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Camino De Santiago

The author says:

This book has already been published, but I would like to have some help to improve the cover.

Book Content

A non-fiction book about preparing for the Camino de Santiago covering things like:

– When to go and what to take (and what to leave behind!)
– What to expect during the walk
– Addressing lots of practical things like insurance, cultural shock, health, communication etc
– Pilgrims anecdotes to illustrate the points
– Links to other resources

CoverWeb2

CoverWeb2

Nathan says:

Now, I’m not a Camino de Santiago expert (in fact, I had to google it just so I’d know what we’re talking about here), but I would surmise that a guidebook such as this goes broadly under the category of “travel guidebooks,” for which it looks fairly appropriate; travel guides consistently have a no-nonsense vibe about them that says, “You can trust me.”

I think the design weaknesses here can be best seen in the thumbnail: The title merges into the background, and the subtitle wars with the title for importance.  Here’s what I would do:

  • Find a font that’s similarly no-nonsense (likely, but not necessarily, another sans-serif font) which has a thicker silhouette.
  • Use that font for the title, subtitle and byline.
  • Play with putting those (the title, subtitle and byline) in a darker color that will stand out against the background, possibly with a slight drop-shadow.
  • Make the subtitle smaller so it’s easy to tell which is the title and which is the subtitle.
  • I like having the byline to one side to balance out the signpost in the photograph, but I’d move it in and up some so that it really balances the signpost.

Anyone think anything different?

 

Comments

  1. You need to remember that not everyone who sees your book will be familiar with the subject.

    This is an easy trap to fall into. It’s much too easy to forget how familiar you are with a subject but that it might be something entirely new to someone else.

    Be sure that you make clear what the title of your book is: making everything the same font at the same size can be confusing.

    You need to choose a better photo. For one thing, that object in the foreground may make sense to someone who has walked the Camino, but it is meaningless to anyone else. It looks as though it is probably a mileage or direction marker, but, as I said, that would be readily apparent only to someone who has already walked the route…exactly the person your book is not aimed toward.

    This is a small point, but a “pilgrim” is a person who is making a journey to a holy place. Unless the destination is the most important thing about walking the Camino—that is, whatever lies at the end of the road—I would not use that word. Walking the road itself cannot rightly be the goal of a pilgrim.

  2. It seems to fit the genre of the book well. I like that the font matches the colours of the box on the floor. I would experiment with making the font bolder and larger and using a thicker blue outline on it.

  3. I hope this isn’t too presumptuous, but I thought I’d have a go at tweaking the elements here along the lines suggested. I also lowered the angle to draw the viewer more into the scene and used the road’s vanishing point to lead the viewer’s eye to the title. Plus I blew up the milestone in the corner to provide more of an anchor in the foreground.

    Here’s the mockup.

  4. I agree 100% with what Nathan said about the font and color.

    I also had to googlethink the biggest problem I have with this cover is the photo. It needs something more dramamtic. Just a quick Google search and this popped up:
    http://www.caminomyway.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/12/Camino-marker-Pyrenees-Camino-de-Santiago-the-French-Way.jpg

    That looks more inviting, and the stones on the marker really adds some life to the photo, even though no people are shown. I’m sure you can find a similar stock image to buy.

  5. As the submission guidelines here say “4) Shut up…” please allow me still to say ‘Thank You!’ for all your input. I shut up now, but rest assured that every opinion voiced here will be considered for the new cover. Special Thank You to Take Cover for his / her most helpful mock-up, but everybody else: You were also a big help to make my cover better, so Thank You All! SY

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