Type Battle 32 // Book Cover Meme

Ngoc Ngo's picture


You will create a book cover, using a fictitious title and an image from the LIFE photo archive.

Winner take all, no holds barred. May the best designer win.


Follow these steps below:

1. The first article title on the Wikipedia Random Articles page
(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Special:Random) is the title of your book.

2. Go to the LIFE photo archive (http://images.google.com/hosted/life) and enter the title (or part of the title) as your search term. Use any image from the search result for your book.

3. (optional) Include your name as the author of your book.

4. Use your graphics application of choice to throw them together,
and post the result.

- Final Image size: 550 width. 72 dpi*
- Color: Any
- Format: JPG or PNG

*Please try to keep your file sizes to a minimum! Our server is taking quite a beating with all this imagery. So compress, compress compress! Thanks :)


This is your chance to stretch your type muscles on a weekly basis. You have one week to create and submit your entry. Anyone may submit a design response to the challenge. You may enter as often as you wish. Post anytime. Critiques and comments are welcome throughout the game, from participants and spectators alike. Smack talk is encouraged.

As with any street battle, there is no panel of judges and no prize — only the ability to call yourself the best on the block.

Link directly to this battle: http://www.typophile.com/battle32
Link to the battle directory: http://www.typophile.com/typebattles

Batlock's picture

And does the long time lurker who had to say something today show something today? I mean winning it must be a breeze for you. :-)

What about joining in the fun?

nina's picture

I'd say my favourites are –
Why We Fight, by Jos Buivenga
Getting the Fear, by rubenDmarkes
Hilli, by pennANDink
Nebraska, Indiana, by pica pusher
Spear, by Nick Job

Though I also really like these:
we are the weirdos – beejay
Chromotherapy – dervish7
Lake Kizaki – fbrccn
The Creek Drank the Cradle – rsmallbone
Penning Trap – Batlock (a bit overdone in my opinion, but I still really dig the concept)

This was grrreat fun. :) I love these battles …

mattquirk's picture

Title: 6LoWPAN
LIFE image search query: "Lo"


jupiterboy's picture

These are sticking with me:

Christian Heinrich

Ruben David Marques

Richard Smallbone (33rd Street)

Matthew Laws's picture

Been playing fast and loose with the perspective . . .

dezcom's picture

Written by B. Crane?


InterwebNoise's picture

Deville --

I'm going to disagree with your top pick -- mostly out of convenience. I haven't gone searching for the others yet.

I happen to like EnergonCube's cover . I don't see it as "slapping type over an image." While the overall design is clean, there's a lot of tension being created by the sinking, vertical type against the horizontal grain created by the wood planks. Add to that a good use of scale. Overall, EnergonCube has achieved a good sense of foreboding.

While it's not the best here, it certainly isn't the worst. Just because some of these covers don't agree with your personal taste, doesn't mean you have to slam them. You're entitled to your opinion. But, if you're going to offer critism, provide some constructive feedback.

...Or post something of your own and shut the F up.

timd's picture

Opinion and unsupported criticism have always been part of these type battles, let's not start getting precious about a piece of fun.
Remember smack talk is encouraged.


nina's picture

InterwebNoise: Correct me if I'm wrong, but the way I read it Deville liked EnergonCube's cover, and a couple others, but is dissing the majority of the submissions. Which, agreed, is kind of an easy stance to take. But what the hell :)

InterwebNoise's picture

It must be so easy to criticize and run. How convenient for you.

InterwebNoise's picture


I didn't read it that way. But if you're right, mea culpa.

Indiego's picture

these covers have some astounding photos and some really delicious titles.
some of my favourites till now, in random order:

think secret by anunoriginaldesign, for type, title and concept;
it couldn't happen here by thunter, for title, photo edit and title design;
artificial imagination by cdn, for concept and photo;
the devil has my double, by darkshipp, for title, photo edit, concept and font;
we are the weirdos, by beejay, for photo edit, concept, title and font;
office fight by batlock, for photo edit, title and title design;
the profession of arms by teaim, for title and photo;
hilli by pennandink, for photo and font;
robertson barracks by ineedsubstance, for photo edit and title design;
university hospital by pyros, for title design;
bluebell morning by hexasketch, for photo, title and title design;
symphony no 79 fbrccn, for concept;
why we fight by jos buivenga, for photo, title, font and colour;
waverly school district 145 by jared benson, for font and additional graphics;
rivalry by abstractmullet, for concept, title and title design;
timeline of tuberous sclerosis by queneau, for concept and title design;
spear by nick job, for title design;
tall tales & legends by justin childress, for concept;
dear mother by heathink, for cover colour;

i'm sure i've missed a lot of other ingenious entries.

beejay's picture

no particular order, but some that i really liked include:

