The Genius Behind the Design

The Genius Behind the Design

“You can’t judge a book by its cover.”

Mark Sullivan, art director for our book department, along with other artists on staff, might protest this saying. That’s because they know how much time and energy goes into creating books with just the right cover.

Mark has been designing top-notch books for SAMP and Servant since January of 2002. Our books always look great, and it appears that Mark has it down to a science, making it look like an easy task to pull off. However, few are aware of just how much science plays a part in book and cover designs.

There’s the science of coming up with just the right design concept, colors, fonts, white space, images, paper, spine size, cover finishes and, of course, keeping such a project within budget and meeting multiple deadlines. And no one in history, as of yet, has figured out the science of keeping everyone on various teams happy with each design (rumor has it Mark comes close!).

Mark also directs freelancers, and communicates with and meets specific requirements for several printers. In addition to all of that, Mark keeps up with today’s rapidly changing technology in electronic media, providing files needed for various e-readers.

Whatever it takes, Mark flows with it and the outcome speaks for itself. The company is happy to have such a tremendous talent behind its book products.


When asked where he gets his inspiration for so many different styles of covers, Mark says, “I put myself in the place of the book buyer, standing in front of so many options in a bookstore. I think about what would make me pick up a book, flip it over to read more about it and then walk it up to the counter to buy it.”

Kudos to Mark! Many thanks for all he does to make our books look so welcoming for those who just might, indeed, judge a book by its cover!

Included in our line of fall books is Father Greg Friedman’s Advent With the Saints. Greg’s daily reflections on various saints are in a handy pocket-sized book that can be easily reflected upon during the upcoming Advent season. Greg also offers daily actions and prayers that inspire the reader for this time of “joyful, expectant waiting.”

Photo and composite by Sandy Digman


About the Author

Even more than enjoying being an art director at Franciscan Media, Sandy Digman loves spending time with her three grandsons, who are quite the artists themselves! Sandy is truly inspired by them as well as everyone around her!
  • Allan Wright

    Mark did a fantastic job on my upcoming book titled Jesus the Evangelist-March 2013. I want him to know that even before my book is released I’ve gotten wonderful feedback on the cover. Thanks Mark! Allan F. Wright