Image credit: User TBIT on Pixabay
Image credit: User TBIT on Pixabay
I have been called the queen of free when it comes to cover designing. That means I try to produce an eye-catching product with free images and elements. I was reading for inspiration an interview with another cover designer, and he mentioned that he created a crest for a fantasy cover using a program that costs over $700. And that was just one element of that admittedly stunning cover.
Well, I want to design stunning covers too, but I can’t afford that much for just one designing tool right now, however cool it may be. So I tried some things I have on hand, and I’m going to show you how I created this cover, which I think is pretty cool.
I started with this man, a free image from Pixabay. My first do-it-yourself tip is make sure you find the highest quality and resolution images you can. Well-trained and well-equipped designers often hire models, create costumes, and shoot their own pictures for covers because they have control of the quality, resolution, and lighting, critical elements of a knock-your-socks-off cover. But this image’s resolution and lighting are perfect for the effect I wanted, and it’s free.
I didn’t want such a clean-cut scary guy, however. so I grabbed some of his own hair, trimmed and faded edges, twisted and turned it in different directions, created different lengths and shapes, and gave him a case of bed-head that changed him forever.
Next I changed the color of his eyes. Neither one of them stayed its original shade. From blue-grey they went to one ice-blue to match his jeweled crown, and one gold. I wanted the gold eye to match the background, which is also free on Pixabay. I loved the gritty but glowing variety it made.
I decided he ought ought to be a king, so I gave him a crown. These raised shapes, in the crown, the corner ornaments, and the “O” in Force, came with my design program. They have many metallic and colored finishes, and even leathers, furs, fabrics, and plant textures, that I can apply. I have more options I can add, too, from free sites like Webtreats. I just had to tweak the shades and metallic and jewel finishes and add shadows.
So the images were finished, but next I needed a catchy title. Technically I want to sell this as a premade, so I don’t get to decide the final title. But I really hope it’s something with an “o” in it so I can use the Queen’s crown I made as a design element. I love it when the text is a design in itself and incorporates a story element. This font is freebooter, and the author name font is called Hayden.
If there’s someone out there writing a fantasy or even historical fiction story about a forced marriage, or just a creepy old king, let me know if I can help you. My creepy old king needs a home.
Anyone who has questions about cover design, or feedback or suggestions on what kinds of tutorials I could share in the future, please let me know!
If you would like to contact me about any of my covers or designing, here are my links:
Or just post a comment here! Thanks! — post by Mary C. Findley
We know some people love the smell and feel of paper books, so we are happy to meet that need. Following is a list of Findley Family Video Publications print titles as of 7/31/2015, in alphabetical order. Some are still filtering through from CreateSpace to Amazon and getting connected to the ebook titles. As soon as that happens, the only titles not available in print are The Acolyte’s Education and Carrie’s Hired Hand, short stories fewer than 50 pages in length. So, if you want print versions of any of our other books, hang on until they are all in place at your favorite online retailer and then snap them up.
1. A Dodge, a Twist, and a Tobacconist
3. Benny and the Bank Robber (BBR 1)
4. BBR 1 student study guide
5. BBR 1 teacher study guide
6. Biblical Studies Student Edition NT
7. Biblical Studies Student Edition OT
8. Biblical Studies Teacher Edition NT
9. Biblical Studies Teacher Edition OT
10. Chasing the Texas Wind
11. Doctor Dad (BBR2)
12. Empire Saga
13. Ephron Son of Zohar
14. Fifty Shades of Faithful
15. Fifty Shades of Faithful 2: In Living Color
16. Heth, Son of Canaan, son of Ham, Son of Noah
17. Hope and the Knight of the Black Lion
18. Lines in Pleasant Places (BBR 4)
19. Nehemiah, LLC
20. Send a White Rose
21. Shelometh Daughter of Yovov
22. Tawananna, Daughter of Zohar
23. The Baron’s Ring
24. The Conflict of the Ages Student 1 The Scientific History of Origins
25. The Conflict of the Ages Student 2 The Origin of Evil in the World that Was
26. The Conflict of the Ages Student 3 They Deliberately Forgot: The Flood and the Ice Age
27. The Conflict of the Ages Student 4 Ice Age Civilizations
28. The Conflict of the Ages Teacher 1-3 combined
[ The first 3 are not in print separately but in are 1 combined teacher edition]
The Conflict of the Ages Teacher 1 The Scientific History of Origins
The Conflict of the Ages Teacher 2 The Origin of Evil in the World that Was
The Conflict of the Ages Teacher 3 They Deliberately Forgot: The Flood and the Ice Age
29. The Conflict of theAges Teacher 4 Ice Age Civilizations
30. The Good , the Bad, and the Ugly A Readers’ and Writers’ Guide for Believers
31. The Great Thirst 1: Prepared
32. The Great Thirst 2: Purified
33. The Great Thirst 3: Pursued
34. The Most Dangerous Game (Alexander Legacy 3)
35. The Oregon Sentinel (BBR 3)
36. The Pinocchio Factor (Alexander Legacy 4)
37. What Are the Results of the Establishment of Secular Humanism? (Serial Anti 4)
38. What Is an Establishment of Religion? Serial Anti 1)
39. What Is Science? (Serial Anti 3)
40. What Is Secular Humanism? (Serial Anti 2)
41. Write for the King of Glory
42. Zita Son of Ephron and Shelometh