Picture Book Anatomy

In order to design a book it is important to know the parts of a book and how to use them to tell a sequential story.

Download pdf | A document diagramming some of the basic parts of a book.

Gutter | This is the fold in the middle of the book. It is an element that needs to be a major consideration when designing images for a book. Avoid placing important elements in or near the gutter. Elements placed too close to the gutter may disappear after the book is bound.

End paper | The paper at the beginning and end of a book. It is frequently a different color. The end paper has 2 functions. The first is to attach the cover to the pages. The end paper is glued to the hard board of the cover and the edge of page 1 to hold the pages in the book. The second it is use aesthetically as a transition into the story. The end paper may be illustrated.

Spine | The spine is on the outside of the book and lists the author, title and publisher. For most books the spine is all that is showing. Don’t overlook its importance.

Case cover | The case cover is the artwork that is glued to the outside of the book. It is usually the same artwork as the dust jacket.

Dust jacket | Wraps around the book with flaps that have a synopsis of the book and an author biography.

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