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Beautiful Books: Forgotten Work
We think you’ll agree that book designer Ingrid Paulson’s work on Jason Guriel’s rock ‘n’ roll cli-fi novel Forgotten Work (Biblioasis) is off the charts: a peek into a time-tripping work of spec fiction, this is a cover that is anything but forgettable. Below, Ingrid tells us about the creative process and inspiration behind her cover and why she loves being a book designer.
A page from Ingrid’s sketchbook
The final coverALU: How did your process designing the limited edition hardcover differ from your process designing the paperback? What were some of the design choices you made?IP: For the final cover, I repurposed the line drawing of a melted LP used on the paperback. It’s very subtle on the paperback, and there it reminds me more of radio waves or shock waves. When time came for the cloth edition, it was a no brainer to place that same graphic on the front, but to fill it in so it looked like a vinyl record again. And then I went nuts using purple endpapers with the LP as lineart, which restored the wave form. I love how this turned out: the red and purple combo feel very rock n’ roll to me.
Limited edition hardcover
EndpapersALU: As a book designer, what makes the work satisfying? What do you love most about it?IP: I love exploring ideas in a visual medium. Love. It. It’s also the hardest thing to do—challenging, especially as cover design is not art, but is there to serve an artistic work (the book). I think it’s most satisfying when I figure out a design that I didn’t know was in me to create, as if born out of the wind. What has usually happened is I’ve synthesized a lot of visual info in our world and used my eye as a conduit, nothing more.It’s also satisfying to work on a straight-up “insert murder weapon” thriller and just play with BIG TYPE, but that doesn’t sound as interesting, does it? 🙂 ALU: Are there any designers or artists you’re loving at the moment?IP: Helen Yentus at Riverhead in the US is my fave at the moment, but there are almost too many talented cover designers. Keeps me on my toes!
* * *Ingrid Paulson is an award-winning book designer and publisher. Starting out as an in-house designer at McClelland & Stewart and then art director at Raincoast Books, she branched out in 2003 with her own studio specializing in fiction, non-fiction, and illustrated art book design for a range of Canadian and American trade and academic publishers as well as art institutions. In 2018 she created Gladstone Press, a micro-press devoted to producing beautiful modern editions of classic novels. She has received awards from both the AIGA 50 Books/50 Covers and the Alcuin Society, and her work has been cited in numerous books and periodicals.
* * *Thanks so much to Ingrid for the scoop behind her process, inspirations, and earlier drafts of the cover for Jason Guriel’s Forgotten Work, available now on All Lit Up.Discover more beautiful books and the designers behind them on the ALU Blog >>