Books, inside and out
Designing book covers that tell you what to expect in a graphically intriguing way is a job I enjoy, whether I’m working with someone else’s images or supplying them and the type myself. Covers for my own books are in other pages on this website. Covers for other people are in the gallery above.
Designing the inside of a book means combining text and image to make page layouts which support the content in the most appropriate and attractive way. This is part logic, part aesthetics and part puzzle solving. I enjoy all three parts.
MENTAL HEALTH FOR CREATIVE FREELANCERS is a practical guide to surviving the varied pressures of working in the cultural sector, drawn by 11 comics artists and published by The Society of Authors. You can download it free at the link.
INDEX by Bridget Penney, a complex multivalent text which invited a baroque, layered design in response. Originally designed for Invisible Books. An alternate version of INDEX has been published by BOOK WORKS, London.
LOOSE WATCH is a selection of poetry, texts and graphics from 39 issues of the Ohio-based Lost and Found Times. It collects over twenty years of international mail-art and writing activity by 170 contributors from North and South America, Europe and the former Soviet Union in one book. A typeface usually associated with phonebooks (ask your parents about them) and a large format pulled all the visually disparate elements together. It’s published by Invisible Books.
The GOLDEN THREAD PROJECT, UK~USA is a 180-page full colour anthology of 30 artists, adapting folk songs from the US musical tradition that have roots in the UK. It was inspired by Cecil Sharp and Maud Karpeles’ collecting experiences in the Appalachian Mountains, and based on research undertaken in the Vaughan Williams Memorial Library. Edited by Geoff Coupland and Aidan Saunders, published by Bugboar press.
THE BOOK OF SARAH is a memoir told through hundreds of diary drawings by Sarah Lightman. It’s structured like an alternative bible to the one she moved away from. The text here is set in a typeface made from Sarah’s handwriting. The Book of Sarah is published by Myriad Editions.
MARIE DUVAL was a Victorian female cartoonist whose work depicting an urban, often working class milieu has been largely forgotten. Simon Grennan, Roger Sabin and Julian Waite explore Duval’s output as a visual journalist covering the Victorian mass leisure industry through tourism, day-tripping, fashion, the theatre, art and the ‘season.’ It is published by Myriad Editions.
MY CAMBODIAN TWIN is part travelogue and part memoir. It was the last book written by Annie Caulfield, a travel writer, dramatist, and broadcaster who wrote regularly for BBC television and for Radio 4.
Published by Martin McNamara.
WATCHING by Winston Rowntree is a story about time travel. Visitors from the future are tourists in our present. One visitor becomes obsessed with finding out more about a situation he has seen. But no matter how much he watches, it’s not enough. He keeps coming back.
Originally a webcomic, winning the Slate Book Review & Center for Cartoon Studies Cartoonist Studio Prize for Best Web Comic 2015, this story had to be reconfigured for print, to meet very different structural and physical demands than the endless scroll of a webpage. You can read about that process here.
Watching is published by Soaring Penguin.
NELSON is a behemoth. A 250-page collaboration between 54 comics creators to create one complete story; a collective graphic novel. It took a lot of editing and some careful design to make it cohere and the results speak for themselves. We won an award and kudos! We deserved them. Published by Blank Slate Books.
ALBY FIGGS, raconteur and boulevardier, wanders around town giving everyone the ‘benefit’ of his vast array of tales of the old times and his philosophical musings about life. Park bench sage or serial fabricator?
This weekly webcomic from writer/artist Warren Pleece was revised and remixed for this print edition, featuring 53 episodes plus a few other special features. Published by Blank Slate Books.
TAKE AWAY! is comic strips, drawings and selections from years of humorist Lizz Lunney’s work featuring her unique mix of funny and existentially anxious animals and self-aware household objects. In a nod to her indie publications, each of the four 32-page sections that made up the book was printed in a different colour. I also put her drawings on the french flaps, and hid more comics underneath those flaps. Published by Blank Slate Books.
As detailed here, Felt Mistress: Creature Couture is a 400-page monograph on the work of Louise Evans. Published by Blank Slate Books.