Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Notes on Book Cover Design

This Means That

The reader is challenged to think about how they perceive the images shown in the book.

Semiotics- The theory of signs. Signs heavily rely on context.

Signs can change based on convention.

In the equation Apple = Temptation, Apple is the signifier and Temptation is the signified.

Indexical Relationships- When there is a physical or causal relationship between the signifier and the signified, the non-arbitrary relationship is indexical.

"We are 'thinking things'"

The person's perception has a great effect on the interpretation of any symbol, icon, index, or sign.

Synecdoche- The representation of something by the removal or absence of some of its parts.

Q&A on Smithsonian

The book being designed should preferably not be incredibly lame if you have the choice.

The designer can be encouraged to do a good job if the writer is doing the same.

One should avoid literal book designing. Also, one should be careful when dealing with controversial material as it could backfire or have a negative effect.

One doesn't always have to appeal to the majority as long as it is successful.

"The challenge is to subvert the genre" (In relation to the genre affecting the book design).

An idea for a book cover could be taken from anywhere.

John Gall Interview

When independent publishers join with larger corporate entities, it is much more difficult to achieve uniqueness.

Knopf Group put book cover design back on the map with designers like Chip Kidd, Barbara de Wilde, and Archie Ferguson.

Different groups within the publishing company will have different answers to the question: "What makes a good book cover?"

"A really great cover is going to convey the essence of the book in a unique and surprising way that maybe pushes the design envelope a bit."

"The mission is really to allow the book to make a great first impression"

Personas and Scenarios

"If successful information design requires a thorough understanding of a commitment to the audience, creating personas (sometimes also referred to as user profiles) is an easy and fun way to walk a mile in the shoes of your users"

"Personas are like actors"

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