Sunday, 24 April 2011

Making a mock up (after a cock up)

I've got computer problems so this is my second go at this. I'd entered everything (and saved it) but not uploaded for publication when we were struck by a nasty virus. Although the computer is back online I can't get the scanner or drawing/editing software to work and I've lost the original images so I've revisited the initial idea, worked it up again and photographed it on my phone. Not sure how this will work but here goes.....
The book I chose was "Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance" which I read as a teenager. Those who know it will be aware that it's a road journey with philosophy. The book I have has a cover which I never felt gave the casual book browser a clue as to what they were buying

I found a photo of Robert Pirsig and his son on their bike which I reversed and drew from.
Originally I layered this on top of a map of the USA but without computer imput that is beyond me so I roughed out the design again.

Sorry it's not very clear but you get the gist. I used acrylic paint to rough out the map which means you can see it a bit clearer

 I then painted in the lettering, it's not as fancy as I would like but I guess this is just a mock up? I've used Pthalo Blue, Pthalo Green, Raw Umber, Buff Titanium and White to try and be coherant with colour. I tried to keep the figures quite "blocky" so that they will make sense when reduced in size for the actual book

One of the reasons I used the map was because I think the USA looks a bit like a brain (humour me I'm a veterinary nurse working with brain scanning technology...) I felt the book is realy about a journey through the author's head so I added the outline of the head. Part of me wants to make the map a bit more detailed and add a line to show the route of the journey which was from about where the front wheel is to California in the west but reason tells me this will be a bit too fussy. 
I found I could crop the original in Paint so you get;

Which looks a bit more finished. I think my choice of colours may be too muted to attract casual buyers but maybe proper lettering would add punch. The green is brighter in my original, with proper software I think I would like to liven things up a bit, can I have some embossing  on my cover or is this to be a budget publication?

Client visuals - examples

1) The brief is to create an image that feels futuristic, bold, fairly simple and slightly unnerving. The album looks into a future that is not entirely golden, rather sterile, impersonal and automated where humans are a little afraid of the machines that were built to serve them.

This is brilliant. He's a singer, he looks scared. The colours are simple, slightly brutal. The lines are reminiscent of those on the screen of an old computer, this is the future as imagined in the 1960's, Flash Gordon and Star Trek. It fits the album perfectly. (artist not named on album)

2) This is a tribute album. It feeds on nostalgia and affection but must not be sentimental. The target audience are probably over 30 many 40-50+ they need something that is sophisticated but doesn't remind them that they are ageing themselves.
Sir Peter Blake is brilliant. This is a lovely, respectful portrait of a man who is older but doesn't feel it. It's attractive to it's target audience (so much that I bought the album, having never listened to John Peel, because I love the picture - and like a few if the songs)

3) The target audience are late teenagers and their parents. The subject is important to them but not exciting. The illustration is to be used to lighten the subject matter, and to grab their attention when they are leafing through a lot of papers filled with information.
Clear, simple bright and eyecatching. The message is finance and the illustration makes it clear. Not too many colours to keep it cheap, but the choice of colours doesn't look cheap. Doesn't take attention away from the text, you feel you need to read the message to understand what is important about it. (original artist not named)