Covermakers Chat Thread

Non-reading activities need your help too!
amitsharma
Posts: 127
Joined: August 19th, 2018, 6:54 am
Location: Bhopal, India

Post by amitsharma » November 17th, 2018, 11:10 am

schrm wrote:
November 17th, 2018, 11:01 am
...while i am wondering about how often some people mention (in their opinion) low quality records on lv, eg, i assume that most listeners appreciate the work without thanking.
i really do that, and therefore i watch the download numbers on archive or some comments in the app...because i dont expect to get many thank yous..
Yes schrm, I guess for covers, no news is good news. :lol:

If no one is complaining about a mistake then it must be okay. :thumbs:
Amit Sharma, CC

"You can call me crazy, but you're just jealous that the voices don't talk to you."

schrm
Posts: 947
Joined: February 10th, 2018, 11:02 am
Location: Austria

Post by schrm » November 17th, 2018, 11:14 am

amitsharma wrote:
November 17th, 2018, 11:10 am
schrm wrote:
November 17th, 2018, 11:01 am
...while i am wondering about how often some people mention (in their opinion) low quality records on lv, eg, i assume that most listeners appreciate the work without thanking.
i really do that, and therefore i watch the download numbers on archive or some comments in the app...because i dont expect to get many thank yous..
Yes schrm, I guess for covers, no news is good news. :lol:

If no one is complaining about a mistake then it must be okay. :thumbs:
:D both of your sentences/lines sound like wisdoms.. :lol:
:thumbs:

greetings from austria!
schrm
reader/12275


deutsch
wunderwelten viewtopic.php?f=60&t=70793
sammlung kurzer prosa viewtopic.php?f=60&t=71431

english
violet viewtopic.php?f=2&t=70567

amitsharma
Posts: 127
Joined: August 19th, 2018, 6:54 am
Location: Bhopal, India

Post by amitsharma » November 17th, 2018, 11:19 am

schrm wrote:
November 17th, 2018, 11:14 am
:D both of your sentences/lines sound like wisdoms.. :lol:
:thumbs:

greetings from austria!
Thank you Sir.

Actually, Buddha was born not too far from here so I guess its something in the water... :lol:

warm greetings to you as well from India.
Amit Sharma, CC

"You can call me crazy, but you're just jealous that the voices don't talk to you."

mahne
Posts: 334
Joined: September 30th, 2014, 4:50 am
Location: Germany

Post by mahne » November 19th, 2018, 9:17 am

Hi all,

interesting discussion, let me give my 2 ct.

I'm at 73 covers till now and I do them because it's fun. Initially I wanted to get the hang with gimp, but now I love to get inspired, come up with an idea and finish the design within one or two days.

I don't want to do a "rockstar" cover that's screaming, I want to depict as truest to the book as possible what this book is all about, if that is possible in a luring way that's a bonus. That might be the reason why I'm almost always taking the book art if it is possible, apart from being made by a professional, the author possibly having had a say in that matter, it also conveys the time period and therefore the language and historic setting the listener will be confronted with.
The soloist/bc/dpl is probably the best person to tell how good I was at nailing the spirit of the book, so a thank you from him/her is the best compliment I could think of, but I don't want to push them into it, and posting in the completed thread would feel like fishing for compliments to me.

As to the "No news is good news" and "no one is complaining, that's a good sign", in real life that might be true, in LibriVox that is not the case and in my opinion the one drawback of our "Be nice" rule. No one can give criticism unless you ask for it. To make the point:

I hereby ask for constructive criticism on all/any of my covers (see signature), either PM or open on this forum are fine for me.

Another kind of praise is one from a coworker and that might be helpful as well and one of the reasons for this thread. So let me give some shoutout:

msfry: https://librivox.org/the-story-of-solomon-owl-by-arthur-scott-bailey/
Just the right picture for this, cared a lot about legibility, nice touch inverting text and shadow for the title and author.

annise: https://librivox.org/short-story-collection-vol-075-by-various/
You're so good and inventive with borders/frames and this is the perfect picture to lure you in and try to decipher what she's reading.

Availle: https://librivox.org/the-fourth-dimension-simply-explained-by-henry-parker-manning/
Wonderful creativity of choosing this picture and matching also the font to the theme of the book.

amitsharma: https://librivox.org/stories-weird-and-wonderful-by-joyce-emmerson-muddock/
this just pops in your eye and stays there, matches the mystery part. Also, in the cd case insert you get a shock when opening the pdf, fits perfectly to the horror theme.

schrm: https://librivox.org/das-schwarze-revier-by-paul-zech/
keeping the original cover and title while getting some color into it where all good decisions IMHO and cleanly carried out lead to this straight and true design.

