Tag Archives: cover design

Behind the Scenes – Lesson Plan For Murder

A cover for Barking Rain Press. For this cover, since the mystery involves the murder of a school teacher, the publisher was looking for something that would convey the theme (as cozy mysteries often do). So we chose to have the chalkboard background with a chalk-like font for the title, along with books and pencils on the desk, which would create the sense of a school setting. We also included hints of the murder weapon by having the concealed pills and the spilled coffee… obviously drank from due to the lipstick stain.

This is the final result:

SBibb -Lesson Plan For Murder

SBibb -Lesson Plan For Murder

Stock images from Shutterstock:

https://www.shutterstock.com/image-photo/stack-old-books-isolated-on-white-110298509 – books
https://www.shutterstock.com/image-photo/cup-pens-pencils-isolated-74529190 – pencil cup
https://www.shutterstock.com/image-photo/cup-coffee-spilled-on-computer-keyboard-76303951 – coffee cup
https://www.shutterstock.com/image-photo/wooden-table-on-blank-green-board-208701988 – blackboard and table
https://www.shutterstock.com/image-vector/lip-stain-vector-241323901 – lipstick stain
https://www.shutterstock.com/image-photo/pill-bottle-concept-healthcare-medicine-97588814 – pill bottle

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Behind the Scenes – Hunter of Mysteries

A cover for Melange Books. For this cover, we wanted the cover to resemble the other books in the series, Night of the HunterDemon Hunter, and Hunter in the Darkness. Ultimately, I played with having a brighter background lighting (the sunset) in this one compared to the storm-based backgrounds of the previous colors.  We kept the lighting on the model fairly consistent with the others. Also, I had to change the position of the ruins to have it better fit the positioning of the model. Per usual, the character is a composite image in order to create a more accurate rendition.

This is the result:

Hunter of Mysteries - Book Cover

Hunter of Mysteries - Back of Book Cover

Stock images from DepositPhotos:
https://www.dreamstime.com/stock-photo-abstract-smoke-moves-black-background-image48826804 – fog

https://www.dreamstime.com/royalty-free-stock-photos-dark-ominous-rain-clouds-lightning-image18357018 – lightning sky

http://depositphotos.com/50429945/stock-photo-beautiful-fiery-orange-and-purple.html – sunset sky

https://www.dreamstime.com/stock-photos-capital-fortress-kingdom-urartu-van-turkey-image22014223 – castle ruins

http://depositphotos.com/19531251/stock-photo-handsome-man-pointing-with-gun.html – man body

http://depositphotos.com/39716297/stock-photo-knight-and-princess-love-each.html – head

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Behind the Scenes – Song of the Sword

This is a cover for Melange Books. For this cover we wanted to keep with the theme of the previous books: Dragon SwordSword of DoomSword of the Quest, and Star Sword. Again, I piece-parted images of the model to get the dramatic pose we wanted, and per usual, I added specific lighting to the background and foreground using overlay and softlight blending layers, in order to make the image look cohesive. Adding a bit of “fog” at the base of the image allowed the title to stand out better while blending out the legs of the model where the stock image was cut away.

SBibb - Song of the Sword - Book Cover

Stock images from The Dollar Photo Club (Site no longer functional):
two images of the model

Stock from Dreamstime:
https://www.dreamstime.com/royalty-free-stock-photos-dark-ominous-rain-clouds-lightning-image18357018 – sky
https://www.dreamstime.com/stock-photo-castle-kreuzenstein-leobendorf-near-vienna-austria-image45372240 – castle
https://www.dreamstime.com/stock-photo-roche-rock-ancient-ruined-chapel-perched-top-rocky-granite-outcrop-known-as-located-mid-cornwall-dedicated-to-st-image32326080 – rocks

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Behind the Scenes – Entrance to Dark Harbor

A cover for Melange Books. For this cover, we wanted to keep the same style as the first book, Dusk Runner. I used the same two textures to create the background (though I made sure to do the retouching on the basic layers this time, so that next time will require less retouch work). The author already had an image in mind for the main picture. While it wasn’t from one of our usual stock providers, I used the provided image and their description of the ship to find a similar picture at Dreamstime. I kept the text placement and style the same (though some adjustments had to be made, since the title was longer). We also tried two different font colors, a pale, near-white blue, and then a light blue. We ultimately chose the light blue since the color was still visible and provided the closest match to the previous title.

