Book Jacket Project

I had trouble choosing a book to do a cover for because there were a few that I thought would be good to do. My first thought was to do the book ‘We’ by Yevgeny Zamyatin mainly because I was so impressed by the cover on the Vintage Classics edition when I first read it that it immediately sprung to mind when we were given the book jacket project. This cover perfectly encapsulates the authoritarian and highly structured society of the dystopian world in the novel only through the use of typography. The letters W and E have been converted into an abstract shape used to represent the themes of the novel.

A full breakdown of just how well this cover fits the ideas and feel of the novel could be the subject of a whole essay so I will not go into it right now. My copy of the book is at home in Southampton right now so I have copied an image of the cover from the internet: here it is:

weDesigner unkown: I will try and find out who did this and update

However I decided not to design a cover for We because this one already does all the things we were asked to do in the brief. After discounting We I was left with two books to decide between; ‘Blindness’ by José Saramago and ‘number9dream’ by David Mitchell (not the guy from Peep Show). In ‘ blindness’ an unnamed city suffers an epidemic of contagious blindness that covers everyones vision with a  sea of milky whiteness. This spreads to everyone apart from the protagonist who has to guide a small group of companions through a crumbling society. ‘number9dream’ follows 19 year old Eiji Miyake on his quest to find his father in modern day Tokyo. The book deals with themes of escapism as the normal narrative of the story is interrupted regularly by alternate realities, flights of Eijis imagination, diary entries from WWII and excerpts from a childrens novel. The book has cyberpunk elements alongside political crime thriller, surreal passages and deals with isolation and family drama amongst other things.

The themes of the breakdown of civilisation combined with blindness could make for a very interseting typographic piece however I decided to do my book cover design for ‘number9dream’ because it would allow me to experiment with Japanese writing which is something I have not done before and could be very interesting, also the idea of being engulfed in a huge city such as Tokyo could be fun to explore typographically.

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