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Thursday, October 08, 2009

A Better Pencil

Designer credit to come

Am I alone in digging the simplicity of this?

12 comments:

Alex said...

No.

denparser said...

Interesting topic. A reaction that may readers might go farther discussion about the topic.

karen said...

i believe Keith Hayes designed this under the Art Direction of Lisa Force at Oxford University Press. my memory is that the design is based on a real screenshot of the type design on the computer screen. i've been a fan of the simplicity of this cover too.

Sam Sullivan said...

You certainly aren't alone in that Joseph. Overall, I adore the concept. Possibly because it reminds me of a technique I used in my own portfolio.

The square to the right of the cursor jumps out at me as being unnecessary. I can't think of a platform or app that has a square next to the cursor like that. Even if there is, it doesn't seem to lend anything to the design.

If it was, as I suspect, manually added, I'm curious as to why. Perhaps the designer meant the cursor to be a statement itself, with the square being the punctuation?

Also, the short depth of field bugs me a bit. The blurred text seems to want to play a role in the design, but it's purpose is unclear.

Book Oblate said...

The simplicity of the concept is fine, but execution feels a little ugly to me. The leading especially in the title is awkward and the off-focus seems to counter the "better pencil" message. Perhaps seeing the book entirely, with spine and depth, would give the proper impact. In 2D on-screen, it just looks like a screenshot.

Thinking of that, it occurs to me that designers also have to consider how their covers are going to appear online since so many book sales occur from screen images too.

Thanks for the BDR

Shorty said...

Oy vey, so much to consider.

Anonymous said...

That period after the arrow is part of the cursor in Indesign.

Airelle Depreux said...

This reminds me of a poster I saw at the Southbank Centre here in london. It's by Ignatz Johnson, here's link to that poster on his website (it's the second one down):

http://ignatzjohnson.com/print_project.html

Anonymous said...

Have to see this in person. Really awesome with its #2 pencil colored spine. A picture of book with happy author...

http://illinois.edu/db/view/25/7056?count=1&ACTION=DIALOG

Shorty said...

I just went on that illinois.edu website mentioned above-- the cover does look terrific in 3-d. Much better than just the front (and the front is great).

Sam Sullivan said...

@Anonymous - Curious. I don't have a dot/period by the side of my cursor in InDesign (CS + CS3 on both Mac and Windows).

Ben said...

Like a few souls above, I like the concept but am iffy about the execution. It might even have to be one of those covers I see in print before I can really decide (which of course is silly given the book's subject). On screen, it kinda makes me dizzy.

And yeah, the square: why include that?