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07-11-2012

Book and Magazine Design Tips for Peecho Publishers

Designing books and magazines is an art in itself, one which is oftenhard to master when you’re taking your publication from pixels to print.Luckily, if you’re using Peechoyou don’t have to worry too much about standardization and print-readycomponents, but there are still a number of things to consider if youwant to get the most out of your print product. In this post, we’ll betalking to graphic designer Marije van der Hoest who has somehandy design tips to share with Peecho publishers.Marije, what are some general things to consider when designing a PDFfor a book or a magazine?

The first thing you have to think about is the software you want to use.I recommend Adobe’s suite of products and InDesign, in particular,because it has all the necessary tools and features you could hope foras a book or magazine designer.

 

Aside from that, here are some general pointers:

 

    • If you will offer your publication in print and you don’t want anyempty pages at the end, design it with an even number of pages.

 

    • Define the size and orientation of the publication before you get intothe nitty gritty details of the interior.

 

    • Set the parameters of your layout and try to keep this consistentthroughout the book, are you using columns or will the text becentered in a single block? What kind of alignment fits your designbetter? Tip: justifying your text will help you avoid awkward spacingissues.

 

    • Consider dividing your publication in chapters and preparing a tableof contents.

 

    • Choose a set of complementary fonts and heading styles and don’t usemore than 2 or 3 fonts in one page.

 

    • Avoid using bold type, it’s ok for heads and subheads but won’t lookas good in your main text. It’s best to emphasize things by usingitalics.

 

And speaking of fonts, what types do you prefer to use?

It depends on the subject of the publication. I generally advise peopleto stick to ‘neutral,’ readable fonts like Times New Roman, Arial andHelvetica. Fonts that are too stylistic (with swirls and other details)make your book look busy and are often difficult to read. If you’redesigning a magazine, use a single font for the main text to keep thingsconsistent, then you can get playful with headings or subheadings.

 

In addition, remember to vectorize your fonts to avoid any changes orstretching when your publication is printed.

Can you share some tips for spacing and margin considerations?

Sure, let’s start by looking at margins and bleeds. Peecho mirrors anyelements that are close to the page’s end so you can get away withimages and text that are extending too close to the edge. However, Ilike to keep at least 1 cm of white space along the edge of the page -this helps you avoid misprints and lets your overall design ‘breathe.’Another thing to consider is that you’ll need to leave a bit more spacefor the inner margin or gutter when you’re submitting a publication forprint. Otherwise that inner margin will appear smaller than the rest.

 

As for spacing, don’t put more than 13 words in one line, mind the gapsbetween paragraphs and avoid hyphenation at the end of a line as much aspossible. As a rule, do not double space your paragraphs. Your linespacing should not be larger than 1.5 times the size of your chosentypeface.

 

Indent your paragraphs in a way that is relative to the size of the typeand avoid the tab key. Finally, watch for too much white space betweenwords.

What about image resolution?

Images need to have a resolution of at least 300 dpi to get the bestresults in print.

What about the book or magazine cover?

Covers are always fun to design. Above all, you have to think about whatyour overall story tells and make sure to convey that in the cover.People always make a link between the cover and the quality and natureof your publication’s content. Make it catchy but not too busy.

And finally what color scale do you recommend, particularly for designsthat will be printed?

RGB is the most widely recommended color scale.

Check out this comprehensive list of magazinedesign tutorials or this handy bookdesign guide for more extensive advice. And follow us on Pinterestfor some more tips and inspiration!

Jolien

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