It’s been crazy. I must be the most fickle minded person Megan has ever met. Megan’s my cover designer, my confidant, my soulmate. And despite the ordeal, she still loves me. Huq was my photographer, my brother from another mother. There was a lot to learn from the cover shoot and the book designing process. So I’d thought I’d just write down a couple of pointers, for my future use as well.
Planning (Visualisation of idea)
- Sit down with your designer/photographer/conceptualiser (not a word, but it is now), and think of a direction. How do you want the cover to look like? Try to make a rough cover draft using photos from google. It’s going to look like sheeeet. But it gives you a sense of what to expect which is good.
- What kind of background are you looking at? Can you get it in real life? Where can you find it?
- What kind of models do you need? Colour, height, weight, physique.
- What are your models going to wear? Do they need hairstylists and makeup artists?
- What props do you require?
- What camera do you need? (The type of lens, the type of lighting)
- So you know your location, you know what attires to buy, you know what props you need. So how much are you going to spend to rent the location, to rent the equipment, to get the wardrobe etc.
- You’re going to go over budget anyway, so it doesn’t really matter, but please make a budget so you don’t go toooooo over the budget.
- Getting the models is a feat. Advertise on social media would be my suggestion. My models were all friends and friends of friends. So I don’t really have advice on this.
- Do the pre-shoot. Get your models to wear things that are close to what attires you want them to wear on the cover. Save your money, get clothes of your family, or the model’s own clothes. See what poses you want your models to be doing. What angle suits them. Try different lighting angles. Try different camera shots. NOTE DOWN WHAT WORKS.
- Do a pre-cover. A second rough draft of the cover with your models now. See if it will work.
- Check the fonts, check where you want the title/name to go.
- What size is your cover going to be? What size is your book? Do the calculations to get the right measurements.
- At this point, it’s now or never. If you think it will work, continue going. If you think nah… Then, don’t.
- The next step if you decide to go on with it is getting the items. You might not get exactly the type of attire you want. I suggest you go down to buy the wardrobe and the prop personally so that you’re okay with any minute changes. Either that or you leave it completely to the designer/photographer/conceptualiser to pick out the things.
Setting a date
- Setting a date for the pre-shoot and the actual shoot is going to be tedious depending on how many people are involved and their schedules. God bless your soul.
Actual shoot day
- Start early. Get as much shots as possible. AS MUCH. Remember what you noted down from the per-cover shoot. Get all the good angles and the poses.
- Refreshments for both pre-shoot and actual shoot is a must.
Designing the cover
- Set a deadline. Work together with your designer. There’ll be a lot of back and forths but it’s okay. Don’t be afraid to ask your designer to try different things (although it might annoy your designer, sorry Meg) but even if your idea doesn’t work, it beats wondering if it will.
That’s it for now. If I have anything further to add, I will update!