“Rather than any one thing, I’d say it’s a combination of many things that makes a cover stand out—the colours, images, typography, and how all these elements are woven together to depict in the best possible manner what the book is all about” Misha
Don’t we all want to know who designs the beautiful book covers that beckon us to pick up a book? Well, this time round Bookaholicanonymous features a book cover designer to know what goes on inside the mind of a designer when designing a cover. We proudly present Misha Oberoi…
About Misha Oberoi: She is a freelance graphic designer. Her interests include book design, typography, branding, and publicity. She has a decade of experience in magazine and book design. She has also designed logos, brochures, catalogues, invites, labels, and so much more. She lives in New Delhi.
What do you think is that one thing that makes a book cover stand out?
Rather than any one thing, I’d say it’s a combination of many things that makes a cover stand out—the colours, images, typography, and how all these elements are woven together to depict in the best possible manner what the book is all about.
When and how does the process of designing a book cover begin?
In a way, it starts right when the author starts penning the book. Or an editor starts putting it together. Because authors and editors always do have some idea about how they want the cover to be. But for me, the process starts with the design brief that the publisher provides.
Do you have to read the full manuscript?
Not always. Along with the design brief, the editor provides a synopsis. But there are times when just the synopsis, or even inputs from the author and/or the editor are not enough. Then I do ask for the manuscript to get a better understanding of what the book is about.
Do you interact with the author?
Sometimes. But usually it is through the editor. The author has some ideas about the cover design or the images to be used on the cover and that information is shared with me through the editor, keeping in mind how effectively the idea will work for the marketing team. Because at the end it is all about selling the book.
What is the role of the editor of the book?
The editor plays a pivotal role in this process. Most of my interaction happens with the editor of the book, and it’s the editor who usually prepares the design brief for the designer. The editor also has to coordinate between the publisher, the author, and the designer to ensure that everyone is on the same page. It is great to work with an editor who is open to your ideas as well.
Name some of your all-time favourite books covers? (By others)
There are so many. It’s not possible to mention some. Each time I walk into a book store or browse books online, I fall in love with so many covers.
Which of your book covers do you think are your best works?
Day and Dastaan by Intezar Husain (Niyogi Books)
Stuck Like Lint (Niyogi Books)
Foodhall Cookbook (Roli Books)
PIX: The Student Issue
Which was the easiest and quickest book cover that you have designed?
When the initial ideas you get translate well into a cover design, and appeals to all the people involved in the process, then you can call it a quick work. I still won’t call it easy though. I can’t think of any covers right now that happened so quickly.
Which was the most difficult to design?
Further to what I just answered, sometimes it takes several rounds to finalise the design. SAAKSHI by SL Bhyrappa was one such cover that I did recently for Niyogi Books.
For which publishing houses do you design?
Niyogi Books, Pan Macmillan, Roli Books, Oxford University Press India, Routledge India, Bloomsbury, Konark
Other than book covers what other things do you design?
Coffee table books. Art Catalogues, Brochures, Posters, Invites. Plus I also do a lot of design work for the development sector.
Bookaholicanonymous wishes Misha and hopes to see more beautiful book covers from her…keep up the good work Misha!
Misha’s works can be seen at: www.mishaoberoi.com and instagram.com/misha.oberoi
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