Behind the Scenes – Blood Loss

A cover for Melange Books. For this cover, we wanted to have the dark color scheme while keeping the cover light enough that the colors wouldn’t go to black in the print version. So I created the basic scene first, then played with multiple color options once those basics were in place. For the castle’s glow, I masked out all the windows, then tinkered with the lighting on layers below the castle layer. Once I had the light source, I added ‘soft light’ and ‘overlay’ layers over the castle layer. I typically use dark blue/purple for shadows, and yellow for highlights.

The proof version was fairly blurry, due to using comp images. Comp images are handy when you’re trying to see if the idea will work or not. When I created the near-final, I smoothed out the blending and adjusted how strong the gaussian blur was on the background layers, thus making it considerably sharper. Once you have the full-sized stock images, it becomes much easier to smooth out edges and see how sharp it will really go.

For the back cover, I stepped back several layers, removed the man and castle, adjusted my retouch layers, then flipped the merged image horizontally. This is the result:

SBibb - Blood Loss - Book Cover

SBibb - Blood Loss -  Back of Book Cover

Stock images from Dreamstime:

http://www.dreamstime.com/royalty-free-stock-photo-jagged-rocks-edge-cliff-desert-image29674305

http://www.dreamstime.com/stock-photo-edge-cliff-turquoise-ocean-image47133437

http://www.dreamstime.com/stock-image-morning-fog-mountains-image22074991

http://www.dreamstime.com/stock-photography-fog-lake-image37546892

http://www.dreamstime.com/stock-photo-ruins-tintern-abbey-former-cistercian-church-th-wales-banks-river-wye-close-to-english-border-image44804119

http://www.dreamstime.com/stock-photo-beautiful-dark-woman-black-robe-sword-fantasy-legend-image48884659

http://www.dreamstime.com/royalty-free-stock-image-smoke-background-image27490166

http://www.dreamstime.com/stock-photos-floating-smoke-black-background-image36147493

http://www.dreamstime.com/royalty-free-stock-photos-hooded-man-image9241498

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2 Comments

Filed under Book Covers, Client Work, Photo Illustration

2 responses to “Behind the Scenes – Blood Loss

  1. The man reminds me of David Boreanaz from Buffy/Angel and Bones. I had to check the source to make sure it wasn’t.

    • I haven’t watched Buffy or Bones, so I’m not familiar with their actors. This particular person was a model from a stock image on Dreamstime. It would be interesting if an actor decided to do some stock modeling, though. 🙂

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