Book Design - Academic
market is usually pretty conservative, and the titles produced for that market, generally text-based, with not
much imagery. So the solution to producing elegant design is usually derived from my love and
understanding of how different typefaces work with the available page area - pure sequences of mass and space.
Starting with the required structure, I look to have the information flow as smoothly and discretely as
possible from text beginning to end, while retaining the
In this market covers can end up being anything from
wildly cutting-edge to extraordinarily safe - depending on the projected target audience, at the
discretion of the publisher. Sometimes those little posters have to sell the book - at other times the
content sells itself and all you have to do is put a title on it. I frequently have to use supplied images of
dubious quality to create some magic.
Melbourne University Press
Clinical Parasitology uses
variably low-quality images of parasites taken through microscopes, supplied on scratched
transparencies, so I used the images as jewel-like cameos to get around the problem of the image
Continent of Mystery uses an
illustration I did in the style of lithographic posters that were produced to advertise Sydney on the 1930s
- at the publisher's
Action uses a low-grade B+W photo of a protest. I down-played the image, emphasised the author's name
and book title, and gave it all a distressed, home-made poster
More Than a
Game uses a relatively uninteresting B+W photo of an early 1900s footy crowd, which I
reduced to background for this 3-colour cover. I constructed a small graphic, reminiscent of trade-marks
of the period that got stamped onto leather, to carry the lengthy
Encyclopaedia of Australian Science Fiction and Fantasy uses a purely typographic approach as
there were no relevant images supplied. The type is referential to fantasy and science-fiction book
typography, is graphically treated to appear embossed, and sits on a surface that looks like some sort of
A Little History
of Australia is the shortest history of Australia ever written, and a tiny book. It would have been
lost in a bookshop so it got its own counter-pack, which matched the cover art I'd already painted. It looked
great, and turned out to be a
Spectrum Publications is a small Melbourne publisher, producing
an eclectic mix of religious, history, music, and text books, as well as music. They sell into subscription
markets, to independent bookshops, and directly by mail-order. I usually had a supplied image of low quality
to work with when designing their covers.
Clinical and Fieldwork
Placement (Oxford University Press)
This book for professionals and students in
the health field is a typical tertiary-level textbook. It outlines everything from basic concepts and specific
methods of health-care interaction to broader issues such as ethics and professional responsibility. The text
presents examples of multi-disciplinary approaches and numerous case studies. A lot of different components
needed to be distinguished while maintaining the cohesion of each chapter. I only used a couple of highly
legible and easily distinguishable type-faces, using panels, shadows, icons and other devices to
distinguish the many parts.
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Seven Centuries of Poetry in
English (Oxford University
This anthology includes many different forms of poetry,
written over seven hundred years. Line lengths varied greatly and poetry setting has a lot of conventions and
special features, all of which had to be accounted for. To deal with these problems I used the typeface Plantin for
legibility and readability over a wide range of type sizes and in all components of this type family -
Roman, Bold and Italic. It has a two-colour cover.
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Bitter, Black, and
Each author in this anthology had to write a food-related
story and provide a recipe for food or beverage referred to in the text. As soon as I read the title of his
book I had the idea for the cover and the section structure - a typographic approach, based on the
kinds of typefaces you'd find on food and beverage packaging and restaurant menus. It was was nominated for an
APA design award.
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Textiles of Southeast
Asia (Oxford University Press)
This definitive title of over 400 pages is a
history of textile development and use in SE Asia. Each section is devoted to a different cultural
openings are marked by a plate showing a textile detail. A three column grid allows flexibility to
accommodate images of all proportions, body text, and the lengthy technical
captions. The images are a mixture of colour and B+W images and only 50% of the book
was available for colour printing so a lot of pic juggling and jigging of the layout was required to
get the pics placed near the relevant text.
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