The Challenge: For an academic publisher, design book covers that are restrained yet reference the subject matter.
The Solution: For each book jacket, we researched cultural elements we could reference in the design, creating covers which were unique but fit with Brill’s simple aesthetic.
The challenge in designing book covers for Brill, a 400+-year-old academic publisher, is researching visual references for otherwise dry journal titles. For the Journal of the Chinese Overseas, we evoked Chinese calligraphy in creating a brushstroke “O.” For example, for Studia Judaeoslavica, we found a photograph of beautiful wrought ironwork, which became the inspiration for the dark blue design element. For the Journal of Egyptian History, we divided the cover into into red and white sections, representing the upper and lower kingdoms of Egypt, with the blue Nile streaming down the side.
Brill provided us with images for their Encyclopedia, which we used in a montage, and the beautiful abstract painting used in the background of Global Chinese Literature.