Tuesday, October 8, 2013

DIY Book Cover

After a little bit of research I've decided that, if I ever finish this book, I'm going to self publish it. Now if you've read my blog before (or you know anything about self publishing) you know that this means I'll need someone to design the cover of my book.
A good cover design can run you a couple hundred bucks (at least!). So, in the spirit of saving money (and because I'll use any excuse to take a writing break) I thought I'd look into making my own book cover.
First, I spray painted an old bracelet to look like the "reaper bands" I describe in my book.  Next I hired a lovely teenager from down the street to come over to model for me.
I even had my daughter hold up a fan in a few shots so we could get that wind blown look (This didn't really work. The fan we used couldn't blow the petals off a dandelion!).
Because I asked my model to wear a black cloak and slink around my yard looking "mean", I paid her twenty bucks. Because my daughter talked her ears off the entire time she was here, I forced her to take the money even when she refused.
Anyway, after about half an hour I thought we had plenty to work with so I loaded the pictures into Lightroom. I took a little bit of time and played around with a few sliders (exposure, contrast, whites, blacks, a few brushes) and VIOLA.
Now it wasn't a complete success. I tried to get the eyes to look orange (the protagonist in my book has orange eyes), but my Lightroom skills weren't quite up to snuff.
I still need to add the title, my name, the back cover, and the spine. Plus, a few of the pictures need a background change, and then there's the formatting. The formatting alone might cause me severe chest pains, but it's worth a try!
Worst case scenario is that I won't be able to get it done and I'll still have to hire a professional.
But for 20 bucks, an old bracelet, and a few hours tinkering around on the computer, I'm happy with the results.
Let me know what you think! And if you have an inkling that I'm getting in over my head, let me know that too!!


  1. I like the top, lower left picture. Maybe you can do the eye colour thing in that one. I also liked the shodowing you have in the bottom, lower left one. I did my covers myself with Photoshop and was pretty happy with them. Check them out


  2. Your covers are awesome! I'm very impressed:) And now I just need to finish writing my book!!
    Thanks for your feedback!!

  3. If I were to pick up your book from the shelf the two that I'd grab would be the top one and the cloaked one where her hand is out. :) Just my two cents. Beautiful shots!

  4. Awesome! You know I JUST put that one with her hand out as the cover on Wattpad:) You just made my day!
    Thanks Jen!

  5. Okay, It's actually ten o'clock so you made my night;)