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Fake Book Cover #2, Round #2!

Poking at the horror cover some more. Thank you all for the feedback (I think I gotta backburner the garden one for a bit--I've hit the point where I've stared at it for so long that it no longer has any visual meaning.)

On this one, I discovered that it got a little less saturated in my posting of it, so here is another version--bumped up the saturation on the colors, lowered the brightness on the title, made the blurb bolder, and bumped up the kerning between the letters by about ten points (not sure if anyone can tell...)

This feels almost too easy--dark woods, slap title on, call it a day. I suspect I may have gotten lucky that I have a very creepy driveway and a lot of photoshop actions at my disposal, but still, shouldn't there be some way that I can do ten times as much work and make it ten percent better? (Pardon, my Catholic is showing...)

And then I start thinking that maybe there's a certain sort of cover where any photo you take of anything is creepy if you flatten it out and make it dark enough and then put a particular sort of font on it and what if I could make a supernatural horror cover out of anything, I could wander around taking photos of pigeons and my long-stuffering barista and the recycling bins behind the coffee shop--"RECYCLING: TERROR COMES BACK OVER AND OVER AGAIN!"--and go MAD WITH POWER and then I need to go lie down for a minute with a damp cloth over my eyes.


Based on feedback about the text being too low contrast now, here's another version! (Argh, marginal tweaks over and over, my bane...) Thank you, guys, for putting up with me...

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TL;DR: Simple designs are great.

I actually liked the contrast between the text and the photo in the desaturated version. Feels too sepia now. I'll come back to that.

And simple designs allow the elements you choose to have the maximum impact. One of the worst things you can do is overdesign because it feels too easy.

Take a billboard. People see a billboard usually while driving by it at high speed. You have a few seconds to make a lasting impression. If you fill the billboard with a ton of information, even if it's visual, nothing will be communicated to the viewer. Your book's the same. Bookshelves in a store (or virtual ones on amazon's tile view) have limited shelf space. If they display your book face out how likely am I to form an impression of it while passing through if it's really complicated in the information it's trying to give me?

Going back to my original comment, it's possible my experience is different from other people's. I remember you saying that paintings with a lot of yellow in the background score lower when they go through the process of selecting art for trading cards. There's a lot more yellow in the hue it is now than in the hue it was before, and the hue it is now is very close to the hues of your text. Less impact. I'd pick the other cover up and read the back. I am ambivalent about the spacing between the letters. Can't tell if that has also changed my opinion.

Like I said, my experience may be different from others. I still like the design of this cover a lot.

you could do evil things with quails...

I like the kerning on this one (yes, I can tell) and the saturation is nice, though I think it was fine before. I think the brighter title worked better however, it drew the eye to it; this version my eyes kinda bounce between the top of the cover and the title and don't stick where they should, on the title.

The only book I can remember buying almost solely off the cover is Under the dome, in this version: https://bokstavlarna.files.wordpress.com/2011/08/underthedome.jpg

A very simple design, with a super striking picture.

I like what you did with the kerning, and the picture. The text color, however, is too close in value to the background and makes it hard to read.

Please, please please do the Recycling horror cover! Pretty please?

I too would like to see the horror of recycling cover. And the horror of the barista. And the horror of the pigeons. Practice makes perfect you know... And tweaking things does not count as practice.

I do like the Art Deco style font though my brain insists the lettering should be a bit higher because at a quick glance the lettering is below the eyeline when you look at the picture. Not quite sure if I'm explaining it right.
Basically my eyes look at the picture and then have to flick down to read the blurb.

I prefer the second one. The first is too dark to see more than 'oh, ok, woods'. The second one I think, 'oh woods and ...what ARE those strange things on the left?' You might want to brighten the description just a bit because as a smaller font it's harder to read. Or it could be my eyes are acting up.

I like it (both versions), but it's the kind of thing I like anyway.

The higher contrast is much better!

One thing to keep in mind is how does it look on paper? Most monitors today will mess up the contrast depending on the angle you are viewing it.

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