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We have been working with the Design for Publishing course at Norwich University of Arts since 2015. The course focuses on typography and image making for publishing across many disciplines (newspapers, magazines, books) and we saw an opportunity to work with the students on a specific book design project. Each year we set a bespoke cover brief, focusing on a different genre or area of publishing and work with them through the process to create a final full cover.

Over the course of a number of weeks (usually around six) we host weekly crit sessions to respond to the work they’ve produced, sometimes involving editors for genuine feedback, so they can hear an authentic publishing perspective. Rather than asking for one final outcome we make the process a central part of the experience, trying to mirror how we might work on covers ourselves, developing a se-ries of ideas at the same time rather than just focusing on one final outcome. At the end of the project we invite all the students into the office for a ‘real’ cover meeting, where members of our Sales, Marketing and Publicity teams offer their feedback and try to recreate a version of our cover presentation meeting.