Design Process for a Book

Cecilia Sorochin of SoroDesign is a graduate of the Universidad de Palermo and now teaches editorial design at the Universidad de Buenos Aires. she’s comfortable in both print and web design, her specialties include book design, magazine layout, and print production. Before turning to graphic design, she studied fashion design at the Universidad de Buenos Aires and worked in the fashion industry for many years.

The Design Process for a Book and more…

I find the design process really interesting, maybe more than the finished work.
Why? (just my point of view) Because during that collaborative process between designer & (ideally) author is where the visual personality of the book will be defined.

The Book Cover

We get the manuscript for the design of the book cover, layout & website for A Worthy Legacy by author Tomi Akinyanmi.

A Worthy Legacy is a story about life and the passing of wisdom from one generation to the next. The author combines the last wise words of her beloved grandfather together, along with a few of her own thoughts to create a compelling story about real life.

Read the manuscript

From just a glance, the overall feel of the book should come out.

Then look for the voice: my starting point for every book is the belief that authors write books because they have something to say.

By reading a manuscript, I need to find what it is that they had to say, who says it, how it is said, & from which point of view.

Sooner or later (usually very soon) some details are revealed, and often I find in those little details the key to the cover.

Reading A Worthy Legacy I learned that the author, originally from Nigeria now living in the U.S., tells many insights about the Yoruba Tribe, which totally fascinated me…  and gave the book the ‘unique’ factor.
So from the reading, I jump to images: and started my search for the graphic elements – images, textures, color palette, etc – that relate to the book:

Bookcover process 1

From there I get the first round of covers to send to the author, and since the first cover was my favorite, I’ve done also an option in a lighter color. Maybe I was trying to persuade? 🙂

bookcover trial covers

Bookcover process 2 – the ‘universal’ approach

The first round of the cover concepts were focused on the uniqueness of the yoruba origins of the author and her grandfather, the focus of the legacy.

Book cover proposals - final selection

Book cover proposals - final selection

 

 

For the second round we looked for a more ‘universal’ approach on the topic of the book’s theme “learnings of life”, which would allow more people to relate to it. This was a better approach from a marketing perspective and also conveyed the message that the author was transmitting in a better way since the book is about people and life regardless which culture they are from:

The dark background immediately stood out from the rest. And though we loved the title set in the calligraphic font Affair, we later changed it to Bentley & MrsEaves for improved readability:

title

The final cover design

Here is the final cover:

bookcover-4-194x300

When we finished the cover, we sent it over to the talented team of COS Productions to produce the book trailer. I was thrilled to see how the video captured the essence of the book:

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About ranman

Design educator with a Masters of Design degree. 32 years of design experience. View all posts by ranman

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