Welcome to the AbsoluteWrite Water Cooler! Please read The Newbie Guide To Absolute Write

Results 1 to 18 of 18

Thread: Looking for advice to get to a consistant series concept

  1. #1
    practical experience, FTW kelloish's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    Canada
    Posts
    100

    Looking for advice to get to a consistant series concept

    I've been playing around with these covers for so long that I could really use some outside input at this point. While the images are mainly the same through both versions, I have a lot of different ideas going on in terms of text, so please ignore the titles and inconsistencies as both versions are obviously at a different point in the process, but I'd love your input on these. Feel free to mix and match if you think there are pieces I could put together to make this all work.



    This second set has the proper series order, in case it ends up being important to the concept for any of you.



    I should mention that these are targeted at upper YA readers, and are obviously an Alice retelling.

    Thanks so much, I really appreciate it.
    Last edited by kelloish; 11-14-2012 at 07:29 PM.

  2. #2
    VPXV 4EVA LBlankenship's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    Near Washington, DC
    Posts
    851
    ... I'm not seeing much of any relationship between the covers, to be honest. Looking at the second set, there's a general oddness shared between the first two, but then the second two look more like romance covers. They all have different palettes, focuses, and of course the title fonts are all different.

    I guess my first question would be: what did you want the four covers to have in common?

    Available at all major e-retailers H&R published by Dreamspinner Press

    Writing blog: Notes from the Jovian frontier Twitter: LBlankenship_sf
    Creative Services for self-publishers: covers, ebook formatting, and more

  3. #3
    The Crazy Man in the Sun. Feel me. WillSauger's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Las Vegas, Nevada
    Posts
    5,043
    I see the similarity, but the overall theme is disjointed. I could pick up each book and not know it was from the same author by the cover page.
    Don't Fear Failure.

    "The illiterate of the 21st century will not be those who cannot read and write, but those who cannot learn, unlearn, and relearn" -- Alvin Toffler.

    "The heights of great men reached and kept were not attained by sudden flight, but they while their companions slept, were toiling upward in the night" -- Henry Wadsworth Longfellow.

  4. #4
    practical experience, FTW SBibb's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Posts
    1,355
    Personally I feel that all but the White Rabbit one match (the garden theme), though LBlakenship has a point about the odd relationship. The faded sort of look matches, but I agree, that the color pallette and theme appears to vary. I do like the second group better than the first set, though.

    When matching things, consider placement of objects (within the image, title, size, etc), consider colors, text, etc.
    "1000 Words" A Collection Of Short Stories
    "Ashes" Short Story - YA Sci-Fi Romance

    Current Works:

    Distant Horizon - Book 1 (YA/NA Science Fiction): Querying
    Distant Horizon - Book 2: Editing
    Distant Horizon - Book 3: Rough Draft In Progress
    Glitch - On Hold (NA SF)
    Messenger of Gaia - (Adult/NA SF) Editing

    Looking for cover illustration?
    http://sbibb.deviantart.com

  5. #5
    Mushroom Polenth's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    England
    Posts
    4,409
    The pictures don't all match, and they're generally quite complex, making it hard to put text on them. You might find it helps to make a frame, so the picture only covers part of the cover. That would also give you some series branding space. Right now, I get the Wonderland vibe, but that's all I'm getting. How does the retelling stand out from the original?

    An example of what I mean by a frame:
    http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/7973.Enchantment
    * Polenth *

    Website | Blog | Twitter | Goodreads
    Sunstruck - Bigfoot Urban Fantasy Novel

  6. #6
    practical experience, FTW kelloish's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    Canada
    Posts
    100
    Thank you all for your input so far!

    Alright, here is the next batch. I tried to overlay a picture of the garden from the same photo shoot behind the white rabbit, and might be able to take it a bit farther but I'm hardly a photoshop expert and don't want to end up with a cut out of the girl over the garden.

    My next step is probably to change all of the text to the one from the last image here. I liked the chaotic look of having them all be a little different, but the last is the easiest to read, so I should go with that.

    As for how this retelling differs. Each story is told from the perspective of one of the characters and it doesn't be following the original Wonderland stories (using both) too closely in terms of plot. There is also some jumping back and forth to reality, involving just starting out at University.



    Edit: Alright, perhaps I'm a little obsessive. Made some changes to the text. The only thing that's bothering me is the text placement, and there's really not much I can do about that while working within these images.

    Last edited by kelloish; 11-15-2012 at 06:00 AM.

  7. #7
    VPXV 4EVA LBlankenship's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    Near Washington, DC
    Posts
    851
    Adding the garden behind the bunny girl helps, and so does the consistent fonts.

    Some suggestions, though this may need real Photoshopping:
    - Can you adjust the saturation in the Rose Red cover to match the other three a little better? The black in particular looks washed out, to me.
    - You've got a clear spade on the bunny girl. You could argue there's a diamond over the mad hatter's eye. That would leave clubs and hearts for the other two covers... if you could work them in somewhere. If playing cards figure prominently in your story?

    Available at all major e-retailers H&R published by Dreamspinner Press

    Writing blog: Notes from the Jovian frontier Twitter: LBlankenship_sf
    Creative Services for self-publishers: covers, ebook formatting, and more

  8. #8
    Banned
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Location
    USA... sometimes.
    Posts
    1,514
    In the last post second set is a lot better, however, the placing of the red rose cover text bugs me. (Splits the plane in half)

    It is an improvement, however.

