Monday 15 August 2011

Changes to My Cover Artwork

Despite Friday's promises to myself to get my head down today and get on with my Baby Can Bounce artwork, I have been headed off at the pass. Egmont need me to make some changes to the cover artwork for Baby Goes Baaaaa! 

There have already been a few minor alterations to the original 'final' design, mostly to the back cover, like adding blocks of colour, to allow us to use some good quotes. I think it looks better for it:

But I first got wind of a new problem last week, when Egmont phoned to tell me the buyer at Waterstones had an issue with the yellow background colour. I'm not sure I really understand the problem, but Waterstones are sufficiently important that they can't be ignored. They want something softer, so Sarah, my designer, has been frantically trying to find another colour that works under my illustration. 

She put this duck-egg blue to Waterstones, and they have agreed it. I don't like it as much as the yellow, but hey-ho: there are times when it's wiser to go with the flow. 

Unfortunately, my illustration was designed to work on yellow, so has subtle yellow reflections in lots of the colours that now don't make sense, as well as a slight yellow 'furring' around the edges, that helped it 'sit' on the original colour and not float above it. Not to mention the yellow shadows... 

Which is why I have had my head in Photoshop most of today. Thanks goodness for digital technology.

You might spot a couple of other changes: 

The slug is now yellow - that's to match the original slug colour on the inside. I only changed it to orange so it would show up better on the yellow cover. 

We have also taken out the butterfly, then put it back on the other side, and we've removed the frog completely. Waterstones preferred things simpler. I have less problems with that: they may well be right. The frog re-appears, with the monkey, on the inside back cover (the lilac square is just standing in for the Baby Can Bounce cover).

I can't imagine why they didn't like the 'speedy' strap-line on the original though. As you can see from the top images, they made us move it underneath, to a more conventional position.

I'm guessing that those readers who don't work in book publishing will be shocked at how much creative control is in the hands of others; I'm sure the 'old hands' are not!

Unfortunately, there will be no opportunity for pastelling tomorrow either: I am doing a day of illustration workshops in Salford, to tie in with my exhibition. I'll let you know how it goes.


Jacqueline Hudon-Verrelli said...

That's too bad about the 'speedy' strap-line on the original drawing. I thought it was great type placement and much less predictable. It integrated the words into the image really well.

Lynne the Pencil said...

Yep - my thoughts exactly. Grrrrr...

Julie Clay Illustration said...

Sounds like a bit of argy bargy going on there lynne, but how exciting to be in Waterstones, that's a big deal I imagine! Well done, I'd be mega made up! I don't know how you do all you do, you seem so busy. I'm in the middle of making it snow at our house, just a minor miracle I'm about to perform, but it's very steady compared to your goings on! Good Luck with it all. X Julie

Maria said...

Hello Lynne
Had to smile when I think I realised why they changed the position of the speedy strap line, babies do tend to make very strange shall we say nappy noises from the area where the strap line is!!! So annoying though all that extra work.
Thanks for the blog.

June said...

I'm with you in prefering the yellow background for the cover, but I do think it was quite 'busy' and the blue calms it down a little.
I think with the changes in text positioning, moving of frog and butterfly etc. the yellow would have worked just fine with the simpler design. But I guess they know what sells best.

Personally I get irritated that so many people have a say in a book's design, which I feel should be left to the designers and creators to have the final say... After all, do we tell them how to display their stock and decorate their store?
But, I know we have to comply ...sigh!

Good that you explain it so clearly here, so that new illustrators understand it is just part of the business.

Lynne the Pencil said...

LOL! Maria, I never thought of that - you could be right!! How funny. x

Anonymous said...

I prefer the yellow, but as you say, the client's preferences rule. It's annoying though to have so many changes. Nice to be in with Waterstones! :-)

Advocate Art said...

Lovely illustrations and character designs!

From the Advocate team.