Wednesday, October 10, 2012
Creating the Crime Novel Cover
Over at Blasted Heath crime e-publishers, the cover artist of choice is JT Lindroos. Here's the final version of the cover for HARD BITE written by Anonymous-9, available everywhere e-books are sold on October 25th, 2012. JT Lindroos talks about the cover-art process, in his own words...
Being a movie buff, when I got the logline for the book ("A wheelchair bound vigilante with an assassin monkey") I thought of an AMAZING MR. NO LEGS and MONKEY SHINES poster mashup. Given budget and time constraints, this is a simplified and modernized version of that initial idea.
With any e-book cover you want keep it simple. Much as I'd love to do a retro pulp or faux movie poster cover, the amount of time and money allotted for e-book covers means finding shorthand to get an idea across. I thought it might be a funny gag cover to send to Al [Guthrie] for a laugh, but soon as I drew it up, it just worked. I quickly assembled the rest of the cover and sent it off to Al hoping he'd like it too. I often send covers I 'kind of like' for some feedback, but in this case I was hoping he'd just go with it. He did.
The rusty background provided texture more interesting than a solid, clean surface. Grit, rust, whatever is another easy and appealing shorthand for something that's visceral and lo-fi, not overproduced pablum. It suggests and implies, but allows you to read into it whatever you wish.
Note: The editor for the HARD BITE book trailer, Mark Oguschewitz, took all the elements of the cover and utilized them in the video title cards. Now, the handicap-icon stick figure rolls through the video brandishing his gun, and the rusty, textured background is the new backdrop for quotes about the book.
BIO: JT Lindroos was born in Finland. Happily married for the past 12 years, Lindroos gained his US citizenship 5 years ago. He's a fast worker, affordable, and whatever fields he's been in (design, publishing, writing, statistics) he's—for better AND worse—self-taught in all of them. http://jtlindroos.carbonmade.com/