How to create a beautiful cover page in LaTeX using TikZ

Cover Page Latex Tikz

First impressions can make a big difference and to make sure you’re making the right one, you need to think about the first thing that is seen by your reader, the cover page. That's why it is important to create a clean and professional cover for the subject matter. 

In this latex tutorial, we will learn how to create a cover page in LaTeX by the mean of the TikZ package. As prerequisites, we invite you to check the following posts:

1. How to design a cover page in LaTeX

Cover page, also commonly referred to as title page, can be found in a wide range of written works such as: professional reports, books and thesis. Designing a cover page in LaTeX can be summarized in the following steps: 

1

Step 1 - What information your cover page has to have

Essentially, a cover page provides information about:

  • ​Document Title/Subtitle
  • Author’s Name
  • Company, Publisher or University Logo
  • Completion/Submission Date, etc

But this mainly depends on the written work.

2

Step 2 -  Get inspired

The second step is to have an idea about how your cover page should looks like. To get inspired, we recommend to make a google search about existing cover pages. A quick google search yields: 

39 Amazing Cover Page Templates (Word + PSD)

Cover Design Inspiration

Google Images
Once you have an idea about your cover page style, try to simplify it to basic shapes (rectangles, circles, etc) with a predefined sizes and absolute positionning on the page. 

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Step 3 - Use TikZ to create your cover page

TikZ is a powerful package when it comes to drawing illustrations in LaTeX. However, a prior knowledge is manadatory to create your cover page. In this post, we will provide a step-by-step tutorial about how to recreate a cover page in LaTeX using TikZ.

In addition, if you would like to recreate a cover page, use the contact page and we will be happy to consider it and include it at the bottom of this tutorial as a gallery of cover pages. 

2. How to easily design a cover page in LaTeX

In this post, we consider a modified version of the cover page: Modern book cover page brochure design

Let's make it simple by reducing it to small tasks. From the illustration, we have the following elements: 

  • shaded rectangles with rounded corners;
  • A small line with right and left text nodes (Annual report and 2020)
  • A text node that corresponds to the title of the report
  • A text node with multiple lines for Author name, company name and address.
  • Light gray background.
Cover page Latex Tikz

3. How to change the background color of a cover page in LaTeX

Changing the background color of a cover page can be done easily in two steps: 

  1. Draw a rectangle that fills the whole page; 
  2. Fill the rectangle with any color. 

A rectangle is drawn by the mean of coordinates of two opposite corners. 

Here is a snippest of the latex code that do this job: 

background color cover page latex tikz

Background color of a cover page.

\documentclass{article}
\usepackage{tikz}

\begin{document}

\pagestyle{empty}

\begin{tikzpicture}[overlay,remember picture]

\fill[cyan!5] (current page.south west) rectangle (current page.north east);

\end{tikzpicture}

\end{document}

In the above example, we used fill command with cyan!5 option which means a mixture of 5% cyan and 95% white color. 

It should be noted that we used options overlay and remember picture with tikzpicture environment as we are working on the background of the page. Please check this post for more details: How to create a Lined Paper Background in LaTeX using TikZ

4. Draw a shaded rectangle with rounded corners

To draw a shaded rectangle, we use the command \shade instead of \fill command. It has the options: left color, middle color, right color and shading angle. Check this post for more details: TikZ shading: Captain America’s Shield

To get rounded corners, we add the option \verb|rounded corners| to the \verb|\shade| command as shown by the next illustration. Choosing rounded corners value equal to the half height of the rectangle yields to a circular sides and that's what we are looking for 😊.

shaded rectangle with rounded corners latex

5. Rotation around a point in TikZ

Rotating a path around a given point can be done through the option: \verb|rotate around={angle:(point)}|. Next figure shows the case of rotating a staright line (black line) around the origin (0,0) and we get the result drawn by the orange color. The gray lines coorespond to 360 degrees rotation of the black line (with 5 degrees step) around its left starting point.

Where we need this?

The basic idea is to draw rectangles with rounded corners and rotate them around their left corner with 45 degrees to get a result similar to the cover page illustration. This allows us to not modify the position of the rectangle after rotation.

rotation around a point in TikZ

6. A journey of a cover design begins with a single rectangle

Let's start by drawing the first rectangle located at the top left corner of the page. The rectangle has the following properties: 

  • Dimensions: 9cm x 1.5cm
  • Shading: left color is \verb|Danedelion| and the right color is lighter: \verb|Danedelion!40|
  • Absolute position: The rectangle bottom left corner is positioned at 6cm to the bottom from the point with coordinates (current page.top west). To achieve this, we need to use calc library for coordinates calculation. 

Here is the line code that generates a rectangle with the above properties: 

\shade[
left color=Dandelion,
right color=Dandelion!40]
($(current page.north west)+(0,-6)$) rectangle ++(9,1.5);

and to rotate it with respect to its bottom left corner, we add a rotate option to the shading command as follows:

\shade[
left color=Dandelion,
right color=Dandelion!40,
transform canvas ={rotate around ={45:($(current page.north west)+(0,-6)$)}}]
($(current page.north west)+(0,-6)$) rectangle ++(9,1.5);
Cover page latex tikz

Let's move to the next light gray rectangle which has the following specifications:

  • Dimensions: 15cm x 1.5cm
  • Rounded corners: to get a circlar shape, rounded corners value is chosen equal to the half value of the rectangle height (0.75cm).
  • Shading: left color is \verb|lightgray| and the right color is lighter: \verb|white| . It should be noted that the right color by default is white. 
  • Absolute position: The rectangle bottom left corner is positioned at 10cm to the bottom from the point with coordinates (current page.top west) and 0.5cm to the right. 
  • Rotation: The rectangle is rotated by 45 degrees.
Cover page latex tikz Gray

In addition, we need to add another small rectangle inside the above one. 

LaTeX code of all rectangles

7. TikZ Multiple line text

The next step is to add details to the cover page (title page, author name, etc). This can be achived using a \node command with multiple lines.

\node[align=center] at (coordinate) 
{
Text 1 \\[1cm]
Text 2 \\[3pt]
Text 3};
  • To justify text, we add align option to the \node command, with values: left, right or center
  • To break a line at a given place, we add \\ and to change the spacing between succesive lines we use \\[valueOftheSpacing].  

The following code represents the details added to the cover page below the center of the page. 

\node[align=center] at ($(current page.center)+(0,-5)$) 
{
{\fontsize{60}{72} \selectfont {{Title of the Report}}} \\[1cm]
{\fontsize{16}{19.2} \selectfont \textcolor{orange}{ \bf Author Name}}\\[3pt]
Company Name\\[3pt]
Address};

And the next code shows how to draw a vertical line with two nodes (left and right with a specific distance). The font size is modified using \fontsize command and for more details, check this post.

\draw[ultra thick,gray]
($(current page.center)+(5,2)$) -- ++(0,-3cm) 
node[
midway,left=0.25cm,align=right,black!75, text width=5cm
]
{{\fontsize{25}{30} \selectfont \bf ANNUAL \\[10pt] REPORT}} 
node[midway,right=0.25cm,align=left,orange]
{{\fontsize{72}{86.4} \selectfont 2020}};

We have reached the end of the tutorial, if you have any questions or suggestions use the comment section below. 

Cover page Latex Tikz

Important! I would like to create a gallery about cover pages, so if you have any images or files that you would like to convert them to LaTeX, contact me and I will include them at the bottom of this tutorial. All the best!

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