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Dejavu book covers

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Mythica
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Post by Mythica » Tue February 4th, 2014, 9:14 pm

[quote=""DianeL""]Surely it can be done, and I admit my prejudice is irrelevant to good (and/or successful) cover design. For me, if I see a movie, I've entered into an agreement to put up with whatever casting and production design a director chooses - but I don't agree to casting and production design when I am reading. Photography impinges upon my mental and intellectual world-building, which is far more important to me in the experience of reading than simply watching a film.

It doesn't help that I cannot recall ever seeing it done well. Honestly, based on most of the covers we show here, I haven't even seen it done in a way that wasn't irritatingly distracting - all the overly "broken down doll" modeling poses which are wildly out of place - all the pneumatic, plastic models - all the anachronistic costuming choices and so on ...

Most of the cover photography I see (and, again, this thread exemplifies this) seems NOT to be done for a specific novel. It's some pretty model, a period or vaguely period dress, several rolls of film, and sell it all to a stock image company. Too many images seem chosen out of a catalogue, not designed specifically for one work. As we can see, it all becomes plug-and-play - and, after a while, it all looks seen-this-before.[/quote]

I don't disagree with any of that but frankly, I don't think this thread is the best example of good cover design. Most of the books posted here are indie books using stock photography and I agree, it doesn't look great. But I do think there are plenty of good historical covers using photography and this is why I say when it's done well, whether it's a photograph or painting, it works.

Here's two just off the top of my head which use photography and I think work very well:

Image Image

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emr
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Post by emr » Tue February 4th, 2014, 10:22 pm

Well, that second cover is a huge déjà vu. hmmmm
"So many books, so little time."
— Frank Zappa

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MLE (Emily Cotton)
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Post by MLE (Emily Cotton) » Tue February 4th, 2014, 10:30 pm

It's been posted before. Although, as Pat recently remarked, "There's no shadow, and no crown." Which is why the new UK cover tickled her fancy so much--all black background against a not-terribly-wrong-for-the-period (note I didn't say accurate) crown.

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Nefret
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Post by Nefret » Wed February 5th, 2014, 2:38 am

The Lionheart cover makes me want to watch a movie version of that book.
Into battle we ride with Gods by our side
We are strong and not afraid to die
We have an urge to kill and our lust for blood has to be fulfilled
WE´LL FIGHT TILL THE END! And send our enemies straight to Hell!
- "Into Battle"
{Ensiferum}

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Madeleine
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Post by Madeleine » Wed February 5th, 2014, 11:49 am

[quote=""Nefret""]The Lionheart cover makes me want to watch a movie version of that book.[/quote]

I think he looks like Clive Owen.
Currently reading: "The Night Hawks" by Elly Griffiths

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Nefret
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Post by Nefret » Wed February 5th, 2014, 4:26 pm

[quote=""Madeleine""]I think he looks like Clive Owen.[/quote]

Yeah, he kinda does. I like the chainmail too.
Into battle we ride with Gods by our side
We are strong and not afraid to die
We have an urge to kill and our lust for blood has to be fulfilled
WE´LL FIGHT TILL THE END! And send our enemies straight to Hell!
- "Into Battle"
{Ensiferum}

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EC2
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Post by EC2 » Wed February 5th, 2014, 5:14 pm

Not that keen on either and they're not historically accurate. Richard I had red hair. The plate mail on the shoulders is the wrong dateline by a couple of hundred years, as is the velvet look on the surcoat and the baggy long sleeves on the mail shirt and the huge spread of the coif are re-enactorism disasters and wrong too.

The dress on the woman is reminiscent of Tudor, no way 11thC. The back lacing is wrong and the belt is wrong. Where's her wimple? That arch she is walking towards is several hundred years out of date too.

I add that the ones I write are not portrayed historically accurately either. I've tried, and that's all you can do.
Les proz e les vassals
Souvent entre piez de chevals
Kar ja li coard n’I chasront

'The Brave and the valiant
Are always to be found between the hooves of horses
For never will cowards fall down there.'

Histoire de Guillaume le Mareschal

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Mythica
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Post by Mythica » Thu February 6th, 2014, 3:43 am

I wasn't necessarily saying they were historically accurate, just aesthetically well designed.

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EC2
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Post by EC2 » Thu February 6th, 2014, 7:19 pm

Ah, right. Yes, they're decent that way, but I wouldn't get past the costume errors especially the dress (with my nerdy hat on).
Les proz e les vassals
Souvent entre piez de chevals
Kar ja li coard n’I chasront

'The Brave and the valiant
Are always to be found between the hooves of horses
For never will cowards fall down there.'

Histoire de Guillaume le Mareschal

www.elizabethchadwick.com

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Nefret
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Post by Nefret » Thu February 6th, 2014, 7:40 pm

I think that is for the US version. Like we won't notice. Did that model appear on any later period novels?
Into battle we ride with Gods by our side
We are strong and not afraid to die
We have an urge to kill and our lust for blood has to be fulfilled
WE´LL FIGHT TILL THE END! And send our enemies straight to Hell!
- "Into Battle"
{Ensiferum}

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