Ian F. Hunt

Cinematographer and Filmmaker

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Graphic Design – Type & Language – Production of Media Artefact: Book Cover

Graphics Design

Subject: Graphic Design
Unit: Type and Language
Tutor: Philip Shakeshaft

Assignment: Production of Media Artefact – Book Cover Design, DVD Cover or CD Cover

Final Design of my Book cover

Typography - Book Cover Design

Typography - Book Cover Design

An examination of the Typefaces used in this book cover.

The title typeface ‘Steam’ is a  purpose designed font for the Books’ cover and was designed to represent the steam and smoke coming from the chimney of the Steam Engine pictured on the front cover.

The font was originally based on the Serif (slab serif font?) font Rockwell Extra Bold which was then modified and now appears more Sans Serif rather than Serif with all the cloud type flourishes.

In denotation terms the title literally says steam which of course is expected to come from a steam engine and this is the main title of the book about steam, steam engines and in general the world of steam and the people in this world of steam.

In connotation terms the typeface also suggests that this could be a fun book, maybe a humorous look at the age of steam. The reader could expect to see stories from characters from the world of steam recounting their funniest memories of Steam and individuals in the world of steam. The cartoon shape of the characters could also indicate that this theme will be repeated inside the book and most probably complemented with drawings and pictures in a cartoon like style.

The colour of the text is white against a blue background that is light clouds against a blue sky which infers a sunny day again in connotation terms a happy fun book, also possibly indicating a light and enjoyable read.

The sub title text ‘The New Best Seller By Ian Hunt’ uses the Sans Serif font Times New Roman, all in caps but with the first letter of each word larger than the rest to emphasise each word.

In detonation terms it says that the book is both new and it’s also a best seller by the author Ian Hunt.

In connotation terms the use of Time New Roman the preserve of the broadsheets indicates that this book is a quality product targeting the more serious and educated reader.

From the back cover the title ‘100 years of Steam’.

In denotation terms it means that the book covers literally 100 years of steam.

Looking at the connation of this text firstly it’s a San Serif font which is in embossed gold and appears raised from the books cover this could indicate a degree of authority, suggesting this book has been written by an expert in their field. This could also be seen as a testament to the quality of the book. The colour gold also gives that feel that this is a quality product.

A mixture of typefaces is used for the recommendations for  the book; the quotes themselves use a serif type font (Academy Engraved LET) with the names of the newspapers from where the quotes came from using another san serif font but this time a bold Times New Roman font.

In denotation terms they are the names of the newspapers with the quotes taken directly from them.

In connotation terms though the bold font used for the names of the newspapers indicates the gravity of the paper and gives it an authoritative feel, an expert’s opinion of the content of this book. Again because of the source of these quotes this could also be seen to indicate the type and demographic of the readership, that is middle class C2 to B possibly. Age wise it most probably also indicates that the older reader would be more interested in this book and has in fact has been targeted by the publishers.

The introduction to the book uses the Sans Serif font Times New Roman. The first word STEAM is capitalised to emphasize the books overall subject and to indicate it is in fact looking at the general term Steam rather than just a specific part of the Steam World e.g. just Steam Engines or just Traction Engines.

In denotation terms the introduction says that it is a History of Steam Engines and Traction Engines over 100 years between the years 1890 to 1990.

Looking at the connotation again the use of the Time New Roman font as used by authoritative publications including the broadsheets ‘The Times’ and the ‘Observer’ indicates that this book should be viewed in the same terms an authoritative look at the history of Steam by an expert in their field.

The colour black is used, a neutral colour, but it is also associated with serious and authoritative publications.

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