Tag Archives: historical novel

Behind the Scenes – Orphans’ Inn

A cover for Melange Books. For this cover, we wanted to give the book a historical feel. The author had found an image of the actual inn in the story, which I used to look for similar buildings. Though we ultimately chose to focus on the feel of the book, rather than use an exact image, the author was able to obtain permission to use a cropped photo of the inn on the back cover. So the picture of the actual inn will be on the back cover, a piece of history that adds to the book’s theme.

I used a similar treatment for both the front and back of the book, using the picture of paper that was nailed to a wall as the guidelines for a frame. The composite image on the front gives a feel for the time period, characters involved, and genre, while the back cover provides room for text. I adjusted the back cover image to make room for the barcode and publisher information.

This was my first time using stock from the Dollar Photo Club, a new stock site that Melange Books uses. While I found that the comp images were very small (which made it hard to render a full mask, which I can usually do with comps from Dreamstime), the final image quality is about the same. I had no problems using Photoshop to resize and align the images with the proof cover.

This is the end result:

SBibb - Orphans' Inn - Book Cover

SBibb - Orphans' Inn - Back Cover
Stock images from The Dollar Photo Club:

https://www.dollarphotoclub.com/80507187 – map texture
https://www.dollarphotoclub.com/61586012 – town
https://www.dollarphotoclub.com/73464105 – wagon
https://www.dollarphotoclub.com/56496709– girl body
https://www.dollarphotoclub.com/65625942 – curly hair
https://www.dollarphotoclub.com/84585040 – paper on wall


Filed under Book Covers, Photo Illustration

Behind the Scenes – Nairobi Bloodstar

This is a cover for Melange Books. In my first proof, I gave this more of a historical movie poster look, but upon learning the book had a bit more of an action-thriller bent, I put more of a focus on the train wreck explosion than the scenery and characters. Still, I added texturing to give the cover the historical feeling, and I played with the coloring (we wanted the red highlights for the ruby). After playing with positioning of the title and the hands with the ruby, this is the final result:

SBibb - Nairobi Bloodstar - Book Cover

Stock images from Dreamstime:







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Filed under Book Covers, Client Work, Photo Illustration

Behind the Scenes – Red Sun Over Panama

This is a cover for Melange Books.

The novel is an espionage/mystery novel with a historical setting, and based on the art form, I pictured a setting or rising sun over the ocean with the WWII Japanese flag behind it. I had a few questions based on what I’d read on the form, though, so I sent an email to the author before creating anything to clarify a few points in the story. I’d thought about having some sort of era based aircraft in the background, but I wasn’t sure what would be appropriate to the story. Turns out there weren’t any references strong enough to warrant having it on the cover. However, in corresponding with the author, he mentioned an idea for the cover that sounded very similar to what I had in mind. So I went ahead and created a proof based on a combination of both those ideas, and in the end, this is the result.

SBibb - Red Sun Over Panama - Book Cover

In the case of the flag, I used the stock image for the basis, then extended the suns rays so that they would bleed off the edge of the cover. Another thing I found that may be useful to keep in mind is that deep reds don’t seem to want to translate well from sRGB to CMYK for the print version. As a result, I found that curves adjustments and color balance adjustments can be rather useful in trying to match the CMYK print version of the cover to the RGB ebook version.

Stock images from Dreamstime:




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Filed under Book Covers, Client Work, Photo Illustration