This is the result:

Behind the Scenes - Entrance to Dark Harbor Book Cover

Behind the Scenes - Entrance to Dark Harbor - Back of Book Cover

Stock images from Dreamstime:

http://www.dreamstime.com/stock-images-brown-leather-texture-image21958744 – leather texture

http://www.dreamstime.com/stock-photos-old-yellow-brown-vintage-parchment-paper-texture-image24082203 – paper texture

https://www.dreamstime.com/stock-image-sailing-ship-image12784651 – ship silhouette

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Behind the Scenes – Sojourn: The Beastlands

A cover for Melange Books. For this cover, we wanted to match the style of the previous books, The Wildlands and The Deadlands. I kept the general placement of the titles and author name the same (though we did experiment with different placements), plus we kept with the general theme of the two characters walking on a path to a different destination. In this case, we used the same model imagery from the second cover, but I did a few adjustments to their images to make them seem a bit different (pushed them closer, adjusted the girl’s hair a bit, and flipped their images). We added a couple pieces of deserted imagery to add to the abandoned feel, and I used a lot of Photoshop masking in layers to get the various jungle layers to mesh properly and look natural.

This is the result:

Behind the Scenes - Sojourn: The Beastlands Book Cover

Behind the Scenes - Sojourn: The Beastlands Back of Book Cover
Stock images from Dreamstime:

http://www.dreamstime.com/stock-photo-jungle-green-thickets-mountains-malaysia-image56303604 – jungle
https://www.dreamstime.com/stock-images-abandoned-road-image16324304 – road
http://www.dreamstime.com/stock-photo-tropical-rainforest-khao-yai-national-park-thailand-world-h-image68662437 – jungle overlook
https://www.dreamstime.com/stock-photo-abandoned-diner-photo-taken-off-interstate-i-usa-image56088809 – abandoned diner
https://www.dreamstime.com/royalty-free-stock-photography-abandoned-car-image23149927 -abandoned car
People – From the Dollar Photo Club

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Behind the Scenes – Night of the Hunter

A cover for Melange Books. For this cover we wanted a dark, sinister tone, and the author asked for the demon-like creatures to be staring out of the darkness. To achieve the appearance of the demon, I used a base image to start with, then used various layers in Photoshop to apply the red glow, which I then smudged and liquefied to match the model’s facial features.

Since the author said the main character is supposed to be a reincarnation of the main character from his other books, I used the same model, but with a different hairstyle.

This is the result:

Book Cover - Night of the Hunter

Back of Book Cover - Night of the Hunter

Stock images from Dreamstime:

http://www.dreamstime.com/stock-photo-young-vampire-man-shirtless-gesturing-to-camera-portrait-showing-his-torso-chest-abs-looking-dark-background-image60136451 – demon

http://www.dreamstime.com/stock-photo-abstract-fog-smoke-background-image69643118 – fog

http://www.dreamstime.com/stock-photo-dangerous-man-gun-sunglasses-standing-abandoned-house-image65411957 – black shirt

http://www.dreamstime.com/stock-photo-businessman-gun-white-image47821012 – aimed gun

Head image from Dollar Photo Club

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Behind the Scenes – Shadow Notes

This is a cover for Barking Rain Press. For this cover, the publisher wanted to stick with the blue and white color scheme, which plays a major role in the story. The author provided a few example covers of books with similar tones, which I used to get an idea of the design style: the style of scenery, the font and title placement, and the general mood of the cover.

This is the result:

Book Cover - Shadow Notes

Wraparound Book Cover - Shadow Notes

Stock images from Shutterstock:

http://www.shutterstock.com/pic-351762476/stock-photo-lonely-woman-walking-in-the-park-with-trees-at-snowy-day-snowfall-in-park-with-lonely-walking.html

http://www.shutterstock.com/pic-27596422/stock-photo-woman-with-psychic-pressure-in-a-corridor.html

http://www.shutterstock.com/pic-44825947/stock-photo-walk-in-winter.html

http://www.shutterstock.com/pic-156469889/stock-photo-frozen-land-in-winter-time.html

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