Graphic Design Book Cover Typography
Book Cover Research – Graphic Design Book Cover Typography
Slide 2 – Harry Potter Children Book Cover Design
A stylised childlike typeface is used for the Harry Potter title, similar to a Times New Roman font.
The title is written in Red a Primary colour, used to help both identify and emphasise that this book is in the Harry Potter series. I’m not sure if Red on Green works visually.
The P in Potter has a representation of the scar on Harry Potter’s forehead a significant feature of the stories, which the reader will identify with.
The actual title of the book ‘And the Goblet of Fire’ uses similar typeface but all caps, which helps it stand out from the series title. The change in background colour assists with this suggesting the designer may have had second thoughts about Red on Green.
The target audience here is primarily children but the typeface is quite sophisticated, suggesting it could also be attractive to an adult reader.
The Authors name is printed in another and this time indented typeface, which suggests carved in stone, stamped in steel, solidity.
Slide 3 – Harry Potter Adult Book Cover Design
The same book as the previous slide but this time aimed squarely at an adult readership.
The typeface is less stylised more like a broadsheet newspaper e.g. ‘The Times’
A serif font Times New Roman font is used which targets a more sophisticated reader yet this is still a children’s book suggesting that they have identified that a proportion of their readership is Adult and rated C1 to B possible A.
The colours used are Black and White with Gold for the books Title which suggest quality.
Slide 4 – Terry Pratchett, Thud – American
This book cover was produced for the non European market (American).
Typeface similar to Arial (Sans Serif) but with some flourishes but overall seems to infer a target readership which is more used to reading comics, tabloid newspapers rather than broadsheets.
This is especially apparent in the typeface used for THUD all caps and large font.
This typeface also suggests the book is for children, which it is not. Teenagers, Young Adults and Adults tend to read this book.
The overall suggestion here is a less sophisticated readership.
Slide 5 – Terry Pratchett, Thud – European
UK/European version used for the cover of the same book as the previous slide. Although this time with a very obvious bias towards a more sophisticated readership.
The main title is in a stylised form of Times New Roman suggesting a previous era e.g Medieval, oldie worldly
The books title itself ‘THUD’ remains true to a Times New Roman font the choice of the broadsheets which also infers a similar sophisticated audience will read this book.
Slide 6 – Clockwork Orange
The cover of this book sends out completely the wrong message here.
The typeface is a simple form of Arial font (Sans – Serif) combined with the choice of colour leads you to think it’s a children’s book, comic about the circus etc.
Anyone who knows the book or the film directed by Stanley Kubrick, its violent and inappropriate subject matter would exempt a child from reading it.
There is in fact no guide here to who the book is intended for.
Slide 7 – A Journey to Paradise
Overall the choice of title typeface seems to be all wrong, it’s understated similar to Arial or Tahoma and the font size is too small.
The chosen font colour also seems to be wrong this cover seems to need a large title in a primary colour e.g Red
Due to what seems to be the wrong message being sent out by the title the publishers have added a lot of small explanation text below the picture to get the message across.
However if we assume instead that this book was targeting a more sophisticated readership then a understated title and typeface would make sense, think reference book.
Slide 8 – School for Husbands
The typeface suggests the 1950’s to me and France
It also looks similar to the opening titles of Bewitched
The text says school and that combined with the font choices, the height variations and mismatched characters say primary school to me (St Trinians).
As to target readership I’d say across the board but possibly aimed more at the mid 20’s, mid 30’ age group.
Also aimed at the more sophisticated reader
Slide 9 – Red Comet
This is a typical dramatic typeface for comics of the 1950’, 1960’s eras.
It’s in 3D, Red and Blue primary colours, the arch shape suggesting space flight and a comet’s tail.
Think sensationalism a dramatic headline ‘The World Ends Monday’ etc.
The text boxes at the bottom of the cover uses a typeface typical of comics of 1950’s which are still in use today and are firmly associated with this form of media.
Slide 10 – The Secret Lives of Great Artists
This is all about connotation
The typeface and fonts used here are pure Tabloid, sensationalism, this will be an exposé of the lives of Great Artists.
They were chosen for this purpose to lead the reader into thinking the subject of the title would be covered in this way and to make it seem more current than it is, when in fact this is really a historical look at their lives.
The chosen colours match those of newspapers and magazines of today, think Private Eye, The Mirror.
Slide 11 – Inside Linda Lovelace
This is not a great book cover.
The typeface would seem to be more appropriate for a book on computers and was probably used because it was in vogue at the time 1970’s.
I seem to remember this typeface, font design used on science fiction Film and TV programme titles of the 1970’s.
The text at the bottom appears to be positioned to provide a form of censorship but as it is curved it appears to have the opposite effect by following the suggestion of the curve of a breast.
This text also provides an Anchorage ‘Deep Throat’ and the image open mouth.
Graphic Design Book Cover Typography