End of the Glacier by Alyson Hallett
Published by the Wilhelmina Barns-Graham Trust, 2023

Designed by James Brook

ISBN 978 1 7384 111 0 8

Soft cover | 210 x 148 mm | 32 pages | Printed by Gomer Print, Wales, on 140 gsm Edixion Offset with a cover printed on 250 gsm Edixion Offset

Alyson Hallett is a prize-winning poet and writer who lives in Somerset. Her publications include sole-authored and co-authored books of poetry, collections of short stories as well as drama, an audio diary and an essay commissioned for BBC radio. She frequently collaborates with sculptors, dancers, glass makers, visual artists, and musicians. End of the Glacier is a collection of 27 poems by Alyson Hallett written in conversation with the work of Wilhelmina Barns-Graham.

The brief from the Wilhelmina Barns-Graham Trust suggested that the design should combine elegant and considered typography with the lo-fi immediacy of a fanzine. The book is typeset in three weights of Freight Text Pro with the cover title set in Fabriga Bold. The poems all hang from the same line in the layout and are typeset in Freight Text Pro book with their titles set two point sizes larger and in bold. The poems have been designed by the author with unconventional layouts and distinct typographic details that are specific to each poem, which I preserved when I typeset the book. Having some order in the layout with all the poems starting in the same place helps anchor these visually different poems on the page. Secondary information (endnotes and colophon etc) are typeset in Freight Text Pro light to create a distinction between the poems and the other information. Page numbers are set on the bottom left on both recto and verso pages, indented below the poems – an unconventional element of the layout that always draws queries from printers (“are the page numbers all meant to be on the left?”) but is another design feature which helps ground the poems on the page.

The cover features a drawing by Wilhelmina Barns-Graham, Glacier Study II, 1949 that wraps around the cover. The original intention was to print the drawing in black only on a coloured stock such as Colorplan but budgetary restrictions meant that it had to be printed full colour on a more economical paper. I  gave the author and publisher several options colour-matched to Colorplan papers with this pale blue the most popular one. 

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