The Picture of Dorian Gray

15 Jun

This cover is another example of one that has no title or author and that uses instead a quote as the typographic element. It’s a very clean and simple design and I especially like the hyphenation of ‘extraordinary’ which not only avoids an unbalanced look but also emphasises the ‘extra-‘ part of the word. Looking at this cover, I can almost hear someone saying in an old-fashioned English accent ‘extraordinary personal beauty’. I think it’s an excellent use of typography, expressing a huge amount with apparently little (just words and a blue background).

This cover raises all the same questions as the Nineteen Eighty-four one designed by gray318 about how well known a book and author needs to be before you can consider taking the risk of including neither on the cover. I think it works again here as the quote chosen is so recognisable. But even if you didn’t recognise it, you’d probably be intrigued and take a look inside …

Where you’d find the magazine-like layout which I love! In terms of readability, I don’t know how great the layout would be (I can imagine getting a bit annoyed and losing the thread between pulled-out quotes and jumping from columns to no columns) but, my, does it look cool. I think it’s a great example of a classic book being repackaged in a way that makes it something new and different: it’s not just Oscar Wilde’s novel Dorian Gray, it’s the story reinterpreted and articulated by the designer (in this case, John Morgan for Four Corners Books). I think what’s neat about it is the way the internal design is commenting on the content.


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