Reaching the final version of a book cover takes time. There are many steps of trying things out and finding out what works and what doesn’t.
This was one of the first designs my cover artist Julia sent me. When I agreed it was the prefect design, she drew it again and coloured it in.
This was one of our first attempts to figure out the colour combination and font. Obviously this would have made a bad cover since the writing is barely readable. But it’s a process of trying things out, so we continued.
In this draft Julia added textures to give the cover depth. We also turned the font white so it would be easier to read.
Although I already really liked this cover the evolution had to continue because once we did a test print we discovered the colours were far too dark to be discerned away from the high resolution of a computer screen.
With this draft we lightened the background, so it would be more discernable. We also tried to be clever and turn the figure all black because one of the protagonists who dresses up as a hero in my novel TO BE A HERO calls themselves “Shadow.” But upon showing this draft to people who didn’t know what the story was about (always a good way of finding out how potential buyers might view your cover), they thought it was much darker than the story actually is. So it didn’t convey the tone of the book accurately. Hence, we decided to make the cover lighter yet again.
This is the final book cover. As you can see it is a lot lighter than earlier drafts. However, we only made the final decision once we had checked the test print from the printers.