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Tag Archives: Publishing

The changing face of book design

Publishing in the UK is developing rapidly and so it is vital that our workforce develops too. As digital innovation continues to drive growth and as publishers gain access to increasing amounts of data, the skills required are changing and new job functions and departments are springing up across all forms of publishing.

(snippet from The London Book Fair website)

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Modern book design dates back to the early 1890s and William Morris’s Kelmscott Press. The books were expensive but beautiful. Morris designed his own typefaces, made his own paper and printed the books by hand. They were designed to be read slowly, to be appreciated and treasured, making an implicit statement about the ideal relationships between reader, text and author.

A century later and the next invention to change the design world so dramatically was the Macintosh computer. Introduced in 1983 it was the first mass market computer specifically made with the creative person in mind. With its graphical user interface, integrated graphics software (MacWrite & MacPaint) and postscript fonts they allowed a designer to not only typeset copy but to lay out pages ready for print, marking the end of Exacto knives, hot wax and galley type. HL Studios was there from these early beginnings and is proud to be amongst the first UK studios to use them as standard.

As the internet evolved from the early 1990’s increased speed and bandwidth has given designers a whole new media platform to create for. The bulk of a professional designer’s work is now either for the web or application UI elements, all of which will be viewed and experienced through a variety of media devices giving designers ever more creative opportunities.

For the millions of people browsing bookshops and websites today in search of the perfect read and the years of research into design and emotional response, the age old adage ‘never judge a book by its cover’ has never been so irrelevant!

 

 
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Posted by on May 15, 2014 in design news

 

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Spritz reading

A new mobile app will be loaded onto the forthcoming Samsung Galaxy S5 and Gear 2 smart watches. The aim is to increase your reading speed up to 1,000 words-per-minute by flashing the words at you one at a time. 

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Reading basics

Traditional reading involves publishing text in lines and moving your eyes sequentially from word to word. For each word, the eye seeks a certain point within the word (Optimal Recognition Point or ORP), after your eyes find the ORP, your brain starts to process the meaning of the word that you’re viewing. With each new word your eyes move and then seek out the ORP for that word. Once the ORP is found, processing the word for meaning and context occurs and your eyes move to the next word. When your eyes encounter punctuation within and between sentences your brain is prompted to assemble all of the words that you have read and processes them into a coherent thought. When reading only around 20% of your time is spent processing content the remaining 80% is spent physically moving your eyes from word to word and scanning for the next ORP.

Where Spritz claims to be different

“Spritzing can be learned in less than 5 minutes and, if you don’t spritz for a month, no practice is needed to return to your previous speed. From the fonts used to the algorithms that process content, Spritz is designed to empower effective reading on a small display area. Removing the eye movement associated with traditional reading methods not only reduces the number of times your eyes move, but also decreases the number of times your eyes pass over words for your brain to understand them.”

We’ve tried the online version in the HL Studios office and whilst it’s definitely fun to use as a test, is it really a viable alternative to traditional reading?

 
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Posted by on March 31, 2014 in design news

 

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World Book Day 6th March 2014

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If you work in publishing, or you have children, you cannot miss the fact that today is World Book Day!

With events all over the country in bookshops, schools & libraries World Book Day is big news!

As an avid reader and lover of all things book, it surprises and saddens me how many people do not read for pleasure and Oxford University Press’s Books Beyond Bedtime report highlights this fact.

It revealed that many parents stop reading with their children from the age of 7 – when experts believe that just 10 minutes a day can make a dramatic difference to their educational attainment.

With Reading for Pleasure at the heart of the new National Curriculum introduced this term, this nationwide research involving nearly 1000 parents and school children aged 6 – 11  found 44% of 7-year-olds are rarely or never read to at home. This is despite the fact that nearly half of ‘reluctant readers’ of this age said they would enjoy reading more if their parents read with them.

According to Unesco (the United Nations agency which promotes knowledge), the biggest single indicator of whether a child is going to thrive at school and in work is whether or not they read for pleasure. Young people who read outside of class are 13 times more likely to read above the expected level for their age.

So if your not in fancy dress today, or taking part in a promotional activity, why don’t you make a nice hot drink and curl up with a good book?!

 
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Posted by on March 6, 2014 in design news, illustration news

 

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Project in focus

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The second installment in the Grubson Pug series hit the shelves this week to much excitement in the HL Studios office (and not just because a Benny Factor bought us chocolates)! 

Picking up the story a few days after the dramatic climax to book one, we join Banzai on his unusual nautical quest.

It’s New Year and a time for resolutions. Under the watchful eye of Horatio Fox, Banzai is persuaded to face the secrets of his closely-guarded carpet bag. Then he promptly vanishes from St Benfro.

Grubson Pug sets off in pursuit of his missing ship’s cat in a chase across Europe to Venice. Meanwhile, Banzai finally resolves his biggest burden – only to find himself in the middle of a new catastrophe!

Caught up in the confusion of Carnival, Banzai learns to accept help from friends when the situation is too much for one proud and trouble-prone cat.

As well as the familiar faces on board The Beagle, there are lots of new characters to meet in this second book: ‘Les Grubsons’ the French part of the family – Captain Dogmael and his cat aboard The Resolve – the water-dwellers in Venice (including gondoliers and the mayor) – and someone no one was expecting to see …

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Posted by on October 25, 2013 in design news

 

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Bookmachine everywhere!

Bookmachine Everywhere took place last night in
London, Oxford, Brighton, New York & Toronto.

Much to my own personal disappointment there was no Eurovision style link up, so no chance to wave (slightly off cue) and to hold up banners for our friends and Bookmachine colleagues across the pond.

There was however, at the Oxford event, a chance to eat delicious corporate branded cupcakes supplied by this months sponsor and winner of the Bookmachine.me banner image competition, yours truly, HL Studios.

The following images are what happens when an event that would clearly benefit from a buffet has cakes (you were warned!):

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Posted by on September 26, 2013 in duck tales

 

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Sponsors

HL Studios are proud to be once again sponsoring Bookmachine, Oxford.

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Come and meet us at the House Bar, Blue Boar Street, Oxford, OX1 4EE 
Wednesday 25th September from 6pm.
Tickets are available from bookmachine tickets

Who goes to Bookmachine?

The idea of Bookmachine is that people working in and around the book publishing industry meet up in an informal environment to develop ideas and make new contacts. You’ll find designers, editors, publishers, marketeers, sales professionals. Then there’s book lovers and writers. And not to forget, a few app developers, games designers and publishing students.

What happens there?

There are free drinks for early-birds, so people tend to show up on time and mingle with each other before the talk starts. Event host Charly Ford is there to introduce people to each other, so let Charly know beforehand or on the evening if there’s anyone specific you’d like to meet.

The talk itself will be by Emma Barnes, and it last for about 20 minutes, followed by a 10 minute Q&A with the speaker and plenty of time to meet others afterwards.

As a creative graphic design company, HL Studios has established a name for itself by delivering solutions that really work. We provide quality design that gets the message across and brings real-life innovative results to our many and varied clients. Samples of our work can be found at www.hlstudios.eu.com

We look forward to hopefully seeing you on Wednesday 25th September!

 
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Posted by on September 20, 2013 in design news

 

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Welcome Autumn!

Autumn

 

Back to school, nights drawing in, wasps everywhere, busy busy time in publishing, ahhhh love it!

 
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Posted by on September 6, 2013 in design news

 

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