Can you judge this book by its cover?


REVISED COVER CLOSEUP:

I’ve centered the “Penelope” title in the oval better as suggested… I think that helped. I’m liking this tighter crop too, but it’s only because I’m zoomed in in Photoshop…

Picture 12

REVISED COVER POSTED:

Let me know your thoughts/concerns on this new one… I’ve lightened the environment, added detail and shading to the background elements and taken away the pink ribbon for “and her First Day…”

Picture 11

HERE IS THE FINAL COVER DESIGN! http://robthedesigner.com/blog/final-penelope-pilot-cover-art

Book designers, if my pages are 8 1/2″ x 11″ and I have about 40 pages, assuming it’s not a hardback, how much room should I allow for the spine’s width?

Any feedback on this cover design is appreciated – would it grab you on a shelf and prompt you to pick it up, if you were looking for a gift for your daughter for example? Are the colors too dark or too bright? I’ve turned off the text to not give stuff away since it’s not finally approved yet, and I still need to add detail and shading – but please give me your honest feedback about the cover.

We might say we don’t judge a book by it’s cover, but in the publishing industry, that’s just not true these days…

covertemp

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24 Replies to “Can you judge this book by its cover?”

  1. The cover shows the sunrise (originally it was dark) because the book starts off early early morning and in each illustration, we approach dawn. The final 2 page spread finally shows the sunrise after takeoff as they soar above the countryside.

    Good question – thanks for asking! =)

  2. The cover shows the sunrise INSERT INTO `wp_comments` VALUES (originally it was dark) because the book starts off early early morning and in each illustration, we approach dawn. The final 2 page spread finally shows the sunrise after takeoff as they soar above the countryside.

    Good question – thanks for asking! =)

  3. Rob,

    Nice cover. I think the suggested changes you have already implemented made it better. My only question is, the title references Penelope’s first DAY as captain, yet you show a night sky. Why is that? Don’t get me wrong – I like the night sky colors, it just doesn;t go with the title (unless it is a thematic element inside?).

    Regards,

    Tim Keeton
    Poet / Wizard / Teller-of-tales

  4. Rob,

    Nice cover. I think the suggested changes you have already implemented made it better. My only question is, the title references Penelope’s first DAY as captain, yet you show a night sky. Why is that? Don’t get me wrong – I like the night sky colors, it just doesn;t go with the title INSERT INTO `wp_comments` VALUES (unless it is a thematic element inside?).

    Regards,

    Tim Keeton
    Poet / Wizard / Teller-of-tales

  5. Hi! I think that overall you could brighten the image just a little. The purple is still a little dark and no reason to have any dark colors on the cover except in contrast to the lightest colors there, that is, to catch your eye that looks for that contrast. Just a tiny tiny bit brighter. And I still think you should lose the outside outline around the subtitle or better yet, make it yellow to match the wings with that gold outline color. put “and…”next to Pilot, and the rest of the line down below, but curved to match the curving of the oval, not curved the same way, but so that it too is curved, not straight. It will look good with the oval, and the type about twice the size it is now. The “and” should be on top of the oval and everything else, so that your eye sees it and wants to read the rest of the subtitle. That is part of the hook and at present you haven’t made me want to read that sub title. Make it the Naughty Design Element that won’t do the right things–On top of the oval, and the rest of the line curved. It will get your eye’s attention and then you are hooked! I also think you should have as much below the airplane as you have of the sky at the top. Not cutting off one and leaving the other with a blue border…and if you are going to cut off her blouse that is puffed giving a clue she is a she, then make sure the other sleeve is puffy, which it doesn’t seem to be now…Hope that helps!

  6. Hi! I think that overall you could brighten the image just a little. The purple is still a little dark and no reason to have any dark colors on the cover except in contrast to the lightest colors there, that is, to catch your eye that looks for that contrast. Just a tiny tiny bit brighter. And I still think you should lose the outside outline around the subtitle or better yet, make it yellow to match the wings with that gold outline color. put “and…”next to Pilot, and the rest of the line down below, but curved to match the curving of the oval, not curved the same way, but so that it too is curved, not straight. It will look good with the oval, and the type about twice the size it is now. The “and” should be on top of the oval and everything else, so that your eye sees it and wants to read the rest of the subtitle. That is part of the hook and at present you haven’t made me want to read that sub title. Make it the Naughty Design Element that won’t do the right things–On top of the oval, and the rest of the line curved. It will get your eye’s attention and then you are hooked! I also think you should have as much below the airplane as you have of the sky at the top. Not cutting off one and leaving the other with a blue border…and if you are going to cut off her blouse that is puffed giving a clue she is a she, then make sure the other sleeve is puffy, which it doesn’t seem to be now…Hope that helps!

  7. Hi Rob,
    Spine width is determined by your printer. They need to factor in paper weight, number of sheets, cover thickness, binding, etc.
    Choose a book similar to the number of pages and binding that you’re aiming for, and measure the spine. Use that number while you are in the design stage. I put a big fat note on my mechanicals at this stage, so I know the spine size is approximate.
    When the cover is approved, double check with the printer and adjust the spine size as necessary. Remove the note, lol.
    Good luck with your book!

