Sounds fair, but the truth is that most of us, when shopping for a book do judge by the cover. The book we tend to pick up is most likely the book with an eye catching cover, an attractive image, interesting font or colors scheme. Once we pick it up, we then read the description and decide if this book is the right fit. Even if you donâ€™t buy it, something still influenced you in your decision to choose that book from the hundreds of other standing next to each otherâ€¦..
Why? Probably because the author and designer know their audience well and are following some of the design guidelines we are about to outline for you.
Before even starting to think about your cover, you should take time and define your target audience. Remember, you are not designing for yourself, your cover is supposed to attract and communicate with others! So make sure you know the target group you would like your book to connect with, taking into consideration the age, skills, abilities and interest your audience might have.
You have your ideal reader profile ready? Follows this guideline and avoid common design mistakes.
- First, you should create a folder on your computer or a scrapbook and gather images, patterns, and magazine clippings that you think would interest your target audience.
- Find some time for brainstorming, go through your collection of images and fonts and gather first ideas for your book cover. Brainstorming is not a onetime deal. Be patient!
- Once you have some great brainstorm results, try to work on some layouts. Be creative and draw, stick, or paint your ideas on a piece of paper that mirrors your cover size.
- Are some layouts ready? Now go ahead and simplify them. Yes, simplify, remember less is more! The best way to attract a reader to your book is via a clean and functional design.
- When designing your cover, make sure all elements belong together. Create a visual connection with the reader and guide him/ her through the cover; similarities and repetition of shape, color or texture are important to create unity.
- We are exposed to images all day: at work, in the newspaper, TV, advertisements and online. Keep in mind, getting the attention of your reader is difficult, focus on setting a focal point that will attract readerâ€™s attention. If you create that attraction, it will encourage the viewer to look further and actually pick your book among others.Scale and proportion will help you to set emphasis, simply by placing large scale in proportion to other elements on your cover.
- Distribution of visual weight within a cover is a key to creating a balance. Symmetrical balance is simple to create, itÂ´s when one side mirrors the image of the other. Asymmetrical balance is achieved with dissimilar objects that have equal visual weight or eye attraction.
- Including lines to your cover design will create movement but most importantly it will guide the reader through your cover.Â Our eyes tend to follow lines easily, use this to your advantage! Use line direction to create feelings; Horizontal lines imply peace, vertical lines imply power and strength and diagonal lines suggest movement. So according to what your book is about strategic line placing, could be used in the cover to underline the feeling of your book.
- Negative Space is important. Make sure you create some negative space that allows your readers eye to rest. Nothing is more distracting then a cover full of clutter!
- Color, is a complex subject. The right color can make or break your cover. Color adds visual interest and it is a powerful communication tool to signal action, influence mood and cause physiological reactions.
- RED is used to stimulate the body and mind and to increase circulation. But also the color red causes people to react with greater speed and force. Red is also a great color to express aggression.
- ORANGE was used to heal the lungs and to increase energy levels.Â Orange is considered an energetic color. Orange emphasizes excitement, enthusiasm, and warmth.
- BLUE was believed to soothe illnesses and treat pain. Blue is described as a favorite color by many people and is the color most preferred by men. Blue represents calmness or serenity and itÂ´s often described as peaceful, tranquil, secure, and orderly.
- GREEN symbolizes nature and the natural world. It represents tranquility, good luck, health, and jealousy. Researchers have found out that green improves reading ability itÂ´s increases reading speed and comprehension.
- YELLOW as bright it is, can create feelings of frustration and anger. While it is considered a cheerful color, people are more likely to lose their tempers in yellow rooms and babies tend to cry more in yellow rooms.
- BLACK is often used as a symbol of menace or evil, but it also indicates power. Black usually represents dark characters and it is often associated with witchcraft but also with unhappiness, sexuality, formality, and sophistication.
- WHITE represents purity or innocence. White can create a sense of space but its often described as cold and sterile.
We hope our tips will guide you to a perfect cover and soon we get to see it displayed in our bookstore. Remember, not all of the above may be necessary to implement in one cover, choose up to 3 tips and give your creativity a chance!