full count

Jesse Marinoff Reyes:

from the Jesse Marinoff Reyes baseball portfolio. This collection has more of the sports book “look” than my other covers, but are I hope, as entertaining to look at for the fans. LET’S GO BATTAH, BATTAH!

JMR Design

The Only Way I Know
Penguin Books, 1998
Design: Jesse Marinoff Reyes
Photograph: Jed Jacobsohn/Allsport
Art Director: Paul Buckley

The softcover version, with action-shot alternative.

JMR Design

The Only Way I Know
Viking, 1997
Design: Jesse Marinoff Reyes
Photograph: Walter Ioos, Jr.
Art Director: Paul Buckley

This is, in the parlance, your quintessential “great man” biography (hardcover bios share a look with certain variation, but are somewhat uniform especially as they fall into their respective genres). But like the elegant and iconic former Baltimore shortstop and baseball’s Iron Man (a record 2,632 consecutive games played), the design had to be classic and without pretension. Most sports bios leading into the 1990s tended to be a bit clunky, and Cal Ripken, Jr. was not clunky. Apparently, my use of white space caught people off guard, including the Iron Man himself. I believed it allowed one to focus on the man, and then pause before taking in and pondering the meaning of the title. In the end, everyone agreed.

As an example of Ripken’s grace, the then-future Hall of Famer signed a copy of the book to me. It read, “They say you can’t judge a book by it’s cover. In this case, I think you can.”

Classic, and without pretension.

JMR Design

Fantasyland
Penguin Books, 2007
Design: Jesse Marinoff Reyes
Photo-Illustration: Viktor Koen
Calligraphy: Iskra Johnson
Stitching: Allcity Label & Tag Co, (NYC)
Art Director: Paul Buckley

This was fun: Identical to its hardcover predecessor but for a subtitle change and an added quote, Fantasyland was a design and art direction lollapalooza. Digital illustrator Viktor Koen created our subject as a chart of player statistical analysis, which we did with tongue firmly planted in cheek and with the enthusiastic assistance of the author. I wanted the title treatment to mimic the sort of script logos common to many professional (and non-professional) teams—like the Cleveland Indians, Baltimore Orioles, St. Louis Cardinals or Los Angeles Dodgers—so I commissioned a calligrapher, Iskra Johnson, whom I knew from my days in Seattle to create the typography. Once the lettering was final, I took it over to the garment district and found a place to render the design as actual stitching. Short of having the covers stitched outright, the hardcover version did benefit from the additional sculpt-embossing of the title.

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