"Pressure comes from the shrunken images on Amazon, a need for covers to be more multifunctional, and, on the other hand, a renewed desire to reclaim the tactile qualities of textured, gorgeous print. The idea of a book cover as a singular form has vanished some time ago, and [Eric Himmel, the editor in chief of Abrams publishing] says, "I don't have a clear view of the future."The discussion of the business behind the selling of books and of designing book covers is fascinating. There's a lot of fun new ideas being bandied about, but Paul Buckley, the VP, Executive Creative Director at Penguin, is concerned about cost:
Then he saw how Goldberg's students incorporated the vocabulary of bookmaking into multimedia cover layouts. Rather than borrow techniques from documentary film, they used typography in more sophisticated ways that seemed to be digitally-native expressions of book design. Her students also used moving images, video, and audio."
"Benefits have not yet caught up to the costs of this extra content. Because the viewer's not going to pay for it." Publishers' art departments haven't traditionally come equipped with highly tech-savvy illustrators and typographers. And even as more digitally-capable designers arrive, so too will their demand for new tools to support their talents.The whole thing is worth a read.
Judging a Book by it's Cover