Cover Art

  1. AnyaKimlin

    AnyaKimlin Confuddled

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    I paid for an image from Shutterstock and paid for a designer to use it. In total it was about £70. I got the opportunity to get feedback from a fairly well known cover artist and aside from he wanted me to lose the drop shadows and add more fantasy he liked it. (other far more expensive covers were ripped apart so I'm happy with it). This is what I got:

    [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
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  2. Gary Compton

    Gary Compton I miss you, wor kid.

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    I can certainly add fog but Chris never asked for any. :)
     
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  3. tinkerdan

    tinkerdan candycane shrimp

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    Most picture's I have seen, don't have fog.
    It was just a perception thing.

    you might try switching where the title and author name are.
    [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jan 7, 2017
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  4. Gary Compton

    Gary Compton I miss you, wor kid.

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    It's a dystopian novel so not yet destroyed streets but empty. I dont like the way you've stretched the photo (maybe I'm seeing that as only a thumbnail) as the face of Big Ben is now out of shape plus you seem to have added a bauble from the Xmas tree or is it meant to be the moon?

    But it's all subjective, right! :)
     
    Last edited: Jan 7, 2017
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  5. tinkerdan

    tinkerdan candycane shrimp

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    Didn't mean to distract you so much. Mostly meant to show the shuffle of the name and title.
     
  6. Gary Compton

    Gary Compton I miss you, wor kid.

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    I've added some fog Chris, lat me know if enough or if you prefer other one. I can pea-soup it if you want.

    Cover-Chris-Milne2.jpg
     
  7. Cathbad

    Cathbad Male with Ugly (white) Beard

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    I like this one a lot!
     
  8. Gary Compton

    Gary Compton I miss you, wor kid.

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    No worries TD. I can assure you that I go through this and more with authors. I'll not mention @Teresa Edgerton and @Jo Zebedee :) LOL
     
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  9. Gary Compton

    Gary Compton I miss you, wor kid.

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    Or stronger.

    Cover-Chris-Milne3.jpg
     
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  10. Gary Compton

    Gary Compton I miss you, wor kid.

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    Wipe out.

    Cover-Chris-Milne4.jpg
     
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  11. tinkerdan

    tinkerdan candycane shrimp

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    [​IMG]
    the non-christmas edition
     
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  12. Mr Orange

    Mr Orange Rhubarb rhubarb rhubarb...

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    So many covers.... I'm going giddy...

    Or that may be the fact it's 4am and I am up dealing with the baby.

    I don't honestly know which title/author layout i like better. I do like the fog too but not sure it goes the story. Probably just leave it as is for now and when I get the actual story ready for publication I'll revisit it! And pay you for your time regarding any changes Gary!
     
  13. AnyaKimlin

    AnyaKimlin Confuddled

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    I like this one best.
     
  14. Tim Murray

    Tim Murray Through space, time and dimension

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    I commissioned a local artist to do mine. After he read the book, we worked the artwork out. It is specific to the book itself, much better than the the first choice.
     
  15. JE Loddon

    JE Loddon Member

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    I get my images from iStock, and then play around with them to get what I want. They're not expensive. I know several people who get stuff via Deviant Art, but I don't know how that works with regards to royalties etc...
     
  16. Heijan Xavier

    Heijan Xavier Embarking on my second year of Chronning!!!

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  17. Amelia Faulkner

    Amelia Faulkner Well-Known Member

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    There's a reason for this (other than drop shadows being straight outta 1990). Drop shadows are usually a quick and dirty fix for poor composition. Your cover has no poor composition, so doesn't need the fix :D

    You can pay anywhere between $5 on fiverr to upwards of $1,000 for a cover designer. I would say you don't really need to go any further than the $150-$250 range inclusive of full print wraparound. Be aware that a lot of fiverr sellers have stolen covers off Amazon or off other fiverr sellers to put in their portfolio, then when you order from them what you get is total dross. Check their reviews to make sure customers are genuinely happy if you really want to go the fiverr route (which I advise against, because fiverr take 20% of all transactions. Pay an artist directly wherever possible).

    A good designer will have access to premium stock photography or images which will beyond the budget of the one-off designer or author-artist, because they'll have subscriptions to sites like Adobe Stock or Getty Images so can get hold of images which might otherwise cost upward of $200 on their own.

    A good designer will also have access to premium fonts, rather than whatever FontSquirrel lists as free and having a commercial license. Premium fonts usually have better features (alternates, properly calculated kerning, and so on) which free fonts lack, but also because they cost money they'll be less commonplace and provide you with better branding.

    Just remember that, as much as we as authors hate facing this fact, covers do sell books. If you slap a bit of MS Paint art on your book, it flat-out will not sell.

    There's also a line to be drawn underneath quality. You can be crazy as all get-out if you want, but still provide quality. For instance, the great and wonderful Chuck Tingle:

    [​IMG]

    Yes, silly subjects, but the photoshop work is actually very skilled, and the design and branding are crisp and clear. And not a drop shadow in sight :D
     
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  18. Stephen Palmer

    Stephen Palmer author of novels

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    There's nothing wrong with drop shadows if they're subtle. The problem is, they rarely are.
     
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  19. AnyaKimlin

    AnyaKimlin Confuddled

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    I wanted something straight outta 1990 ;) It has similarities with a certain iconic TV show.... I'm going for a certain market... basically that market all growed up.

    I deliberately chose a cover designer who was in the same age range as my main character and part of my target market. My MC is 68 and whilst I have no problems finding teens to read the book it is aimed at an older age group. When I am drawn to a book cover it nearly always has elements of what was around and trendy when I was a teenager. It's not often modern covers grab me as much.

    As you say covers sell books and I wouldn't be drawn to the ones in your selection. Mine didn't particularly draw me at first because I wanted something more like Mr Holmes's DVD cover. But when I showed it round the book groups and writers group (mostly made up of very honest over 45s) it went down really, really well. So I learned to love it.
     
    Last edited: May 20, 2017
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  20. Amelia Faulkner

    Amelia Faulkner Well-Known Member

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    Just to clarify, the Chuck Tingle example is not to say "everyone should have naked manchest and dinosaurs on their covers" :D
     
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