book design

Once the content of the publication has been deeply analyzed, it is necessary to find the most proper ways to communicate this. The layout must represent both esthetical and commercial values. The main elements that must be considered in order to obtain a successful editorial design are the following:

Typographical Legibility


Typographic Box

Grille or Editorial Reticulation

Material of Support



Another key element in editorial design is the image. For the selection of images, it is necessary to consider:


The use of images is essential since they reinforce, explain and enlarge the content of the book, magazine or newspaper that is being designed through the use of visual language. This is why the selection of images is of high importance. Coherence between the text and this selection is also of high importance. It is a key element to avoid conveying unnecessary extra information which may make readers to get confused. The selection of images is also directly connected with the publication target audience.

Visual elements are highly important since they draw the attention of the readers and serve a useful function as a resting area, making readability easier.


Images can be placed in different locations and different ways of combining the image with the text are possible, creating different centers of attraction. It may be right next to the edge of the sheet, it can have the shape of a text bullet, it may be place in the middle of a sheet, or occupy the whole page, etc. The designer will be in change to decide the image layout considering the meaning that is intended to be conveyed.

Photographs and Illustrations:

Among images we find photographs and illustrations, which can be used in books, magazines and newspapers. There are some differences between these two types of images. Photographs are added to designs to make them look more real, since they represents moments of reality. This can be found in magazines and newspapers, in which photographs break the news in a visual way. In the same way, the images in history books serve a function as document and evidence. They also have an explicative functionality in scientific texts. Apart from this, photographs may have an artistic meaning which emphasizes the publication in which they appear.

Photographs are also used for ads in newspapers and magazines to stress the products that are being advertised and make them louder. The way an advertising sticks to consumersí minds will heavily depend on the conceptual and visual quality of the photographs. It is important to consider that the resolution of photographs in newspaper is different from the resolution of photographs in magazines. This occurs because the paper and printing quality of them are different-the graphic level in newspapers is lower. Apart from this, visual predominance varies between both types of publications. Images presence is much stronger in magazines and, for this reason, it is necessary to attach a lot of importance to photograph selection and, in this way, produce the best effect on readers.

On the other hand, illustrations are used especially for the artistic and creative quality they enjoy. Illustrations main characteristics are originality and expressiveness, and also their power to draw readersí attention. Illustrations have been largely used in literature, for example in children books, in which they perform a central function. In magazines and newspaper, illustrations are an innovative and artistic way to promote products and to make them stand out from the competition. They convey different feelings according to their composition-predominance of curve or straight lines. Straight lines convey strength and definition; horizontal ones, tranquility; and vertical ones, superiority. Curves, on the other hand, evoke movement and flexibility.

Whether they are black and white or colored, photographs and illustrations are powerful tools that can be used to draw the readerís attention. Although designs that comprise many colors can be quiet attractive, it is possible to create high-quality and striking designs in black and white.

Blank Spaces:

Although blank spaces are not considered as an important element in designs, they are actually essential tools that convey feelings of air and clarity. They also work as rest spaces and pauses in the reading, as spaces for reflection and as an element to balance the composition.

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Book Design | Book Design Criteria | Editorial Design Importance | Parts of a Book | Typographic Box | Image | Grille or Editorial Reticulation

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