Typesetting a book


I documented my graduate thesis project about chronic illness in a book called "The Waiting Room." I created a typographic texture of the over one hundred known autoimmune disorders for the cover. The pattern is disorienting, but familiar words and medical terms appear upon closer examination. It invites the reader to pay attention to illnesses that they may not be familiar with.

The book makes the reader wait. It begins with several grey spreads that tell the story of chronic illness in a quiet, shifting form. Finally, the reader arrives at the first section divider—a pink page with a quote tracked out in a similar way to the cover texture. The tracked treatment imitates the loneliness and distance that a person with chronic illness feels as they try to navigate the medical industry. 

I wanted to establish the experience of shifting in my text in order to echo the unwieldy world that the chronically ill face where their symptoms can change at any moment. This is evident in the uneven stacking of my columns. I was playful with the headers and larger text but was careful to establish consistent rules in order to highlight the shifts. 

COVID-19 offered a new ending for my book. I enlarged the gutter on my introduction and conclusion spreads to signify a parallel between the type of waiting that happens with chronic illness and with a pandemic. Another grey spread bookends the writing with text about waiting in the time of Corona. 

You can read more about my process on my blog​. The final outcomes and full book are available on the MICA Graphic Design MA 2020 exhibition website.