Monday, 1 September 2014


I wanted to research into the idea I have at hand more before diving into the project. I want to research into the idea of a coffee table book which would relay the changes of the female body across the last century. The way I want to do this is in a manner where the imagery speaks for itself along which bursts of contextual information adding emphasis to the image at hand. 

coffee table book is a hard-covered book whose place is for display on a table intended for use in an area in which one would entertain guests and from which it can act to inspire conversation. Subject matter is predominantly non-fiction and pictorial or a photo-bookPages consist mainly of photographs and illustrations, accompanied by captions and small blocks of text, as opposed to long prose. Since they are aimed at anyone who might pick the book up for a light read, the analysis inside is often more basic and with less jargon than other books on the subject. Because of this, the term "coffee table book" can be used pejoratively to indicate a superficial approach to the subject. 

The above book is a VOGUE Covers coffee table book published by Conde Nast. This is one of the books I have listed for my research for this project. I chose this image in terms of layout and it's simplistic monochromatic style.

A more elaborate book cover design using coloured foils to add depth and texture. The combination of the design, overall aesthetic and type create an unusual and engaging visual.

I love the layout shown above. Simple, monochromatic with not too little or too much type, just the right amount to compliment the imagery at hand. I really like the underlined type also, it adds slight class and edge to the basic yet sophisticated layout design.

I have chosen the image above due to the placement of the body copy and use of negative space. I would like to implement a simple, sophisticated and visually stimulating layout for the practical element.

Similar to imagery noted above, I love the minimal type and large image combinations. The placement of the page numbers and chapters also add extra aesthetic detail and depth to the simplistic layout design.

Even though this layout is much more compact and full-on, the placement of the body copy and imagery is playful and unique, whilst having a modern edge. I also like the placement and large point size of the page numbers allowing easy use of references and reading of the book.

A very simple, basic layout featuring type and a large image. Even though it's basic and spacious, it allows the image to speak and stand out, being a key focus for the eye to settle on and take in.

A heavily gridded structure featuring several photographs and body copy, allowing the eye to move around the page in a certain order, whilst fulfilling the needs of both the reader and the designer.

The above two layouts show a simple yet playful combination of type and image.

I selected the layout above in regards to the simplistic layout featuring just photography and page numbers. I feel due to the project I have in mind and how I want to execute the idea, there will be times presumably in the book whereby layout spreads will simply be imagery. This is a good example of sizing and grid in terms of image placement.

Above shows a simplistic black cover on a hardbound coffee table book with silver foil blocked type. I love the simplicity of the design and the strength of the outcome.

A clever and aesthetically pleasing way to package or post a coffee table book.

Good use of type shown above in terms of layout and it's sporadic yet careful placement, as well as printed down the edge of the book, showing a printed word when closed.

The above two covers show a monochromatic, and simplistic approach to book cover design, causing curiosity and engagement with the reader, as well as hinting at the contents and its topic. I particularly like the canvas style stock on the first image used for the cover, with black screen printed type. 

The above layout shows a monochromatic aesthetic with contrasting colour and type choices. Looks very smart and structured for large amounts of body copy.

Another simplistic book cover design featuring block shapes, printed in monochrome and perfect bound - soft back. Even though coffee table books are usually hardback this look has a very clean aesthetic which wouldn't work as well over raised surfaces and coated stock. I think in this case less is more and it works really well aesthetically.

Bold use of imagery and type to demonstrate the photographs and upcoming content, acting as almost chapters. Visually I think it's striking and visually very stimulating.

I really love this stripped back, basic layout with a small amount of carefully selected body copy. Visually I think it works beautifully and the placement guides the eye around the page.

A gridded layout which is stimulating with different point sizes and image placement. Simple but effective in terms of execution and publishing.

I am in love with this dust jacket covering a hard back bound book. I think the gold and white work beautifully together with clever and dynamic foil blocking allowing an almost mirror like cover. Unusual, eye catching and amazing in execution and quality.

I think the use of image and type shown above is clever in terms of its layering and overlays.

Another very simple book cover, with the blurb down the spine. A very unusual and dynamic idea, perfectly executed with a / solely on the cover. It's one of the most basic yet stunning book covers I think I have come across in a long time.

A magazine style layout with clean, bold type and bordered imagery allowing a clear focus to the reader.

A full yet interesting page with a dynamic layout and grid system filled with various type setting and consistent photographic elements. As much as I like the overall look of the layout, I think it is too full-on and crowded for what I would personally like to achieve with this project.

I love this rough, scrap book style layout using mainly imagery and one line of type. The not yet finished look works beautifully with the images chosen and the art direction taken.

Above show a series of layouts which I feel look quite magazine-esk yet have good strong qualities such as typography and placement.

A simple 2 image, double page spread layout with no body copy allowing the imagery to provoke thought and conversation alone.

A monochromatic cover for the IN VOGUE book published by Conde Nast. I feel the imagery, and type setting work perfectly and co-inside with the theme of the book perfectly also, whilst feeling high-end and luxurious.

I really like the hand-written elements of type which are shown above. I think this could be a really good idea to use with quotes for instance in the practical element.

Sleek and smart packaging for a Vogue magazine which could be adapted to a coffee table book depending on the overall size when printed and bound.