A Kids Book About™ Book Design
A Design Case Study
Book design (covers and layouts) is complex. Each book needed to have its own distinct identity and personality, but also fit within the system of the brand. Both the brand and the book cover and internals need to work together harmoniously. Additionally, each cover needs to sit alongside the whole catalogue of books and feel like they all fit without clashing. This challenge was not easy to achieve.
Below is the complete array of the first 12 book covers that I created as Chief Design Officer of A Kids Book About. A book's cover is like a calling card. Each needed to introduce the concept inside or hint in a thematic and playful way to create an expectation for parents, educators, customers, and readers.
Creating the internal book layouts was a fun process. Each of our books were workshopped in half-day sessions. The other founders would work up questions and probe ideas while I would have an open Figma document where I would begin to live build thematic inspiration and layouts.
This would culminate in a book "Ideaboard" that I would then pass off to editorial to carry through the full narrative of the book on each page. This acted as a creative catalyst and then allowed me to oversee the Art and Creative Direction of each of the book titles. This fluid process was unique but allowed us to capture the personality of each author and book during the writing session, where the emotional energy was raw.
Here are some examples:
When we created the A Kids Book About brand we always knew that the book covers themselves would in large part "be the brand". Each cover utilizes the iconic stacked wordmark with different background designs and spine accents to differentiate each title.
As the photographs below illustrate, each book cover has the visual strength to stand on its own. Each other and title have their own story to tell while at the same joining in the larger brand story of A Kids Book About.
Branding is as much about careful planning as it is about unscripted play. This process has underscored for me the need to let the messiness of the creative process loose in order to see where a brand (through its artifacts) ultimately lands and finds a home.