Book design and production

Curriculum vitae

 A thoughtful, rational approach
and practical, creative solutions



I am a professional graphic designer, with many decades of experience in illustrated book publishing. I can take any project through all the stages of the publishing process: commissioning, manuscript development, template design, typesetting and layout, illustration, colour origination, proofing, and pre-press. I also do general design for print: posters, flyers, brochures, etc.

I studied at the Central School of Art and Design (now University of the Arts London). Since then, I have worked for Mitchell Beazley, the Inner London Education Authority, Equinox (Oxford) Ltd, and Andromeda Illustrated Reference, predominantly on popular science and history titles.

I now offer freelance or contract project management, new product development, design, editorial, typesetting, and illustration services. Past clients have included
Brown Reference Group, Macmillan Education, Marshall Editions, The National Trust, OUP, Philip Allen Updates, and Usborne Publishing.

Since 2005, I worked principally for Manson Publishing, managing a range of professional medical, veterinary, earth science, and plant science titles. Following the acquisition of Manson Publishing by Taylor & Francis in 2013, I became involved in the design and production of new titles for their medical portfolio. I would like to expand my client base and am happy to discuss new commissions, large and small.

You can see some examples of my work on the following pages. Alternatively, you can see a PDF presentation (45 MB) of a larger selection, including some clickable sequences of pages, here: AK_Portfolio. Download and open with Acrobat X or Acrobat Reader X, or later.


‘Ayala has produced the most complex and demanding titles for Manson Publishing, precisely because she brings together design, editorial and artwork skills, plus a thorough analytical approach to each project. I recommend her personal and technical skills to anyone wanting to create books to the highest standards.’

Michael Manson, Manson Publishing

‘Her ability to work to the most exacting of standards has really impressed, as has her ability to quickly understand complex ideas and medical minutiae and translate those into pages that are both pleasing to the eye and technically exact… She has also managed to accommodate a multitude of changes despite a tight timeframe…
I cannot recommend her highly enough.

Dr. Jonathan Botting, Ed. “Brown’s Skin and Minor Surgery, 5th Edition”