Tuesday 12 April 2016

Guest Post: Designing the Cover for Peter Bunzl's Cogheart

Last week we were delighted to reveal the cover for Cogheart by Peter Bunzl. As promised, today we are joined by Usborne designer, Kath Millichope, to tell us about how she went about designing the Cogheart cover, and we also have this extra-special treat for you - this fabulous animated version of the cover that (the obviously multi-talented) Peter Bunzl has created:

“On reading the manuscript to prepare for the cover design, I began to immediately see the imagery in my head - it would needed to have a magical and fantastical feel to reflect atmosphere and adventure of the story, but I also felt that it should be action-packed, as it is full of flying machines whizzing around and the children themselves seem to even tumble through the book!

There are so many gorgeous elements – from talking foxes to mechanical housekeepers – that I wanted to show as much as possible of Lily's world, and I began to think it would be exciting to create a world that actually looks like it was itself made of clockwork. To achieve this, I used a combination of photographic and illustrated elements, creating a layered, drop-shadow look, giving the illusion of it being a bit 3D, where each part looks as though it could move independently. I then added the zeppelin lines in a kind of figure of eight, to both represent the continuous cycle of the clock, and also the route of the adventure that the children would follow.

We managed to secure fabulous illustrator Becca Stadtlander to work on the project. Her muted-pallette style has a beautifully timeless feel and perfectly suits the dark Victorian backdrop, while her characters have a quirky, magical quality with angular joints – all of which suited the clockwork style.

I finished the cover with a sprinkling of what could be stars or snow - I imagined the characters to be in a sort of starry snow-globe, which could be tipped over like an egg-timer to start the adventure all over again!”

Cogheart by Peter Bunzl is out in the UK on September 1st 2016. Share the adventure with #Cogheart. You can follow Peter on Twitter @peterbunzl. 


  1. This is an absolutely brilliant cover!

  2. What font is this? or as close as possible! I'm desperate for my classroom display!