A step-by-step guide to the book cover design

A step-by-step guide to the book cover design

Have you heard the phrase not to judge the book by its cover? Well, it never works with a book cover design, does it? Even if the way the book is designed is not the crucial element that influences your choice, it is still significant.

The main purpose of any book cover design is to attract the right audience, which means it would be well-perceived and, therefore, well-sold. Everything depends on the readers, so they should be the starting point of your book cover design. Let’s take a look at the main readership examples to understand what books they will most definitely buy.

Books For Children

Strangely enough, this is the most sophisticated audience. Not because the little ones are extremely picky (though, sometimes they might be) but due to the fact that parents want to get the best for their kids. Thus, they will be very meticulous about the books they buy. So, how to create a perfect book cover design for children?

  1. Pay attention to the colors. Such book covers need to be bright and engaging. Have you ever seen any dark books for children? No, because none will buy things like those. What is more, kids love it when they see the rivet of colors, the splash of emotions. Make your book warm so that it could share the right emotions with children and their parents. For instance, take a look at the book cover design created by Sara Wafik. It reflects the whole spectrum of mother’s love, making the book look “cozy”.
  1. Think of the characters. Your book cover design aimed at kids needs to have a character the little ones will adore. Unique characters will be a half of your book’s success. That is why they need to be captivating and memorable. In this case, every detail matters. Look at the way a graphic designer Savina has turned her 3D small Hophops into superb characters of the books for children. These original characters help children learn more about colors, which makes them even more interesting.

Books For Teens And Young Adults

Сontrary to popular opinion, teens and young adults love reading. It helps them to grow up and to understand themselves. As a Spanish novelist Carlos Ruiz Zafón once wrote,

“Books are mirrors: you only see in them what you already have inside you.”

That is why a book cover design for teens and young adults should look brave, adventurous, and filled with love and friendship. What should you never forget when you create a book cover for this audience?

  1. Teens and young adults will appreciate it if you add action. A lot of action to your book cover design. To make them interested in your product, they need to realize it is worth their attention and that they can find something for themselves. That is why the hardest part would be to create a story filled with adventures and place it entirely on the cover. Think of Dienel and the book cover this graphic designer created. This very cover contains fire, struggle, and fight. If you are familiar with the concept of the horizon of expectations in literature, you will understand that this cover accepts the rules of this phenomenon and makes you play according to these rules.
  2. Play with fonts. Make sure the fonts you use on the book cover design are clear but not trivial or boring. This will distinguish your book from all the rest on the shelf and, at the same time, won’t scare people away.

Books For Adults

Indeed, the range of this particular type of audience is quite wide. However, there are several common points that always should be taken into account.

  1. Avoid clichés. You design a book cover to make your product better, to help it get distinguished and get remembered. Such clichés as, for example, lovers for a love novel book cover will not assist your book in getting sold. Think different, think outside the box. Try coming up with several concepts and then choose the best one. Perhaps, you will even need to conduct a survey to find out which cover will be the most beneficial option.
  2. Show emotions. Your book cover design needs to be emotional. It has to reflect anticipation, trust, joy, sadness, fear etc. Emotions are the key that connects people to your product. For example, look at the book cover design created by Xenia Voronicheff. Love, support, and closure: this is what a random person can feel while looking at this graphic design entry. You will want to look closer at this book and, perhaps, you will want to keep it, due to the tenderness it carries inside.

Bottom Line

Books and imagination always go hand by hand. If there is no design without imagination, creating your next book cover will be much easier for you. Just get inspired, and you will be awarded by the readers who adore your book!