Register Guidelines E-Books Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read

Go Back   MobileRead Forums > E-Book General > Writers' Corner

Notices

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 05-03-2011, 05:23 AM   #1
amoroso
Groupie
amoroso ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.amoroso ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.amoroso ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.amoroso ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.amoroso ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.amoroso ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.amoroso ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.amoroso ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.amoroso ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.amoroso ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.amoroso ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
amoroso's Avatar
 
Posts: 181
Karma: 1004070
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Italy
Device: Cybook Opus, Kindle
Practical cover design resources

Indie authors are universally advised to hire someone for cover design instead of doing it themselves. It's as if everything about self publiching can be learned, but not cover design: book design, writing, editing, formatting, marketing, web design, SEO. But not cover design. Even rocket science looks less intimidating and arcane.

Assume someone dares to think of learning something about cover design. Not for actually designing covers, mind you, but mere intellectual curiosity. Are there useful practical resources on book design? Any ebooks, sites or blogs?

I am primarily interested in resources on design, layout and composition rather than image and page editing. By practical I mean that they should provide examples and tips, or be directly applicable for actually producing covers.
amoroso is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-03-2011, 06:19 AM   #2
mr ploppy
Feral Underclass
mr ploppy ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.mr ploppy ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.mr ploppy ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.mr ploppy ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.mr ploppy ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.mr ploppy ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.mr ploppy ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.mr ploppy ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.mr ploppy ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.mr ploppy ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.mr ploppy ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
mr ploppy's Avatar
 
Posts: 3,527
Karma: 26546435
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Yorkshire, tha noz
Device: 2nd hand paperback
Get a book on graphic design basics from your library, or look for a similar tutorial site. I doubt there's anything specific to book covers, but the general principles are the same whatever you design.

For ebooks, the main thing to remember is they need to work at postage stamp size as well as full size:



So use a simple image and large text with a lot of contrast. If you use Windows, you can check for small size clarity by looking at it in thumbnail directory display.
mr ploppy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-03-2011, 07:18 AM   #3
amoroso
Groupie
amoroso ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.amoroso ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.amoroso ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.amoroso ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.amoroso ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.amoroso ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.amoroso ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.amoroso ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.amoroso ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.amoroso ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.amoroso ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
amoroso's Avatar
 
Posts: 181
Karma: 1004070
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Italy
Device: Cybook Opus, Kindle
Quote:
Originally Posted by mr ploppy View Post
I doubt there's anything specific to book covers, but the general principles are the same whatever you design.
Any takers? I'm willing to preorder

I've actually found an ebook on cover design at Amazon. But it seems to focus on image editing with Photoshop/Gimp, is a bit expensive, and the only review, a 3-star one, doesn't make it sound a compelling reading.
amoroso is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-03-2011, 08:21 AM   #4
queentess
Reading is sexy
queentess ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.queentess ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.queentess ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.queentess ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.queentess ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.queentess ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.queentess ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.queentess ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.queentess ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.queentess ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.queentess ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
queentess's Avatar
 
Posts: 1,304
Karma: 544517
Join Date: Apr 2009
Device: none
Quote:
Originally Posted by amoroso View Post
Indie authors are universally advised to hire someone for cover design instead of doing it themselves. It's as if everything about self publiching can be learned, but not cover design: book design, writing, editing, formatting, marketing, web design, SEO. But not cover design. Even rocket science looks less intimidating and arcane.
I don't think it's something authors can't learn design, but it's something (like editing) that's best performed by someone else. I've seen plenty of author-created covers here on mobileread, and some are good, some are just ok, but the overwhelming majority seem to be horrendous. Having an ability to write doesn't mean you have design aesthetic

Whatever you design, just make sure you ask for feedback. External validation is important with book covers, as it's the first thing people see about your book and you want to leave a good impression.

