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Cover Image Question

I’m considering changing the cover image for my novel She Who Comes Forth, a paranormal adventure set in Egypt in 1962.

Which of these two images intrigues you most? If you’ve read the book, which do you think best represents it?

Image #1

Image #2

She Who Comes Forth cover image 2019 reduced

#1 or #2? Or neither? Answers in Comments, please.

92 comments

  1. Audrey, these are both terrific and I’ve been swishing between them! In the end I think the first one stands out most and is most memorable for me. Love the gold, its exotic atmosphere and image of the woman. Good luck with making a decision but a good place to be … with two superb options! πŸ˜€

    Liked by 2 people

  2. You’re asking the the wrong person to decide on a cover image, as I have all kinds of trouble choosing my own. Even when I do decide, I’m likely to change it again later.
    I like both of these, but the second one does seem a little more mysterious…
    Hope this helps…

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Option 2 looks more like a cover in the genre.

    If you do go with option 1, I’d change/rebalance the female figure in the middle: it took me a while to realise it had detail rather than being a silhouette so potential readers (who don’t tend to spend time pondering details) could well parse it as a blob and skim on to another book.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Dave. Actually, that figure is a silhouette, but I had the idea (which I now think was a mistake) to add a barely-visible face. I think the remaining detail is actually parts of the pillar image showing through. Quite a few people prefer #1, so I may try tweaking it up a bit.

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  4. I prefer Number 2 Audrey – but recommend you rebalance it to be lighter and sharper so the face and hieroglyphics are more evident.
    A trick used by cover designers to determine impact and legibility, is to copy and resize it smaller (ONLY RESIZE THE COPY – NOT THE ORIGINAL) to how it would look in an Amazon / B&N / Smashwords display πŸ€—

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Chris, and my apologies for not responding sooner. Your comment wound up in the spam bucket for some reason. I don’t check it often enough, I guess. Canva lets the user zoom designs up and down to as small as 10%, which is about the same as thumbnails at ebook stores. You’re right–the image in #2 does get hard to see at that size, while the title jumps out. That was actually what I intended, having seen similar images using close-up portraits as background. For a number of reasons, I decided to stay with #1, but it was interesting to read everyone’s comments and think about them. Thanks for your thoughts, and again, I’m sorry I did not see them at the time.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. I think no.2 is mysterious and intriguing. It draws me in and I want to know more.
    I find no 1 is visually confusing because the figue is as strong as the writing. If youmade the fure softer and less dominantthe title woukd stand out more.

    Liked by 1 person

            1. For a few years now, I’ve been messing around designing images for blog posts and even cover images for some of my stories and this novel. I know my images aren’t as good as those by professional graphic designers (like those for my 4-book series), but it’s a challenge to see what I can do myself.

              Liked by 1 person

  6. I’ve read it and think the second image with the Egyptian-like eye makeup reflects the story better. I also like the model’s neutral lips and pale facial makeup which make her look like stone.

    However, I like the text and the two little snakes on the first image and especially the background.

    And I hesitate to pick the second image because the hair is very contemporary.

    (Oh goodness, I’m not helping much, am I?)

    If the model in the second image had a neutral hair design, and if she were plucked from the second cover and placed on the background of the first cover, with the first cover’s text, that’s the cover I’d choose!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You know, Priscilla, that’s pretty much the thought process I’ve been going through. I was delighted to find that face image because the extreme eye makeup said both “ancient Egypt” and “1960s.” My main character is blonde so that seemed OK, but that restricts the image to the mc rather than the mysterious Egyptian female entity (you know what I mean, having read the book). The silhouette in #1 could be either of them, and like you I’m fond of those cobras and the fonts I used in #1. I’ll have to do more fiddling and mulling on this one!

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    1. Thanks, Carl. The main character of the book is a blonde American, so the image seemed to suit her. I liked the eye makeup and the little squiggles painted on the face, that reminded me of hieroglyphs. But overall, #1 probably says “Egypt” more than #2.

