Back in April Owen received an exciting opportunity from the legendary Paul Buckley, Senior VP Creative Director at Penguin Random House to create the full cover for Stanislas Dehaene’s, ‘How We Learn’. A hugely successful psychologist and cognitive neuroscientist, Dehaene has authored more than 190 publications including ‘How We Learn’ a fascinating dive into the mechanics of the human brain and the relationship between human learning and AI.
Surrounded by brilliance and with a fascinating subject to work with, Owen set about creating a cover that would not only reflect the contents of the book but entice readers in with a creative approach to scientific subject matter.
With a specific request not to include imagery of the human brain and to include elements of both human and machine, Owen began to work up a concept featuring a layered papercut silhouette interspersed with scientific symbols that spread across the cover. This was complemented by a typographic title cut into the top layer to reveal overlapping layers of text, hinting at the complexity of the subject matter in a bright and approachable way.
Bridging the gap between science and art and creating work that appeals to both science fans and lay people alike can be a challenge. Owen approached this challenge by working with a bright and select colour palette and stepping away from the dreary colours and textbook style images which are so often paired with scientific publications. The result is an enticing cover that catches the eye and hints at a fascinating subject matter with both a human and machine element.