Last edited by queentess; 05-03-2011 at 08:26 AM.
queentess is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-04-2011, 10:19 PM   #5
apbschmitz
Lord of Frogtown
apbschmitz ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.apbschmitz ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.apbschmitz ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.apbschmitz ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.apbschmitz ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.apbschmitz ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.apbschmitz ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.apbschmitz ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.apbschmitz ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.apbschmitz ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.apbschmitz ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
apbschmitz's Avatar
 
Posts: 149
Karma: 1154748
Join Date: May 2011
Location: St. Paul MN
Device: Kindle
Aesthetics aside, the learning curve for Photoshop is pretty steep. Unless you have some continuing interest in using it, it might be easier to bust rocks in the hot sun at $5 per hour and use the money to pay a designer.
apbschmitz is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-05-2011, 02:05 AM   #6
caleb72
Indie Advocate
caleb72 ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.caleb72 ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.caleb72 ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.caleb72 ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.caleb72 ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.caleb72 ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.caleb72 ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.caleb72 ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.caleb72 ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.caleb72 ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.caleb72 ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
caleb72's Avatar
 
Posts: 2,711
Karma: 14627223
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Device: Kindle
Here's a link to a thread where cover design was being discussed. One of the members in this thread had some interesting advice:

http://www.mobileread.com/forums/sho...68#post1073368

Regards
Caleb
caleb72 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-05-2011, 01:13 PM   #7
Penforhire
Wizard
Penforhire ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Penforhire ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Penforhire ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Penforhire ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Penforhire ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Penforhire ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Penforhire ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Penforhire ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Penforhire ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Penforhire ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Penforhire ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
Posts: 2,104
Karma: 7067396
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Southern California
Device: Kindle PW, PRS-650, iPhone 4, iPad 4
Not only is the learning curve for Adobe Photoshop steep, it is not likely the primary tool for cover creation. I do not know but I imagine Adobe Illustrator is used more often.

There are also page layout programs like Quark Express or Adobe InDesign (taking over from Aldus' Pagemaker) but their learning curves are steep too. I'm do catalog work with Quark and after many revisions it remains a very difficult yet powerful program.

Aside from the tools used, the issue is similar to telling a non-writer, "here's a copy of MS Word now go write a novel." There is a real skill and depth to graphic design.
Penforhire is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-05-2011, 07:00 PM   #8
Todd Young
Addict
Todd Young ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Todd Young ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Todd Young ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Todd Young ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Todd Young ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Todd Young ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Todd Young ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Todd Young ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Todd Young ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Todd Young ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Todd Young ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
Todd Young's Avatar
 
Posts: 249
Karma: 1004164
Join Date: May 2011
Device: Kindle 2
I learnt by using a book on Photoshop. I think it was called "Photoshop for Dummies." However, if you can't afford photoshop, I'd suggest trying GIMP. It's free, but extremely difficult to use.

There are plenty of people on youtube who post self-help videos. I have used these from time to time. They vary in quality.
Todd Young is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-05-2011, 07:05 PM   #9
dwig
Guru
dwig ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.dwig ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.dwig ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.dwig ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.dwig ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.dwig ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.dwig ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.dwig ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.dwig ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.dwig ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.dwig ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
dwig's Avatar
 
Posts: 980
Karma: 1382338
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Paradise (Key West, FL)
Device: Current:Dell Venue 8 Pro, Kindle 3/WiFi - Retired:Clie UX50, T415, ...
Art, at the core level, can't be taught. It is in-born.

Just as no amount of studying the craft of writing and publishing will make you a good story teller, no amount of study in the use of graphic art tools (Illustrator, Photoshop, oil paints, watercolors, ...) will make you an artist.

