on the prevalence of the FS logo on the spine of recently released books

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on the prevalence of the FS logo on the spine of recently released books

kesäkuu 2, 10:43 am

Have you realized how in recent collections most, if not all books have the Folio logo at the bottom of the spine? In the previous one or two decades, most books either said 'Folio', 'Folio Society' or had a stylized 'FS'. Before that, many didn't even have any mark identifying the publisher.

What do you think about this change? Which do you prefer? I'm partial to the past couple decades design choices.

kesäkuu 2, 10:52 am

Dislike the change. Looks very out of place and ruins the aesthetic of many new titles.

They're obviously trying to reinforce their "brand" with a static logo that can be recognizable to the IG crowd.

Muokkaaja: kesäkuu 2, 10:57 am

I believe this has been the case for several years now, I vaguely remember there being another discussion on it on some thread or other when Folio started restructuring and moved away from the membership model. I believe the new management at the time wanted a fixed logo for brand recognition. The consensus is that barely anyone likes it because it can clash and detract from the individual style of each book/series. I find more bearable if it's on classic titles but it's particularly egregious on sci fi books or on some of the more eccentric designs like the newer Gormanghast.

kesäkuu 2, 10:57 am

There have been a couple of threads about this change including this one that contains photos:

It seems only books in existing series that started before the decision to use a uniform colophon avoid the newer colophon. Even reprints of older editions have the new colophon. I appreciated the creativity of the older designs and find the new one takes away from the design on the spine in some cases. I also consider it a reason to seek out the original releases (which are often cheaper anyway) rather than the reprints.

kesäkuu 2, 11:46 am

It was nicer when they matched the FS or Folio marking to whatever was going on designwise with the book. It's not exactly a dealbreaker but it looks very weird on stylized titles - the recent Roadside Picnic is a good example. The squiggly elegance of the logo clashes entirely with the geometric and near alien typeface for the authors. That's an edge case though and it didn't stop me buying the title, so in the end I'm an enabler.

kesäkuu 2, 12:54 pm

>5 A.Godhelm: there’s no worse example than American Gods. There’s no reason for it to have both “folio society” and the FS logo

kesäkuu 2, 1:02 pm

I appreciate when the logo matches the book. Looking at "Travels in West Africa," it has a cool jungle font. Similarly "The Assassins," has a cool arabesque font.

kesäkuu 2, 1:13 pm

>6 Geo135: to be fair that isn't too wildly out there, I think there's a modern trend in branding for companies that have a logo to have the accompanying full name underneath or to the side of the logo even if the logo incorporates the company's initials

In other instances though the logo already incporates the entire name of the company in which case the redundancy looks even more ridiculous, as in the case of Aston Martin

kesäkuu 2, 1:40 pm

I will say one book where the new logo works well is Walter Scott's Waverly -- they did a nice job of incorporating it into the spine design. In general, though, I don't mind the new logo as long as it's not prevalent in spines where it doesn't fit well. But, yes, there are some spines where it's very prevalent and clashes with the overall design.

kesäkuu 2, 4:51 pm

>9 HonorWulf: I was just about to mention this one! It sat on my shelf for a year before I even spotted it!

kesäkuu 2, 6:21 pm

>9 HonorWulf: Waverley? But that is actually the old-style logo with curlicues is it not?

kesäkuu 2, 6:48 pm

If you're going to have an icon logo then it pays to have it distinct from any design. Consider the Penguin cameo, which visually sits apart from any cover design like a sticker on a banana. FS seems to be matching colors with their logo, but the form itself is often dissonant with the spine design. It's a middleground approach that isn't as satisfying as either the cameo approach or a bespoke logo for each book. I think it works better as a consistent title page ornament and would prefer the words "Folio Society" on the spine in a style harmonious with the spine's design.

kesäkuu 2, 7:06 pm

>11 FitzJames: Hmmm, maybe! It looks a lot like the new logo, but with the letters done-up as thorns on a bush. I always thought it was a precursor for the new logo, but perhaps not.

kesäkuu 2, 9:27 pm

>13 HonorWulf: I could be wrong of course, but the post-2016 new logo (? might be off on the date there) features a perfect oval, the 'F' above and to the left (NW shall we say), the 'S' below and to the right (SE). The S of the new logo is also noticeably bellied.

The older logo is also an oval, but it might help to describe it instead as a rounded rectangle/oval. Further, the old version has the 'F' and the 'S' at the same level, with curlicues of the 'F' extending above, and of the 'S' below into the blank spaces of the oval. These curlicues adopt a shape similar to a number 3 on its side, flipped for each space respectively.

The Waverley seems to have the latter, even with the addition of thorns.

kesäkuu 3, 12:55 pm

>14 FitzJames: Sounds reasonable to me! Waverly is the only book on my shelf where the logo (new or old) is worked into the actual design of the spine -- wonder if there are any others!

kesäkuu 4, 6:04 am

I also prefer the older approach, incorporating the branding into the design. But it should be easy to understand the change without resorting to the intellectually lazy “IG crowd” - brands are supposed to be consistent. The logo creates an instantly recognizable icon you can spot anywhere, that’s the purpose of it.

Muokkaaja: kesäkuu 4, 6:38 am

>15 HonorWulf: They kind of did it with the Umberto Eco books

kesäkuu 4, 1:18 pm

A comparison of the differnt types of FS logos (colophons) can be seen in this earlier post.

kesäkuu 4, 2:54 pm

This is a pet hate of mine because it’s so unnecessary, and also something a standard mass market publisher would do.

What’s the point of FS being seller of fine press, bespoke designed books if they just slap their logo on every spine?

It’s only a couple of steps down from having a barcode on the back.

Worst of all is reprints of old series which replace the custom folio logo with the new one.

kesäkuu 4, 3:34 pm

I like the new approach. I find the logo discrete and tasteful enough, especially since it is generally colour-matched to the design of the book. This way they can't do something obnoxious like write FOLIO in vulgar boldface, which they did on several of my older Folios.

kesäkuu 4, 4:12 pm

I really preferred the individual approach to this - it was so much more creative.

kesäkuu 4, 5:24 pm

>17 SinsenKrysset: Wow, very subtle with the Eco books! You need both volumes to see it. Very cool (and another thorn design a la Waverly).

kesäkuu 5, 4:48 am

>17 SinsenKrysset: That looks great! Thanks for highlighting that

kesäkuu 5, 11:37 am

>17 SinsenKrysset:

As I have them shelved alphabetically, I had never noticed that. Thank you for pointing it out!