Year in Cover/Poster Design 2012

Book Covers

  • Angelmaker by Nick Harkaway [cover design Jason Booher]
    I think the most striking thing about this cover is the fact that I’m not really sure what is going on. It’s undoubtedly a busy cover, with a number of contrasting elements all working to create something that is puzzling, but still visually striking. I think the use of typography (both placed and integrated into the cover) work to the cover’s benefit, and whatever those geometric/gridded circles are keep me focused on the cover.
  • The Forsaken by Lisa M. Stasse [cover design Hilary Zarycky]
    Admittedly, one of my design weaknesses is profile views of people that feature disintegration or layered images to make up the shape of the face/head.  The altered typography frames the face nicely and adds enough color to accent the design without overpowering it.
  • This Is How You Lose Her by Junot Diaz [cover design - will update when I find]
    To start my explanation, I must say that I am a huge fan of Junot Diaz. The cover for his book The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao caught my attention in the store and when I read the novel, I was just as pleased. I appreciate the visual continuity between the two novels. Simple typography, striking imagery, and enough visual information to reel you in, but not enough to tell you much beyond the title. I don’t think this style could work for many other authors/books, but Diaz’s ultra-colorful prose is strong enough to hold up to this stark and understated approach.

Movie Posters

  • Moonrise Kingdom [d. Wes Anderson]
    Delicate, touching, and colorful - three adjectives that describe this poster/any postre for a Wes Anderson film/any of Wes Anderson’s films. This poster relies on a straight-forward illustration accompanied by a quirky script face that works better in some places than others (a display face might work better for the actual title, but no one asked me.) All in all, I like the illustration style and find the whole thing quite charming.
  • Paranorman [d. Chris Butler, Sam Fell]
    I know this was not the wide-release poster and may very well be a fan-made poster, but it’s both quite striking and very fun. It has a lot of character (literally) and a child-like playfulness that is often lost to feature every other aspect from the movie. Each letter creates a scene that is unique and special in it’s own way.
  • The Sessions [d. Ben Lewin]
    Again, this was not the wide-release poster (I actually think that one is kind of ugly…) but this poster more accurately captures the heart, spirit, and intimate nature of the film itself (side note: one of the best films of the year, see it.) The hand-drawn approach mirrors the hands-on/human touch theme that is felt throughout the entire film. This poster is beautiful and acts as a perfect companion to the film.
  • Wreck It Ralph [d. Rich Moore]
    Simple, smart, and designed a wink (again, here I’m describing both the poster and the film itself.) There isn’t much to say besides the simplicity of the poster aids in how eye-catching and striking the poster is. What could have been an over-wrought computer-generated mess is instead an all-knowing wink to the glorious pixel.

So that’s that. It’s no surprise that I am drawn to the more illustrative/simple designs. These aren’t at all what I thought were the best in terms of quality books or movies of the year, simply from a design standpoint (although both The Sessions and Wreck It Ralph would be in my top films of the year.)


 The Picture of Dorian Gray

“You will always be fond of me. I represent to you all the sins you never had the courage to commit.” 

One of my favorite books. It’s interesting to see the various covers chosen to represent Wilde’s work over the years and around the world. 

If I had to pick a favorite, I’ll go with the peacock feathers.

Source: http://frrroy.tumblr.com/post/26722711940/...