The Art of Book Design: East of Eden

John Steinbeck. East of Eden: Penguin Books, 2012.Cover Art by Kathryn McNaughton

Kathryn McNaughton is a Canadian artist from Toronto. She was commissioned by Penguin Books, UK to design a series of covers for Steinbeck’s classic novels. This one is my favourite, but if you click the link below you’ll find the rest of the series.


From: ShitIheart

The Art of Book Design: The Water Babies


Charles Kingsley. The Water Babies. London: Macmillan and Co., 1886 — Source.

There are a lot of small details that make this one of my favourite vintage book covers; the blue leather etched to look like water, the brightly coloured flowers that float, bubbles and birds and flowing lines all adding up to the sense of being underwater.


From: The Public Domain Review, The Art of Book Covers (1820 – 1914)

The Art of Book Design: The History of the Devil and The Idea of Evil

The History of the Devil and the Idea of Evil; from the earliest times to the present day. Paul Carus, Chicago: The Open Court Publishing Company, 1900- Source

A devilish design today done in flame red on matte black replete with a bat-winged demon (who’s looking very contemplative) and a seductive snake.




Very Curious Artform – Strandbeest

Whilst being sick, I came across this very peculiar video:

The creations look eerily organic and uncanny alive and I have found the creators site very interesting, or,  as Caine would name it “a time sink”. It is a fascinating blend of art and engineering. I think that in a virtual PC simulation it could be combined with real evolutionary algorithms these beasts could really “evolve” into even more bizzare shapes.

It also reminded me of Caine, I think she would love it.

Tree Tuesday

The spring arrival of cherry blossom season is cause for celebration across Japan. There are published charts that track the progress of the blossoms from south to north and every region has festivals to bring people outside to enjoy the splendid views. I’ll never get to Japan to see the spectacle in person, but thanks to the internet I can still see the splendid views and live a bit vicariously. I’ve gathered a few of my favourite photos of cherry blossoms in Japan for you to see as well. Enjoy.  [Read more…]

The Art of Book Design: My Garden in Spring

E. A. Bowles. My Garden in Spring. London: T. C. & E. C. Jack, 1914 — Source. Cover design by Katherine Cameron

I love books. Real books with real paper are a treat for the senses. I love the way they feel in my hand, the way they smell and the way they catch my eye. That last bit, the eye-catching, is what this new series is all about; the art of designing striking books that make you stop and take a closer look. My original interest in starting this series came from The Public Domain Review and I’ll be pulling from their collections and lots of other sources. Every day you’ll get a beautiful book to admire. Many will be old, but not all. There will be a lot of art nouveau because I like art nouveau, but I’ll try to change it up and keep it interesting. I’m also willing to feature any book you might want to share as long as it’s beautiful and eyecatching. Send any of your suggestions to me at The address is always in the sidebar.

Our Book today is in celebration of Spring. The art nouveau design is by Katherine Cameron and together with E.A. Bowles they created a series of garden books. If you click on the link below you can also find the covers for My garden in Autumn and Winter and My garden in Summer. Together they make a beautiful set.

From: My Beautiful Book Finds



Precious Tulips

From Nightjar,

These photos were taken in the last day of winter, just before the equinox. I brought these little red tulips from my grandma’s garden after she died and I planted them in a pot to be sure I wouldn’t lose them. It turned out to be a great idea and by moving it around I was able to capture them in different light conditions.

©Nightjar, all rights reserved

©Nightjar, all rights reserved

©Nightjar, all rights reserved

©Nightjar, all rights reserved