Freestylin'

Hip-Hop, Inc., cover This book was a bit challenging because the cover, er, didn’t give me much to go on. None of the typefaces used there was suitable for text, and only one was even versatile enough for use in heads. I also worried (hoped) that the cover comp I received was not final (it was), so I didn’t want to follow its lead too closely and then get left looking like I was the one with questionable taste, as has happened before. I wanted the book to look businesslike but accessible, so I used utilitarian type (Warnock Pro and Akzidenz Grotesk) but added a large image to the chapter openers to make them stand out. The book also contains some diagrams that match the aesthetic of the cover—lots of 3-D effects and shading—so I needed an interior design into which those could blend.
Continue reading “Freestylin'”

Grief floats

A Grief Like No Other cover This book—about how to cope when a loved one dies violently—is not the most uplifting title I’ve worked on, but I’m very happy with how the design came out. It was one of those rare occasions when (a) I liked the type used on the cover, and (b) the editor gave me some direction. In this case, she suggested that some sort of ocean/sailing/nautical theme would be appropriate, as watery metaphors are used throughout the book. Although I might have noticed that on my own1, I almost certainly would not have made such an overt design element of it. Because the editor made the suggestion, however, I felt comfortable using the water motif extensively.

If there’s an art budget for these books, nobody’s ever told me what it is, so I assume that everything has to be not only royalty-free, but free-free. Continue reading “Grief floats”