Cedar Lake by EnergonCube
33rd Street by richard smallbone
omega squad by quincunx
waverly school district by JB
getting the fear by ruben
alien language by jac
hilli by penn and ink

eliason's picture

Most likely to see on the shelves: Nebraska, Indiana by pica pusher

Great choice of font: SP-375 by itc_james

Great manipulation of photo: Alien Language by jac; Shelburne by rsmallbone

Great integration of photo: Exhibition Road by Matthew Laws

Clever use of graphics: Quantum Pseudo-Telepathy by themonkey; The Devil has my Double by darkshipp

Best binding: Electronic Commerce Regulations 2002 by WOWBROW

Clever use of obscure wiki entry: V.C.S. Nuclear Generating Station by jupiterboy

Other favorites:
gather dot com by genericboy
Illustrated History of IMACS by colaboy
zero friction by LLCoolJCL
George Szell by Marten Fischer
getting the fear by rubenDmarkes
Rivalry by abstractmullet
Hideki Niwa by noktulo
spear by Nick Job
Armchair Apocrypha by jdat
Stack Cake by dave.jensen
Ugly Little Monsters by altaira
Alexander Graham Bell by brandonhunter

dezcom's picture

The tw0 that stand out head and shoulders above the rest are:

33rd Street by rsmallbone and.

Dear Mother...Love Albert by HeathInk


ChrisM70's picture

I made up the subhead so I could
tie the image to the title.

graphic designer

genericboy's picture

I'm just going to leave everyone else to pick specifics, because so many of these are excellent that it would take me all night to pick out through my favourites! There were at least 10 books here that I probably would have bought on impulse based on the covers.

@Deville: I don't think it says anywhere that people need to be practicing designers to join in! I know that impromptu crits and mild abuse are part and parcel, but there's really no need to get upset about it. It's just a bit of fun.

Take care, Andi


rsmallbone's picture

Lots of nice pieces here, but these stood out for me:

Nebraska, Indiana by pica pusher
Why We Fight by Jos Buivenga
Love's Unfolding Dream by Hawkwood
Penning Trap by Batlock
Cedar Lake by EnergonCube


ihatemike's picture

first time posting! george richter is just a random name i thought up.

GAPS's picture

Personal favourites:

Dear Mother... Love Albert — HeathInk
Office Fight — Batlock (faux pas be damned)

Really liked something about boicozone’s Gorgon, and WOWBROW’s Electronic Commerce Regulations 2002 is great for it’s application of a somewhat incongurous image to such a precise style replication.

Much else made my list, but going over it again, they all either had something small that bugged me (the text at the top, and leaving in the darker bar at the bottom of Waverley School District 145, for example), or didn’t reach a level of harmony (like my own entry, I guess).

This has been fun, though. Think I’ll stick around.
Why no specific RSS feed for Type Battles?

aNEW designs's picture

My Wiki search brought up "heart attack". In the LIFE image search for "heart" this photo was found of an Operating Room.

Vladimir Tamari's picture

Nice project I like the idea of random subjects from Wikipedia with random images from LIFE!

Quincunx's picture

While I enjoy seeing more new covers, officially this battle is over. A new one has already been posted. :)

EnergonCube's picture

How do we know who the winner is?

Quincunx's picture

> How do we know who the winner is?

I don't know. I don't think there is one. Or someone would have to organize a real voting system.

EnergonCube's picture

Ok then. I thought that might be the case, but wasn't sure.

timd's picture

‘At the end of the day, football is the winner’

Bit nation/age specific reference but I hope you get the sentiment.


dezcom's picture

There never are officially designated winners in any of Typophile's battles.

See the 1st post where it says: "As with any street battle, there is no panel of judges and no prize — only the ability to call yourself the best on the block."


eliason's picture

Although getting chosen for the Type Battles main page is a prize of sorts.

dizerr's picture

Smart Went Crazy by Diane Faye Zerr.

Nora Mysiak's picture

There are certainly some strange random Wikipedia choices. Each one more mysterious than the next.

njmedin's picture

Random Wiki: Ethical Consumer
Image Search: Consumer

Bank Gothic and a tiny bit of Bembo

dezcom's picture

Yes, it is enough to make you squoosh your type :-)


caseyhill's picture

My first entry... Let me know what you think.

- Casey

Nora Mysiak's picture

Yet another strange Wikipedia random hit. Hongo station, I believe, is actually in Japan but I threw in a counterfeit Chinese train ticket for lack of the correct type.

peterBrown's picture

The bush baby.

dezcom's picture

Peter, That is hilarious :-)


peterBrown's picture

thanks Chris :)

hunterjax's picture

just joined, first submission - I know this contest is over but thought I would submit anyway - feedback would be appreciated! Thanks . . .

GLASNOST's picture


rxs's picture

Title is in Futura Light Condensed and author is in Archer Light.

54's picture

ditheringsurface's picture


Bauer Bodoni Std and Helevetica

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