Cheers
mahne
all covers made by mahne, constructive criticism appreciated

schrm
Posts: 947
Joined: February 10th, 2018, 11:02 am
Location: Austria

Post by schrm » November 19th, 2018, 11:16 am

thank you so much mahne :-)
and you know it already: your vanished hand cover was a sort of miracle for me and i thanked you as dpl for this book :-)
https://ia802901.us.archive.org/3/items/vanishedhand_1807_librivox/vanishedhand_1807.pdf
schrm
reader/12275


deutsch
wunderwelten viewtopic.php?f=60&t=70793
sammlung kurzer prosa viewtopic.php?f=60&t=71431

english
violet viewtopic.php?f=2&t=70567

Availle
LibriVox Admin Team
Posts: 15662
Joined: August 1st, 2009, 11:30 pm
Contact:

Post by Availle » November 19th, 2018, 9:11 pm

Hi mahne,
nice to see you around! :clap:
mahne wrote:
November 19th, 2018, 9:17 am
Availle: https://librivox.org/the-fourth-dimension-simply-explained-by-henry-parker-manning/
Wonderful creativity of choosing this picture and matching also the font to the theme of the book.
Actually, I don't find the choice of picture particularly "creative" since it is the only one to try and depict four dimensions in a way that is half-understandable...

It truly lies in the eye of the beholder. :lol:
Cheers,
Ava.

--
AvailleAudio.com

annise
LibriVox Admin Team
Posts: 30197
Joined: April 3rd, 2008, 3:55 am
Location: Melbourne,Australia

Post by annise » November 19th, 2018, 11:09 pm

I don't know how many I have made - it would be 4 figures I think. When people started wanting to make CD covers they were just displayed on the project page
We had people who wanted to share the M4Bs they made, they posted in a thread . as the numbers grew helped set up a page in the wiki as a "catalogue" Some people had made images with theirs and so I made some for the others.
Then when we were making the "new" LV catalogue the cover makers set off to have everything have a cover when it went online, Bart wanted me to turn the M4B images into covers and by the time we went online I think everything had a cover :D , So it's gone from a few people who were making CDs for friends and family to us using them in our catalogue and Archive's
So things can change and will, but we've probably gone as far as we can with the present software;

Anne

amitsharma
Posts: 127
Joined: August 19th, 2018, 6:54 am
Location: Bhopal, India

Post by amitsharma » November 20th, 2018, 1:47 am

Thank you for your kind words mahne. :D

I just saw your cover collection. You've done amazing work. I distinctly remember your Stories of Starland cover when I was browsing after joining here. Wonderfully done. Same with Crimson Cryptogram. Your choice of colors and fonts and the subtle effects you use clearly go against your "not trying for 'rockstar' covers". :)

The hard work shows. Especially in The Caged Eagle... as well as in October Vagabonds. Simple. Nice. I can see the work that went into that simplicity. :clap:

mahne wrote:
November 19th, 2018, 9:17 am
...That might be the reason why I'm almost always taking the book art if it is possible, apart from being made by a professional, the author possibly having had a say in that matter...
I'm sure a professional designer was hired by the publisher to make the covers for all the books we read here. But the designer had no other purpose in making the cover than to have it stand out above the others in a store book shelf. That is THE ONLY purpose a cover ever has - to promote the book. Any other reason for making it is not true. Its not for the writer's or the publisher's or even the artist's fancy. Its advertising. And it has to scream. The louder the better.

And it reflects the tastes and fashions of the time as a design must to survive. Fashions change over time. The purpose of design remains the same but the expression is a transient reflection of the people it represents, both in space as well as in time... i.e. German vs. Indian tastes. What was good a hundred years ago may not be as appealing today. Heck, what was in vogue five years ago may not reflect today's tastes. I guess that's why I've seen at least fifteen different covers for Tolkien's work over the years. The content is exactly the same but the covers totally different. And it works.

Me, I try to embed a part of today in a century old advertisement which may or may not get the same response otherwise. That's probably why I don't often use original cover content from that time. If a book is well written, its timeless. Its cover usually is not.

