Look carefully at four or five books from different publishing genres. Choose genres that we haven’t talked about yet (i.e. avoid children’s books). For example, you might look at a cookery book, a biography of a sports personality, a travel guide, a work of historical fiction, a teenage film tie-in like Twilight, this course guide – the choice is yours.
Think about how each book’s form reflects its function. The front cover is an obvious starting point (and the subject of the next project) but try to look more broadly than this. Think about things like:
- Page extent, paper quality, typeface, the weight of the book, imagery.
- Is the book illustrated with photographs, reproduced images or drawings?
- Are these concentrated in one or two places or distributed throughout the book?
- What about front matter and end matter? Historical novels like Hilary Mantel’s Wolf Hall may have family trees and/or a list of characters as part of the front matter. A scholarly biography will usually have many pages of end-notes and references.
Make notes in your learning log about how each book designer has reflected the genre and function of your chosen books in their final design.
Below are photos of the pages and comments from my original logbook (now in Sketchlog 1: Books)
See also Children’s Books