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Admittedly, we do have a tendency to push the boat out with our covers. Why have just one special finish, when you can have five? Why use beige paper, when you can go for gold? Yet sometimes it is good to concentrate on the essentials only, because the things you see at second glance often stay in the memory longer.

In the novum+ section this month, it´s all about “accessibility”, about designing things so that they can also be accessed by those with a handicap, better still, which work well for all. This can be achieved by paring the design right down to the fundamentals, by communicating clearly and leaving aside all unnecessary, decorative accessories. And making it work for all people, with or without handicap.


Novum 12.19 is also available for 8.99 euros as PDF

To buy the printed issue, please visit our Shop

Love at second glance

We have tried to transfer this principle to the cover design for this December issue: At first sight it looks very plain and simple, with a white paper, smooth surface and a black-and-white printed image. But on closer inspection, you uncover its charms: the new Zeta paper with extra-smooth surface excites the sense of touch, and delivers a very rich finish for the image. The chosen motif for this issue cleverly challenges our senses. The Dutch calligraphic artist Guido de Boer loves to play with perception and push the boundaries between image and text.
Not being able to understand something immediately can be a burden for people with a handicap. Good design can help make life easier for them. Our cover, too, is something you have to look twice at to work out, but we hope it arouses your curiosity.

The paper

Zeta is an all-round genius and can be used in a variety of ways, from business stationery to image brochures or packaging. The special appeal of the material lies in its diversity, because it is not only available in six white to light shades, also different surfaces are available. From micro to hammer and linen can be found for every application the right thing, brand new in the range are the surfaces extra smooth and ribbed and the colors diamond, mother of pearl and cream. In addition, individual watermarks are available for the FSC-certified paper, and Zeta is well-suited for all common printing and finishing processes.
For this edition we used Zeta extra smooth in the color diamond in the grammage 300 gsm.

The design

»The motif is a sketch for a painting«, explains Guido de Boer of High on Type. »It is a kind of summary of what I do as an artist, namely exploring the tension between text and image. The design asks the observer in a subtle way: What can you see? Do you see an image or do you read a text?«



Roel Backaert (NLD)

Tarek Atrissi (SPA/NLD)

Stitch Design (USA)

Dana Dijkgraaf (NLD)

100 Jahre Bauhaus




Grauwert (GER)

Tactiles (HUN)

Sabina Sieghart (GER)

The Dot Watch (KOR)

Helping Hands (GER)

Aravit (ISR)

Ami Medical App (GBR)

Schweizergestaltung (GER)



Paper: Zeta (Reflex Paper), Diamant extra glatt, 300 g/qm

Print: F&W Druck- und Mediencenter

Design: Guido de Boer (NLD)

Photography: Janina Engel