More Cover Work

Recently I was asked to be a beta reader for an indie author. There were promises of military sci-fi and I had visions of Halo dancing through my head and I was really craving something along those lines. What I got was something even better. Now when I hear indie author beta read, I cringe because I’ve been down this road before. Just because someone got the idea that they can publish at will they think that makes them a writer. I’ve had more than my fair share of terrible prose. This was not the case here. Scott Whitmore’s Green Zulu 51 and Other Stories from the Vyptellian War was a fantastic read. So much so that I offered to do the cover for him. This book deserves readers because it’s an examination of prolonged war from those involved on every level of it. It’s grade A military sci-fi written by someone who understands that world. As the son of a veteran scarred by war I found the book sobering and compelling.

This wasn’t going to be an ordinary cover. There were time constraints and reservations on Scott’s part. I mean, as I told him in him our correspondence, at the end of the day I’m just some dude on the internet offering to do a cover. I have some artwork up here and I’ve done covers, including my own, over the past few years but I don’t exactly have a long track record of works for people other than myself. So I understood those reservations and I wanted to reassure him that I would deliver on a cover for a story that I loved.

On a tight budget and time crunch Scott picked this stock photo and asked me to make it fit the work. Having read it that was easy, in my head at least.

shutterstock_126817232 (1)

Pretty good layout but too much lens flare, J.J would be proud, but for the sake of a good cover it needed to die a quick and rather painful death.

GZcover

Added the text and got that lens flare gone. I stared messing with ships. Alexnegrea put some awesome brushes up for free use on Deviant Art. Check out his page for some really cool art. I needed the brushes because of the time crunch I’m a cartoonist at heart not a tech designer. Given time I could’ve made some ships from scratch but that was a luxury we didn’t have. The brushes were great sillhouettes but the ships were flat so they needed depth.

GZcovermoreships

The ships in the foreground came out great and really fit with the drones in the story. I started messing with making the space station busy and gave Scott a few options as we bounced emails back and forth. After many tweaks, which thanks to Photoshop took very little time at all, we settled on the final cover.

GZbiggerships

It came out pretty awesome. Love the depth I was able to add to the original brushes. This cover making thing is starting to get fun. I’ve got a few lined up in the near future but would love to do more. So indie authors, publishers, I’m here to make that that happen. Contact me if you need cover work. Turnarounds on photo manipulations like Scott’s cover are fairly quick. Something like Amanda’s Grim Tidings cover would take more time as it was 100% drawn and painted from scratch and given that I have a day job took a few weeks.

Here is the link to pre-order the book which I highly recommend. Green Zulu 51 and Other Stories from the Vyptellian War

Norm

 

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2 Responses to “More Cover Work”

  1. You’ve done truly beautiful work here. Congratulations!

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