If you have artistic ability then you can learn to create covers. If not, no amount of study will do more than give you the ability to create well crafted but ineffective and unattractive covers.
dwig is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-06-2011, 09:14 AM   #10
amoroso
Groupie
amoroso ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.amoroso ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.amoroso ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.amoroso ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.amoroso ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.amoroso ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.amoroso ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.amoroso ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.amoroso ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.amoroso ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.amoroso ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
amoroso's Avatar
 
Posts: 181
Karma: 1004070
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Italy
Device: Cybook Opus, Kindle
Quote:
Originally Posted by dwig View Post
Art, at the core level, can't be taught. It is in-born.
It might be possible to teach how to become a passable amateur, or at least how to avoid the most common mistakes.
amoroso is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-12-2011, 09:26 AM   #11
melaniejaxn
Enthusiast
melaniejaxn knows the difference between 'who' and 'whom'melaniejaxn knows the difference between 'who' and 'whom'melaniejaxn knows the difference between 'who' and 'whom'melaniejaxn knows the difference between 'who' and 'whom'melaniejaxn knows the difference between 'who' and 'whom'melaniejaxn knows the difference between 'who' and 'whom'melaniejaxn knows the difference between 'who' and 'whom'melaniejaxn knows the difference between 'who' and 'whom'melaniejaxn knows the difference between 'who' and 'whom'melaniejaxn knows the difference between 'who' and 'whom'melaniejaxn knows the difference between 'who' and 'whom'
 
melaniejaxn's Avatar
 
Posts: 48
Karma: 10308
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Sierra foothills of California
Device: Kindle
One of the biggest mistakes I've seen-- usually in authors who are so happy they don't have to have offensive genre covers anymore-- is that they forget that covers are supposed to convey genre. You don't put sausage in a cereal box-- even when it is a pretty cereal box.

Also, and I don't know how you teach this (anymore than how you teach good story telling) a cover needs to catch the eye, then hold the attention long enough to convey what the book is about and hopefully get people to have a deeper look. Many images are worth a first glance but that's it. There needs to be some extra little detail that catches the eye-- a single shoe on a kitchen floor, a dragon tail poking out under the sofa.

Lastly, if the book is part of series, there needs to be a unifying theme. Perhaps the same font on every book. Maybe each book will have a picture of a calico cat or a dictionary. There needs to be a visual that says this book is part of a series. Readers can forget names and forget titles. Usually visuals stay with them.
melaniejaxn is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-13-2011, 08:22 AM   #12
VydorScope
Wizard
VydorScope ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.VydorScope ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.VydorScope ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.VydorScope ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.VydorScope ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.VydorScope ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.VydorScope ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.VydorScope ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.VydorScope ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.VydorScope ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.VydorScope ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
VydorScope's Avatar
 
Posts: 3,394
Karma: 35207650
Join Date: Jun 2011
Device: Kindle Fire HD 7
IMO, One could use stock photos/artwork and some decent fonts + a basic graphics program to do something nice looking with fairly low skill. Basic layout and color schemes could be taught/learned fairly easy I would think. But I agree its best to get a real artist to help you out.
VydorScope is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-17-2011, 07:47 AM   #13
garygibsonsf
Addict
garygibsonsf ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.garygibsonsf ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.garygibsonsf ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.garygibsonsf ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.garygibsonsf ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.garygibsonsf ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.garygibsonsf ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.garygibsonsf ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.garygibsonsf ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.garygibsonsf ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.garygibsonsf ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
Posts: 319
Karma: 432192
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Glasgow, Scotland
Device: Amazon Kindle Paperwhite
I asked the same questions about ebook design and then found this thread ten seconds later: it looks like there aren't really that many resources out there, which seems weird. Sounds like a niche for a book cover designer with a skill for writing how-to books.
garygibsonsf is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Forum Jump

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Cover for In Design EPUB SteveC100 Sigil 12 04-29-2011 01:09 PM
Design your own M-edge Cover Hoyt Clagwell Deals, Freebies, and Resources (No Self-Promotion) 5 03-20-2011 08:28 PM
Cover Design jaxx6166 Writers' Corner 79 07-03-2010 11:01 PM
Disappointed with my new Oberon Design cover sayhello Sony Reader 31 02-27-2010 09:39 PM
Accessories Help Design My Kindle 2 Cover/Case moxy789 Amazon Kindle 11 02-24-2009 11:37 PM


All times are GMT -4. The time now is 12:48 AM.


MobileRead.com is a privately owned, operated and funded community.