“Don’t judge a book by its cover”, or so the saying goes. Of course we know that most do the exact opposite. Visuals do attract attention, after all, and great visuals can create buzz and propel a product further than it might go on its own. So I felt it important that my fantasy novel have a cover that is eye-catching and creates a pull that might draw the viewer into the story.

I already had a lovely piece furnished by Melissa Krauss of Art by Mel designs, featuring Nyori Sharlin, one of the story’s main characters.

nyori_cover

It truly is a beautiful work of art, and I still have plans to use it as a cover, most likely for the collected series. But for the debut novel I realized that I wanted to feature both of the main characters, and I wanted the art to look similar to the painted fantasy art reminiscent to the covers of the novels that I have enjoyed over the years. So the search began for a suitable artist. I was fortunate to come across Shen Fei on deviantArt. His fantasy images blew me away: just the dynamic, Frank Frazetta-type style that I was looking for.

After I gave him the details of what the characters looked like, he went to work. The first thing was producing the initial sketch.

cover_sketch

After the sketch was approved, a color rough was produced.

cover_sketch_color

And after the rough, the piece was given the important detailing and touch-up, resulting in a truly magnificent piece of work. I could not have been more pleased and impressed. Wouldn’t you agree?

cover

Lastly the title/author fonts had to be added. I wanted fonts that would be easy to read, but distinctive as well. Fortunately Photoshop had just what I needed. I used their bevel feature to add a three-dimensional appearance to give it the right amount of enhancement. The last thing to consider was the color. White font looked lost against the background, and black font wasn’t satisfying either. Good thing for the stack of thick fantasy novels that line my bookcase. Looking through them, I found a Wheel of Time novel that featured a similar colored snowy background. The maroon colored font they used stood out well, so I went the same way with mine. Can’t go wrong imitating skilled professionals, right?

And so I’m proud to present the cover to The Eye of Everfell, coming your way Dec. 15 2014. Shen Fei deserves all the credit for such remarkable work. Make sure to visit his site for more striking imagery.

eyecover2

Love the cover? Hate it? Be sure to let me know in the comments. Interested in the novel? Be sure to order it at Amazon, or check out bardwritesbooks.com for more details.

*Update*

After conferring with Ivan Zanchetta (http://ivanzanchetta.com), I commissioned him to redesign the font with this result: The Eye of Everfell 01

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