Monday, September 20, 2010

Cover Design (Part 4 of 5)

I was pretty torn given the last few emails.  Either way I was out of luck and trying make sense into all of it because either way I was going to lose.  To justify the service, I decided that as long as I get three somewhat tollerable concepts that would at least complete what the package description was.  I sent them an email:
[Rep] -

Below and attached are my notes for the cover - please let me know if there are any questions.  I enjoy the back copy and am currently making slight changes to it and will have that back to you shortly.  I will also have my headshot, illustrator bio, and additional flap/back cover information soon.
Thank you,

Attached is a file called 'cover'  This contains my original ideas that I already sent.  I have also included additional notes: together, this is a lot of information so please let me know if there are any questions.
Again, I want to stress that all my concerns with the existing concepts is that they look too amateur, like too many self-published POD books riddled with design red flags. (it is not that they don't fit my instructions - I didn't say I wanted anything specific - I just want new, different ideas done well and not just the title in a tacky font in the middle of the page).  I am excited to make a decision between multiple covers options that I like.
I look forward to seeing another attempt at this. 

The attached files to this email were materials I had already sent them, 90% of which was ignored thus far.  Hopefully now they would get me something not embarassing. Five days later I received the new concepts:
Good Afternoon David,
Attached please find a low-res PDF of Cover Comps 8-11 for your consideration. Numbers 9 and 10 are the same except for the color used for your name. Please let us know your thoughts.
Thank you and enjoy the day,
My blood began to boil yet again.  Of the four concepts attached, only one was new.  And GREENBERG!?  Are they kidding me?  What an insult on all levels.  Not only did the designer make the same terrible mistake, but the REP failed to even notice, that is, if the proofs were even looked at before sending to me. 
So what else is there to say?  Three of the concepts were not new, with only minor changes implemented and therefore, nearly useless. And the new "greenberg" design looks like a cheap, McDonald's flyer (if made by an 8-year-old).  What was the point in sending me a new concept of things already sent to me?  What was all this talk about marketability?  Is there no conceptual aspects to design in their minds? Like changing the color of the background would change my thought on any previous concepts? (especially when changed from girly pruple to blood red).
I was at a loss as to what to do.  On one hand, I couldn't use anything they gave me.  I didn't even have three options to choose from as pathetic of a hope that was.  Everything was terrible.  Thinking logically, my options were simple: 1 - go with them and have an absolutely horrid book jacket, or 2 - do it myself and make sure it's good, or 3 - hire someone else.  Going with them was suicide and hiring someone else would be way too much money - I had to do this myself, which wasn't a bad idea.  I am an artist - I do have a BFA.  I know photoshop and have regularly made graphics for a variety of projects.  And I have a wide variety of resources for help and support.
In my next email to [book cover design company] with multiple updates, I included the following:
"I will be designing the cover.  I will create a near-complete layered TIFF with the design to be used for you guys to add layout/information to the back/spine."  
And that was that.  I would create the jacket myself and send to them for any additional tweaks and that would be that.  What a waste of my time and money.

1 comment:

  1. Dude, you're a looney.

    I looked at the original images you sent over, and the image of the t-shirt you created, and I can't see what you're hung up about. Hand-drawn type, bold colored background, image of the little guy ... what's left? You've already defined the look of the cover - there IS NO concept - merely pulling design elements from a variety of sources and combining them. This is not the fault of 1106Design - you've already demonstrated that any thinking outside of these rather rigid parameters will be punished with rudeness (which, by the way, many would regard as a display of low self esteem).

    So what do you expect? Risk taking? Bold new ideas? I doubt that your style of communication would bring out ANY kind of willingness in someone, let alone unbridled creativity.

    Lets look at it another way. They've done this a thousand times, successfully, and you've done this ... never? I wonder if there might be the possibility, I'm going out on a limb here, I know, but stay with me ... I wonder if there might be the possibility that the problem lies with ... wait for it ... YOU.