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Quiggs1982
12-22-2011, 11:58 AM
I'm taking the plunge and attempting to create a cover for a book I plan to self publish next year. I'm a newbie at photo manipulation and using Gimp, so I don't really know what I am doing.

I took a few pictures from Fotolia to see if I could pull something off. (Excuse the watermarks. I am just trying this out and don't want to buy the photos until I know for sure which ones I want.)

The story is paranormal romance - my take on vampires. It takes place in Chicago, hence the skyline on the one cover.

Do either of these covers look any good? Which one is better and what should be changed?

Version 1
http://www.flickr.com/photos/44553377@N06/6553013645/

Version 2
http://www.flickr.com/photos/44553377@N06/6553013557/

merrihiatt
12-22-2011, 12:04 PM
The book title stands out more on the second one and I like the way the city looks. Don't care for the image of the couple at the top.

I like the moon in the first one, the couple look a bit... plastic (not sure that's the right word).

In both, it's very hard to read the author's name. You want people to see your name, and remember it so they will purchase more of your books!

Quiggs1982
12-23-2011, 02:50 AM
Good point. The people look terrible. I haven't quite figured out how to cut people out of pictures without making them look odd. I also didn't realize my name wasn't easily seen.

What about combining the two ideas?

Are either one of these better?

http://www.flickr.com/photos/44553377@N06/6556267373/

http://www.flickr.com/photos/44553377@N06/6556267397/

merrihiatt
12-23-2011, 08:23 AM
I really like the second one. The first one is clear and well-balanced, but seems a bit plain (if that makes sense). Is it possible to put your name below your book title, placing both with the black behind. Your name is getting lost in the water highlights. If that doesn't work, maybe putting a black background across the bottom with your name inside it. Just so your name stands out more.

If it was a sub-heading for your book or something, it wouldn't be a deal breaker, but this is your name and you want people to see it clearly.

merrihiatt
12-23-2011, 08:40 AM
http://i213.photobucket.com/albums/cc281/john1verse5/nocturnepossiblecovers.jpg

I took a screen shot of the second cover and then played around for a few minutes (very few minutes), with a few ideas. I'm not in love with any of them, but it explains more about what I was trying to say in my previous post.

I put your name in a light blue with a black background on the first pic.
The second pic, I moved your name up under your title.
The third pic, I moved your name down below and made it bold and larger.

ETA: If you'd rather not have these photos here, please let me know and I'll delete them. I wasn't trying to step over any boundaries.

escritora
12-23-2011, 08:48 AM
FWIW, I like merrihiatt's option #1 best --- with your name, in white on a black strip.

Quiggs1982
12-23-2011, 09:07 AM
Thank you so much. No, I don't mind you putting the pictures here. I couldn't figure out how to get them to show.

I like your option 1 as well. My name does stand out much better. I was worried that too much black would make it look odd, but it actually looks ok.

I definitely like the layout of the skyline on the bottom since Chicago is so important to the story. I also like the couple on top. They look intense, which is what I am going for. Though I am playing around with the thought of leaving them normal looking instead of doing the blue tint.

It's just the details I need to figure out, but I really like the black strips for the title and my name. Now I need to learn how to cut the people out better so they don't look so plastic and fake.

merrihiatt
12-23-2011, 10:11 AM
I love playing around with book covers. Glad I could help. Oh, and the way you make your cover show up in a post is to snag the direct link code from your photo host, then click on the little picture icon (between the hyperlink icon and the quote icon in the quick reply box) and then insert the direct link code. You won't see the photo until you post your reply. Then it will show up.

Dani
12-23-2011, 02:11 PM
Nice work Merri. I agree the first cover is the best of Merri's. Everything stands out. Personally I like the couple.