It's easy to assume a higher function for the cover but I humbly disagree. I think art and design are often apples and oranges. Making covers isn't just art though it employs similar execution techniques. Art is for its own sake and that's why its forever. Van Gogh's art survives because it is for its own sake. He painted how he felt and it lasts. I say that's pretty much how books work too and why we are all here. The author wrote the book for its own sake. That's art. But a cover has one job and one job alone, to promote the book. I'm sorry if anyone thinks there is any other reason. The cover artist was just trying to sell the cover. He may well have chosen entirely different content if it was left up to him and his art.

Fortunately for us, we don't have that restriction. The book is PD, we can do whatever we want for its cover and some of us do. :)

Amit
Amit Sharma, CC

"You can call me crazy, but you're just jealous that the voices don't talk to you."

schrm
Posts: 947
Joined: February 10th, 2018, 11:02 am
Location: Austria

Post by schrm » November 20th, 2018, 2:59 am

amitsharma wrote:
November 20th, 2018, 1:47 am


I'm sure a professional designer was hired by the publisher to make the covers for all the books we read here. But the designer had no other purpose in making the cover than to have it stand out above the others in a store book shelf. That is THE ONLY purpose a cover ever has - to promote the book. Any other reason for making it is not true. Its not for the writer's or the publisher's or even the artist's fancy. Its advertising. And it has to scream. The louder the better.


Amit
your first two or three covers i really tried to analyze, sort of.
i sort of thought: breaking all the rules i have made up for myself, they are just that, what i aim for (the eye-catcher, to make people nosy to listen to this book).
and to this day, your covers i remember and associate first, when i read your name, are:
https://librivox.org/dynamic-thought-by-william-walker-atkinson/
https://librivox.org/poems-by-mary-coleridge/
there is so much going on in these two..
they are all in all just beautiful.
and yes, a little bit screaming :-)

but please, dont forget: it is wonderful, that we can do this creative work, in all styles we have or want to try, too.
and availle: i like your cover, too. but i don't think, that ratings of creativity or working hours are defining the results, to be honest.
eg this cover just works, i think...
no need to diminish the results, maybe you are that "good"?
:9:

so, to mention another aspect: why i am not taking pictures out of the books, is, because i respect the laws of the eu "death of author (and translator and artist) + 70 years".
when my research shows, that i cannot use them safely, i try to look them up, also listen to the book for a few minutes, to get some sort of idea. most of the times, i am thinking along the lines of "something suiting, or something contrasting".
sometimes i begin to experiment in gimp first...
and then, after choosing some possible pictures, i claim the book and i want to create something..
catching the eye and make a little bit nosy.

while i have a gallery of covers i really liked, i cannot mention a cover for everyone here, im sorry.
just because i dont know, most of the times, who made it.
this one, eg, i liked again, while looking up amits coers: https://librivox.org/a-treatise-concerning-the-principles-of-human-knowledge-by-george-berkeley/
that is from anne and i think it remembers me from italian marble (maybe some relief or fresco).
but i remember, when i saved my gallery, i looked up the cover designer and saw new names i never heard of before, and everyone i know from the cover makers thread.
so, i think i can claim, that we all did covers to my liking...
and maybe i could find them or link to them after uploading on archive.
but i fear, i have several hundreds of cover pictures in my gallery, just to click through them (and remembering why i added them once and again)....
schrm
reader/12275


deutsch
wunderwelten viewtopic.php?f=60&t=70793
sammlung kurzer prosa viewtopic.php?f=60&t=71431

english
violet viewtopic.php?f=2&t=70567

amitsharma
Posts: 127
Joined: August 19th, 2018, 6:54 am
Location: Bhopal, India

Post by amitsharma » November 20th, 2018, 3:25 am

Oh Wow, thank you so much schrm. First for the good things you've said my covers and most of all for understanding my philosophy behind them. I am thrilled. :D

After reading your post, one thought did occur to me. That I do need to stick to some size constraints because our LV servers are not geared for heavy covers. That's why those two earlier covers have so much going on but the later ones are subdued. The file size is often at the forefront of my process because the more stuff that happens in the design, the bigger the file becomes. So I guess that's a design consideration that trumps any other aspect for me.