  9. #9
    practical experience, FTW SBibb's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Posts
    1,355
    How about, for Painting the Red Rose (these are getting better, by the way), that you align the text so it follows the white space of the dress. Therefore it doesn't split the plane in half, and adds a bit of emphasis to the cover.

    I do like the adding of the garden behind the white rabbit, they're looking a bit more consistent (and more professional) now. :-)
    "1000 Words" A Collection Of Short Stories
    "Ashes" Short Story - YA Sci-Fi Romance

    Current Works:

    Distant Horizon - Book 1 (YA/NA Science Fiction): Querying
    Distant Horizon - Book 2: Editing
    Distant Horizon - Book 3: Rough Draft In Progress
    Glitch - On Hold (NA SF)
    Messenger of Gaia - (Adult/NA SF) Editing

    Looking for cover illustration?
    http://sbibb.deviantart.com

  10. #10
    practical experience, FTW kelloish's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    Canada
    Posts
    100
    Next round of edits I did sort of the same thing with the White Queen image as I did with the White Rabbit and put a bit of the higher saturation garden behind her, plus upped the saturation on the original image as well.

    Also, cleaned up and moved the text around. It bothers me a little bit that all but one have the image in essentially the same place but I'm still really happy with these.


  11. #11
    practical experience, FTW SBibb's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Posts
    1,355
    Overall, there's some definite improvement. Personally, I'd still play with the text placement of Painting the Rose Red (you might at least toy with having the text cascading along the dress)


    For Example:
    Having this pattern roughly in the white part of the dress. It might not look right, but you'd just have to experiment with it.

    --------Painting
    -----the
    ----Rose
    ------Red

    However, keeping that same format for the title (as you have it) would create a fairly similar, consistent feel, with the covers, except for White Rabbit (which would still be similar, just slightly different).

    Overall, I like them. :-)
    "1000 Words" A Collection Of Short Stories
    "Ashes" Short Story - YA Sci-Fi Romance

    Current Works:

    Distant Horizon - Book 1 (YA/NA Science Fiction): Querying
    Distant Horizon - Book 2: Editing
    Distant Horizon - Book 3: Rough Draft In Progress
    Glitch - On Hold (NA SF)
    Messenger of Gaia - (Adult/NA SF) Editing

    Looking for cover illustration?
    http://sbibb.deviantart.com

  12. #12
    Mushroom Polenth's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    England
    Posts
    4,409
    I think they'd look better if the title text was on the same alignment for each one (excluding the rabbit hole... but future books with a top title would be aligned with that). They're just slightly off, and it looks odd when they're placed next to each other.
    * Polenth *

    Website | Blog | Twitter | Goodreads
    Sunstruck - Bigfoot Urban Fantasy Novel

  13. #13
    practical experience, FTW Tezzirax's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    Southern California
    Posts
    374
    My two cents

    The composition of the photo and values of the first one just drop it out of the mix for me. I like it individually, of them all I think it is one of the strongest because of the composition and the symbolism--but also of them all it doesn't fit.

    The second and fourth have the most connection with each other. The third does not read right off as a wonderland character, I am guessing it is the white queen, but only guessing.

    I am going to shoot down the gradient on the title font as well and steer you toward looking at it either all red or all white and see how that feels to you.
    My Blog: Thomas Cardin
    My books, The Final Warden, City of Thunder, Lord of Vengeance

    WIP: The Fire of Falraan

  14. #14
    practical experience, FTW SBibb's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Posts
    1,355
    I agree with what most of Tezzirax mentioned, and I encourage you to experiment with the fonts, but I actually think the gradient adds interest. That could be a personal preference, though.
    "1000 Words" A Collection Of Short Stories
    "Ashes" Short Story - YA Sci-Fi Romance

    Current Works:

    Distant Horizon - Book 1 (YA/NA Science Fiction): Querying
    Distant Horizon - Book 2: Editing
    Distant Horizon - Book 3: Rough Draft In Progress
    Glitch - On Hold (NA SF)
    Messenger of Gaia - (Adult/NA SF) Editing

    Looking for cover illustration?
    http://sbibb.deviantart.com

  15. #15
    volitare nequeo AW Moderator veinglory's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    right here
    Posts
    26,863
    Overall they look fine but I agree that matching the contrast and saturation fo the pictures is key to making them look like a series. And it can be done by eye even with a very basic picture editor.

  16. #16
    practical experience, FTW kelloish's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    Canada
    Posts
    100
    Thanks everyone for all your input. I'm going to set them aside for a bit, as all of my cover-editing has been super distracting me from actually writing, but overall I'm really excited about where these are headed.

  17. #17
    Benefactor Member WeaselFire's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Floral City, FL
    Posts
    2,172
    Pick a single title and author font style and location.

    Jeff

  18. #18
    Banned
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    New Jersey
    Posts
    225
    Quote Originally Posted by WeaselFire View Post
    Pick a single title and author font style and location.

    Jeff
    Ding. This was my thought as well. A couple of your fonts - at least here in the forums - were outright difficult to read let alone legible as a thumbnail in an ebook store, or on a shelf in a B&M.

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
Custom Search