  8. Hi Rob,
    Spine width is determined by your printer. They need to factor in paper weight, number of sheets, cover thickness, binding, etc.
    Choose a book similar to the number of pages and binding that you’re aiming for, and measure the spine. Use that number while you are in the design stage. I put a big fat note on my mechanicals at this stage, so I know the spine size is approximate.
    When the cover is approved, double check with the printer and adjust the spine size as necessary. Remove the note, lol.
    Good luck with your book!

  9. Rob,
    It’s not that she’s a pilot. It’s that her body buid is that of a male with the broad shoulders and boyish hair. I too thought the character was a boy when I saw it.
    I do like your color scheme. The plane doesn’t bother me, it’s cute.
    I am in agreement with the others about the banner being behind the arm instead of cutting off the hand as it is.
    I hope this helps you. Good luck. :)
    Lorraine

  10. Rob,
    It’s not that she’s a pilot. It’s that her body buid is that of a male with the broad shoulders and boyish hair. I too thought the character was a boy when I saw it.
    I do like your color scheme. The plane doesn’t bother me, it’s cute.
    I am in agreement with the others about the banner being behind the arm instead of cutting off the hand as it is.
    I hope this helps you. Good luck. :)
    Lorraine

  11. According to my daughter, any cartoon with eyelashes is automatically a girl. She doesn’t look too boyish to me – maybe people assume that because the character is a pilot?

  12. According to my daughter, any cartoon with eyelashes is automatically a girl. She doesn’t look too boyish to me – maybe people assume that because the character is a pilot?

  13. I like the idea; I’m not so fond of the execution.

    My initial impressions are:
    – thought the character was a boy (the wide shoulders, thick upper arms and simple hair style)
    – the plane was a blimp (the purple colors really push the plane back and viewing the small image as though I was seeing the cover from a distance at the bookstore rather than clicking on the image to see it larger)
    – wondered why you cut off the arm with the ribbon but then chose to have the hand overlap the oval (would recommend having the arm and hand over both)
    – wondered why you chose a night scene instead of daytime to help pop out the character and plane better (but that may be a major element of the story…flying at night)
    – author/illustrator text is difficult to read
    – yellow windows in background fight with the yellow wings of the emblem (guessing that’s the title area)

    Hope that helps; good luck with your project! :)

    t

  14. I like the idea; I’m not so fond of the execution.

    My initial impressions are:
    – thought the character was a boy INSERT INTO `wp_comments` VALUES (the wide shoulders, thick upper arms and simple hair style)
    – the plane was a blimp INSERT INTO `wp_comments` VALUES (the purple colors really push the plane back and viewing the small image as though I was seeing the cover from a distance at the bookstore rather than clicking on the image to see it larger)
    – wondered why you cut off the arm with the ribbon but then chose to have the hand overlap the oval INSERT INTO `wp_comments` VALUES (would recommend having the arm and hand over both)
    – wondered why you chose a night scene instead of daytime to help pop out the character and plane better INSERT INTO `wp_comments` VALUES (but that may be a major element of the story…flying at night)
    – author/illustrator text is difficult to read
    – yellow windows in background fight with the yellow wings of the emblem INSERT INTO `wp_comments` VALUES (guessing that’s the title area)

    Hope that helps; good luck with your project! :)

    t

  15. Hello Rob! I like the color theme, and the character, plane, and objects are outlined really well. The only thing I would do is put her arm in front of the banner like the others said and also maybe move the banner, plane, and circle a bit as to not make them touch in the same spots…if that is possible. I have to adjust the size and placement in my work too…so maybe just make the circle and banner a little smaller and move it away from the plane a bit. Thanks for letting us see it! I like traveling and airports so I would be interested in reading it!

  16. Hello Rob! I like the color theme, and the character, plane, and objects are outlined really well. The only thing I would do is put her arm in front of the banner like the others said and also maybe move the banner, plane, and circle a bit as to not make them touch in the same spots…if that is possible. I have to adjust the size and placement in my work too…so maybe just make the circle and banner a little smaller and move it away from the plane a bit. Thanks for letting us see it! I like traveling and airports so I would be interested in reading it!

  17. Hi Rob,
    I have to agree with the girl’s arm being in front of the banner. I also think the wings on the oval could read a little more like wings…i was unsure what they were initially. Other than that i think it looks really good! Nice lay out, nice colors.
    S.

  18. Hi Rob,
    I have to agree with the girl’s arm being in front of the banner. I also think the wings on the oval could read a little more like wings…i was unsure what they were initially. Other than that i think it looks really good! Nice lay out, nice colors.
    S.

  19. I like your color palate for your cover. The image makes me wonder what the book is about – I’d like to read it! I find the text in the lower right a bit hard to read with the white outline. Also, I’d prefer to see the girl’s arm come in FRONT of the pink banner, rather than get chopped by it.
    All the best for success for you with your work.

    Lynette

  20. I like your color palate for your cover. The image makes me wonder what the book is about – I’d like to read it! I find the text in the lower right a bit hard to read with the white outline. Also, I’d prefer to see the girl’s arm come in FRONT of the pink banner, rather than get chopped by it.
    All the best for success for you with your work.

    Lynette

  21. Rob,
    It’s been a while. Looking great! It has been awesome watching your progress on this project. Nice to see it all coming together. I wish you the best of luck on this and all future projects.

    Jeff

  22. Rob,
    It’s been a while. Looking great! It has been awesome watching your progress on this project. Nice to see it all coming together. I wish you the best of luck on this and all future projects.

    Jeff

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