Life inspires art and art inspires life and truth is stranger than fiction. Add to this: art inspires fiction, and fiction inspires art. And let’s raise a glass to art directors whose visions inform the books, themselves.
Jason Booher talks with Slate Book Review about the process of designing book covers in general and the cover of Forensic Songs, dubbed “the most awesome book cover of the summer,” in particular. “Creating a unique package for a book is really about making potential readers see the book as a singular thing in a sea of sameness. Something that has a soul.”
Q: Does putting a series of covers together offer more or less challenges?
A: I think a series of covers is much easier. Turd Theory (one of The Twenty Irrefutable Theories of Cover Design, written by myself and Jon Gray) works on the idea that in a scary world of disorder and chaos people are programmed to seek out repetition and order. So even the worst cover in the world, repeated 20 times in different colours of the rainbow will get you an award or two.
The book cover is in decline, Tim Kreider writes. ”It seems as if sixty-five per cent of all novels’ jackets feature an item of female apparel and/or part of the female anatomy and the name of some foodstuff in the title—the book-cover equivalent of the generic tough-guy-with-gun movie poster with title like ‘2 HARD & 2 FAST.’” We judge books by their covers, too.
The Great Book Cover Project by Levente Szabo
Love these. Belgian artist Levente Szabo redesigns the covers of his favourite books. Done in Photoshop with handwritten lettering.
- The Catcher In The Rye by J.D. Salinger
- The Old Man And The Sea by Ernest Hemingway
- Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov
- Farenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury
- The Metamorphosis by Franz Kafka
- 1984 by George Orwell
- Catch 22 by Joseph Heller
- Moby Dick by Herman Melville
- Blindness by Jose Saramago
- Slaughterhouse-Five by Kurt Vonnegut
Levente Szabó is a graphic designer worked in Brussels, and currently he’s redesigning the covers for some of his favorite books. You can check out the first, second, third, fourth, fifth, sixth, and seventh installments on his Behance profile.