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    1. Haha, that makeup is pretty extreme. I thought it evoked the eye treatment seen in Egyptian art, though, and the hieroglyph-like squiggles on the face seemed apt too. But #1 has the feel of heat and magnificence one associates with ancient Egypt. (It’s shows a couple of the huge pillars at Karnak, which actually appears in the story). Thanks for your viewpoint, Diana!

      Liked by 1 person

  7. I vote for #1. The visual image even without the text says “someone is emerging” and implies “Egypt” and paranormal – dovetailing nicely with the text. The second cover image says “steamy romance” to me and feels incongruent with the text.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Becky, for a thoughtful comment. I’ve noticed quite a few cover images lately with close-ups and liked this one because it seemed to suit the setting. You may be right about the font sending a sci-fi message; I hadn’t thought of that.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. I preferred number 2 – it has a more modern feel and seems more intriguing. The only issue with using text or symbols as decoration is that it is always good to know their meaning. I worked for a company who once printed Japanese characters on a wallpaper design without realising that the words had been taken from the ingredients list on a bottle of shampoo or similar. The vast majority of customers would have been unaware, but still…

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Good point! Those hieroglyphs on the side in #2 were snipped from an image of a Book of the Dead papyrus. I have no idea what they might say, but I’m sure there are people who could read them. Funny about the shampoo bottle; I can see how that would happen, though. Thanks for your input, Susan!

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  9. Both covers look great! By a slim margin I prefer No. 2. To me it has a more contemporary feel, the focus on the face (and the treatment of it) conceptually highlights what the title promises in ways that the first doesn’t – it’s more literal – and from the design perspective the font is more uniform. Gets the imagination working. Hope that’s useful. Cover design is always something of an art (as it were). As always, all best wishes for every success with this book!

    Liked by 1 person

  10. That first one is the same one that on the book now, right? I much prefer it over no.2. To me the second one just looks like a busy blur – you have to peer at it to figure out what it is. In the first, you get the impression of a woman moving, with emphasis on the temple columns where France played Eudora, and the intriguing note of the cobras. Just right. (I’m working on my review of this book.)

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  11. I generally like #2 better overall, although I do agree with the comments that the person looks a bit too contemporary–but that can be excused because I interpret it as the figure rather late in the story after (I’m trying to be careful about spoilers here) certain events may have occurred that could be seen as outside of the linear timeline. As such, having them look “out of place” may be appropriate.

    The one problem I do have with #2 are the fonts. They are fine fonts, but too sleek and modern-looking for me. I don’t know if you have a choice, but if so, I’d say a serif font would be better. Serif fonts look more archaic to me, and I think that would help capture the mood a bit better.

    But that said, even if it’s strictly a take it or leave it proposition, I’d pick #2. Hope that is helpful!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks for your comments on this, Berthold. I must admit, I like the fonts on #1 too. I’m not sure they would work with the image in #2, though. I was aiming for a look I’ve seen in quite a few books lately, where bare-bones, sans serif fonts are prominent. I was also thinking of the “modern” look for furniture and other items that was popular in 1962. The font is called “Glacial Indifference,” by the way; maybe that influenced me too.

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  12. Wow. Echoing what others have said – two really good ones! No wonder you’re waffling. They both have a lot going for them. My first gut reaction was number 1. As I look more closely I could easily vote for either one, but I think the first might stand out more on a crowded book shelf. Good luck.

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  13. I haven’t read the book so, from a purely ‘catch my attention’ stance the second one has both ‘Egyptian’ and ’60’s’ elements to it. the images are a bit dark though, and the font could be a bit more complex … but other that those two quibbles, it’s my choice. πŸ™‚

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  14. Late again! Sorry about that.
    I like image #1. The title and the image compliment, there is an atmosphere of ‘she’ walking out from ‘somewhere’, the walk is one projecting confidence and the idea ‘she’ is a being some formidable subtle power. Also Silhouette by the lack facial detail displays a very evocative image of mystery

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  15. My vote goes to #2. It looks more up to date as a cover, in my opinion, thought I am not a graphic artist. However, I might suggest trying the new text on the old cover, since I am not fond of the mixed regular/italic/all caps/all lower case text on that cover. And well, it never hurts to give a new cover a try.

    Liked by 1 person

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