Emma J. Hardy
Assistant Book Cover Designer at Palgrave Macmillan. All views are my own.
www.emmajhardy.co.uk
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Did a little mockup of the minimalist cover for Madeline. 

Did a little mockup of the minimalist cover for Madeline. 

After a day spent rummaging through the second hand book shops along Charring Cross road, I stumbled upon a shelf full of London Mystery Magazines. Some of the cover designs are just fantastic, so I picked three of my favourites to bring home (although to be honest, it was tempting to come back with the whole lot!).

Turns out this was one of the longest running mystery magazines in the UK, starting in 1949 and finishing in 1982. Definitely going to be keeping my eye out for more of these in the future - my cat Maggie likes them too.

My 5 Favourite Covers From the Man Booker Prize Longlist 2014

So what with the announcement of the Man Booker Prize longlist last month, I thought I’d go through and make an all time top 5, because who doesn’t love a good all time top five?

5. The Lives of Others Neel Mukherjee

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The illustration here is gorgeous, and works perfectly against the large moon behind it. I particularly like that the designer has allowed the text to collide slightly with the lines going across the page.

Publisher: Chatto & Windus

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Designing books is no laughing matter. OK, it is.

In March 2012 Chip Kidd did a really great Ted Talk on book design. If (like me) this one managed to pass you by at the time, you should most definitely go check it out.

Even if you’re a designer whose main interest isn’t book design, Chip Kidd is such an incredible person that it’s really worth a watch anyway. He talks about the responsibility of the designer and his approach to design problems in a way that is easily applicable to other disciplines. Also, he’s really, really funny.

I am all for the iPad, but trust me — smelling it will get you nowhere.’ - Chip Kidd

Foucault and The History of our Present
My favourite cover design from last month’s briefs.
©Palgrave Macmillan

Foucault and The History of our Present

My favourite cover design from last month’s briefs.

©Palgrave Macmillan

Had a lovely surprise when I went to the British Library today (to see the Comics Unmasked exhibition) - Peter Mendelsund’s brand new monograph ‘Cover’ was in the gift shop! Although perhaps I shouldn’t have been quite so surprised - the British Library book shop is the only one I know with 8 whole shelves just for book design. 

I haven’t made my way through the whole thing yet, but I am already in love with this book. Not only does it showcase the best of Mendelsund’s incredible last 11 years of work, but the sections with text are also a great read. He describes how he found himself embarking on his career from classical pianist to one of the most famous book designers of his generation as well as going into some of the more nitty gritty details of what makes a good cover design.

And (al)most importantly I also really like the jacket: a clear plastic wrap with the copy printed onto it, although unfortunately on mine some of the ink seems to have transferred onto the boards underneath. Other than the tiny printing flaw (which who knows, may have been intentional) Cover is quickly making it’s way to being one of my favourite design books - certainly going to be living on my work desk for years to come!

Buy it here

©Palgrave Macmillan
So excited to be able to show my first approved design as a book cover designer for Palgrave Macmillan! Won’t be able to get my physical copy until September, but really pleased to be able to see it up on their website :D 

©Palgrave Macmillan

So excited to be able to show my first approved design as a book cover designer for Palgrave Macmillan! Won’t be able to get my physical copy until September, but really pleased to be able to see it up on their website :D 

Attempted a new illustration style (still needs some work) for another Harry Potter book cover.

Attempted a new illustration style (still needs some work) for another Harry Potter book cover.

Playing around with some Harry Potter book cover designs. 

Playing around with some Harry Potter book cover designs. 

Making the most of the bank holiday weekend by having fun with some alternative cover designs for GOT

Quick little illustration done for the twitter header of a review site me and a friend are running. www.reviews4kids.co.uk

Betty and the Space Alien is soooo close to being ready for publishing! Another cover design mockup. Robyn & I have finally finished our website www.quietlionpublishing.co.uk or you can also follow us on twitter! @QuietLion_ 

Betty and the Space Alien is soooo close to being ready for publishing! Another cover design mockup. Robyn & I have finally finished our website www.quietlionpublishing.co.uk or you can also follow us on twitter! @QuietLion_ 

Another book cover WIP. One day I’ll get round to finishing all these ‘works in progress’ (honest).

Another book cover WIP. One day I’ll get round to finishing all these ‘works in progress’ (honest).

Some illustrations done for work (click to see them at 100%)