When I think of International Book Fair in GuadalajaraThe first thing that comes to mind are books, books and more books. Unlike a library, here they are all formed and ready to be wholesale. Once it opens its doors, people swirl to browse, entertain themselves, talk to the booksellers and, if they are lucky, meet their favorite author head-on, who will surely be in the mood to sign a copy.
You may be interested: DesignLifer. Typographic culture 1.
it happens on the sales floor, in the last room for workshops,
presentations and forums, the International Design Forum is held
Editorial, in which different topics are discussed in relation to one of the
unions that FIL has forgotten, even in recognition of one of the
industries that contribute directly as a gear in the production of
books: the designer’s. If you look at the badges there are authors, publishers,
rights officers, librarians, translators and illustrators, and it is under the
heading of “other”, which designers must present themselves.
recognize – without fear of being wrong – when you see him attracted to some edition
that highlights the other titles, when they open the book and smell it, but the most
obvious, they run their fingers stroking the printed sheets to feel the ink,
varnishes, engravings, firmness of binding, corners
rounded and when they open it, they don’t go to the index or to the sipnosis,
straight to the inside pages, they try to see what’s beyond where
they are stitched and linked together.
In this forum, while the hustle and bustle barely creeps in, there are designers exhibiting their works: with topics ranging from irreverence to anecdote on how to survive designing books, methods to emphasize creativity, different ways to be effective and even break through in this world . Among them, a phrase by Víctor Martínez, last speaker of this meeting, professor and authority on the subject: “When someone claims that graphic design is dead, it is enough to take him for a walk to a bookstore or a supermarket, palpable and inalienable samples of the presence of design in everyday life ”. It turns out that in these two places all we see is design, especially graphics.
As a designer,
There are three things that come to mind when we think of books: printing,
covers and typography. With their respective nuances, impression implies that one
can deviate to appreciate the production: binding, formats, thicknesses.
On book covers, such as the first presentation of the book you want to be
bought, opened and read at ease. And last but not least, the
typography, as the essence that gives life to the millions of stories that
It is curious
Account that, having all the books classified by publishers,
they begin to perceive styles according to each seal. Tusquets, maybe one of
most recognizable for their black covers and classic openwork typeface in
white, with a photo that fits perfectly in the same format as always,
she repeats herself in the design to tell different things. Looking for
nuances, one can notice those publishers looking for – beyond
a good sale— attract readers by design, be it your covers and
formats, even at the cost of the price. Hence, if one visits the stand of
Sixth Floor, El Zorro Rojo, Eldevive or Tecolote can stay for hours
admiring the design of his productions, which is reflected in the personality
from the publisher, in texts and stories.
You may be interested: DesignLifer. Criticism of the redesign of …
As for the typography, coincidentally,
Today I find a phrase by Jorge de Buen that to the letter states: «In the
Editorial design, the first decision is the font. It has to be one
firm decision, because all other parameters are cascaded
when you change the letter. Choose an excellent, legible, complete type and trust
with all your strength that this decision has been good. Don’t fall for the
temptation to change it halfway. That would be giving in to your own
boredom, not that of the future reader ».
That task of selecting a good font,
who must live in the anonymity of the eye and serve only as a showcase for
Telling stories is such a strong decision that hierarchy should deserve
that De Buen mentions. Not an act of logotyping, letting the computer
whimsically display fonts as we play which one is best
for our text. No. It must be the most important act, as if it were the
type of coating that we will put on a highway so that the
cars, and that will be a factor for people to reach their destination with the least
possible wear, without even looking at what material was made. This is how the
typography, which is required to give the reader the size, alignment,
interlining and form so that one only worries about reading.
Unfortunately, the type selection is often removed from a personal or meaningless taste, which is no other than accepting that one is the “other” among the professionals of the Fair. Those publishers who seek to sell more, dwarf the lyrics without realizing that they also dwarf the designer, close the line and play with the edges of the pages to offer a cheaper and more affordable product, leaving good editorial design in the background, where the designer acts more as a trainer, as an operator without the right to make decisions. And although he could do it, the profile often prevents him, the one with character and resolution seeks, rather, a space where his work is more appreciated, regardless of what he receives. And whoever hires him understands the value of what he pays, but that will be the subject of the next installment.