I think I even tried a cover without a single image to keep the file size down. And that took time but I still couldn't keep the size small enough. Finally I had to request Anne for some more elbow room for my covers and she graciously accommodated me. Thanks Anne. :clap:

Thanks again schrm and warm greetings from India (it's a warm 27C - 80F - bright and sunny late afternoon here) :)

Amit
Amit Sharma, CC

"You can call me crazy, but you're just jealous that the voices don't talk to you."

annise
LibriVox Admin Team
Posts: 30197
Joined: April 3rd, 2008, 3:55 am
Location: Melbourne,Australia

Post by annise » November 20th, 2018, 4:57 am

What I like most is to look at a page like say this one https://archive.org/details/librivoxaudio?sort=-reviewdate
and see the variety of images we produce. Different colours, different arrangements, different ideas. Images. patterns, relevant, pretty, beautiful.
I think it's great we all have different approaches, it doesn't mean any approach is better than any other. and how boring it would be to just have a standard background with the title and author on it

I'm glad someone liked my cover for https://librivox.org/a-treatise-concerning-the-principles-of-human-knowledge-by-george-berkeley/, I included the title page to give an idea of when it was written - and because I couldn't think of anything to use. but I'm sure someone else could have used a different approach

Anne

amitsharma
Posts: 127
Joined: August 19th, 2018, 6:54 am
Location: Bhopal, India

Post by amitsharma » November 20th, 2018, 7:50 am

annise wrote:
November 20th, 2018, 4:57 am
... Different colours, different arrangements, different ideas. Images. patterns, relevant, pretty, beautiful.
I think it's great we all have different approaches, it doesn't mean any approach is better than any other...
You have hit the nail on the head. I agree completely. :clap:

We each have to believe in our own approaches. That's all. The rest is academic.
Amit Sharma, CC

"You can call me crazy, but you're just jealous that the voices don't talk to you."

schrm
Posts: 947
Joined: February 10th, 2018, 11:02 am
Location: Austria

Post by schrm » November 20th, 2018, 9:43 am

amitsharma wrote:
November 20th, 2018, 3:25 am

I think I even tried a cover without a single image to keep the file size down. And that took time but I still couldn't keep the size small enough. Finally I had to request Anne for some more elbow room for my covers and she graciously accommodated me. Thanks Anne. :clap:

Thanks again schrm and warm greetings from India (it's a warm 27C - 80F - bright and sunny late afternoon here) :)

Amit
the bigger elbow room totally pays off, seems to be ^^
one aspect there,i think, are your skills, btw. i just merge the levels and or anchor them, you were speaking about scaled images from the beginnings...
so, way above my skills...

0°C cold greetings from austria, where the influenza is around..
:mrgreen:

have a nice evening @all!
schrm
reader/12275


deutsch
wunderwelten viewtopic.php?f=60&t=70793
sammlung kurzer prosa viewtopic.php?f=60&t=71431

english
violet viewtopic.php?f=2&t=70567

amitsharma
Posts: 127
Joined: August 19th, 2018, 6:54 am
Location: Bhopal, India

Post by amitsharma » November 20th, 2018, 10:40 am

schrm wrote:
November 20th, 2018, 9:43 am
...one aspect there,i think, are your skills, btw...
I have average skills at best. I only get by because I am persistent. Sometimes I'm at it till the wee hours in the morning if my design isn't going the way I want. I think that pays off more for me.
schrm wrote:
November 20th, 2018, 9:43 am
...0°C cold greetings from austria, where the influenza is around...
That is absolutely freezing. I am often amazed at the human capacity to tolerate the elements. Anyway, stay warm schrm.

I would probably build a fire in my room if it was that cold here. It's a cool 22°C -72°F- here and I'm wearing a sweater. :lol:

You stay warm and drink lots of fluids for the cold. Take care. :thumbs:

Amit
Amit Sharma, CC

"You can call me crazy, but you're just jealous that the voices don't talk to you."

schrm
Posts: 947
Joined: February 10th, 2018, 11:02 am
Location: Austria

Post by schrm » November 20th, 2018, 10:54 am

amitsharma wrote:
November 20th, 2018, 10:40 am


I would probably build a fire in my room if it was that cold here. It's a cool 22°C -72°F- here and I'm wearing a sweater. :lol:

You stay warm and drink lots of fluids for the cold. Take care. :thumbs:

Amit
i have an additional electric heater in my bedroom up and running, yes..
:)

thank you amit, and enjoy the warmth ^^
schrm
reader/12275


deutsch
wunderwelten viewtopic.php?f=60&t=70793
sammlung kurzer prosa viewtopic.php?f=60&t=71431

english
violet viewtopic.php?f=2&t=70567

Post Reply