tower looking out, this is a specifically interesting perspective. Rivière’s inspiration for this was from “36 Views of Mount Fuji”. (See above)

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Most loved book in the world?

Bible for my dissertation. Thinking of giving it back to the library like this.

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Dissertation Research: “Nosferatu” 1922

The sans-serif title sequence for the later restored version of “Nosferatu” in 1922 contrasts greatly with the Art-Nouveau influenced poster of the time.

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