• SVS Team SVS Instructor Pro SVS OG

    Hi guys, sorry for the late judging as usual. It's tax time so stuff gets kinda crazy up in here in april. Hope all of you got through the tax season ok!

    This book covers that were turned in really impressed me. I didn't know what to expect with the type or how you would handle this project. Of course they looked amazing. I should be used to that by now!

    Let's dive in:
    1st place: Jenny Wine @jennymwine
    OK, this is so freaking good I could probably talk about it forever. The things Jenny did right? EVERYTHING! Limited color that grabs your attention? CHECK! Skull carved out of other shapes implying a location? CHECK! Characters in strong silhouette? CHECK! Jenny gets nothing but praise from me on this one. Pro level for sure!

    2nd Place: Dima Eichhorn
    For a book cover to do well it needs to have a very strong feeling to it. It needs to convey so many things at once to someone who sees it from across the bookstore. Dima's wonderful rendition of Pippi Longstocking hits all the right notes. It just has that "X" factor that makes it seem just perfect for the subject matter. It's energetic and messy in the way kid's are. Nailed it!

    3rd Place: Niki Stage @nikstage
    Niki's wonderful version of Little Red is something you guys should really look at. By turning the shape of the forest into a menacing wolf shape, the art is doing two things at once. Jaime and I talk about this solution in the Book Cover class. It offers great economy and makes the artist look very smart! Nice type here too Niki! : )


    Honorable mentions (in random order):

    Alicia Sober
    I love seeing how Alicia played with the open wardrobe and the snow spilling out into the room. Love that! Strong shapes and nice design make this cover stand out. The type placement on the open wardrobe door might need some adjustment. That part doesn't seem to work just yet. Maybe pull back on the scene a bit and give yourself some room to work with at the top or bottom.

    Irwan Burger @irwan
    Great design and limited palette. I think more could be done with the focal point which is where the wolf is blowing. We need a payoff there. Maybe the smoke is shaped like pigs? I think this one is close. Maybe just figure out that focal point and it will be done.


    Aleksey Nisenboym @Aleksey
    Aleksey's cool woodcut style perfectly compliments his nice sense of design on this cover. Very nice cover from close up and would also work well from across the room. The only touch up needed is the character of the frog. it's tough to tell how we are supposed to feel about him and what he is thinking. His style seems a little different than the rest of the piece too.


    Shannon Bergin @ShannonB
    Shannon's Coraline cover is sweet! The choice to stay in grey scale is a good call and adds to the drama nicely. This one is working qutie well as is, but maybe we can sneak some more interesting symbolism in there. Look to the negative spaces in between the fingers, etc. That is how you can take a very good cover like this and make it great.


    I really like the style of this one! Very cool! BUT, the style is also why I didn't pick it for the top 3. You may be very confused now. Let me explain. A book cover has to give the feeling of the written material. Lord of the flies is almost a horror story. It's gritty and intense. I felt like this cover needs to hit more of that note to really sell it. But as an illustration, I love this style. It would work for many YA covers maybe better than it does for Lord of the Flies.


    Elizabeth Hoffman @Squirrelsize
    This is so good and I really love it. The only reason this one didn't win is that it didn't give me a new take on the subject matter. But it updated a classic nicely. I would definitely keep this in your portfolio. The style is modern and is being sought after by many art directors. Very appealing image!


    Jessica Clark
    Jessica's Alice cover is really nice! Look at all that beautifully painted imagery! Nice detail and drawing skill for sure! The only suggestion I have is try to highlight a focal point a little more. Right now everything is almost the same value which can make it seem a little muddy. Think about bringing some shapes forward and pushing others back in space. Think about what order you want the reader to notice all the things in the image.

    Jason Rodriguez
    This is just awesome and could have been in the top three. I wish I could just keep giving a bunch of 1st place finishes! I don't have any adjustments I'd make. The mark making is great and the design is very controlled with detail and value. Lovely image.

    Johanna Kim @Johanna-Kim
    Johanna is a pro at these contests now and has placed in every one she enters it seems. Let's go ahead and add this one to the list. Johanna is killing it and I am a big fan! The only thing here is that the character seems a little muddy in there. Is there a way to clean him up so he reads a little easier?

    That will do it for now. You guys did fantastic and I am constantly impressed by the images you turn in. I also love seeing the WIP on the forum here! keep it up!

    If you guys didn't see, there will be some changes coming in May. From that contest on, only SVS subscribers can win or place and I will be doing video critiques for that (also only available to svs subscribers). Cool stuff coming soon!

    See ya!

  • Oh man I would really like to take that book cover class. So glad I got an honorable mention, thanks so much for your feedback @Lee-White. I’ve been reading up on the Golden Age of illustration so I’m glad that the vibe of the style is woodcut. Gonna brush up on my character design choices. Thanks again and congrats to all the people that won this was really fun to do.

  • Wow.. I wasn’t expecting such good submissions. Sorry, ‘good’ is a major understatement - these were fantastic! I found myself looking at each one, saying “whoa”, “wow”, “crazy”, etc lol. Big ups to all the artists behind these entries!

  • Wooooow!! These are seriously fantastic covers- great job to everyone. Covers are such a specific challenge, and you all brought a lot of skill and imagination to your designs. I can't wait to see what comes next!

  • SVS OG

    This seems like a particularly strong month! Great work, guys!!! Can't wait to take the book cover class, as well.

  • SVS OG

    @jennymwine @dima eichhorn @nikstage Alicia Sober @irwan @aleksey @shannonb Claudi @squirlsize Jessica Clark Micheal ende @Johanna-Kim the entries are all amazing! Great work everyone!

  • @Lee-White Oh, I can't believe I made a second place.😲 Thank you all. And also want to thank all other artist in this forum, they are so nice and inspiring. It is so amazing community. I had only one month of subscription and I am so happy that will be able to see the more videos and lessons. I am so HAPPY, HAPPY, HAPPY. Also, I am logged in with two different emails, (one for the forum and one for the school)so let me know if is needed to change one of them. I wish you one wonderful day, because mine sure is wonderful now.

  • SVS OG

    Congrats to the winners, you all deserve the recognition for your wonderful work! I'm just in awe of you, and of all the talented artists on this forum.

  • @Dima-Eichhorn I loved that cover from the moment I saw it! Congrats! So glad you placed!

  • @Dima-Eichhorn so excited for you! I am in love with this illustration ❤

  • Congratulations to all the book cover artist here! What an amazing talent. Thank you critiquing my Lord of the Flies submission as well! You are sooo right, it does not convey the horror aspect at all! Still thinking about the book cover design class ... would be thrilled to learn more about this. Who made the decision already and is in?

  • SVS OG

    You're all amazing! love seeing what you've all done.

  • Amazing work everyone!

  • Great job everyone! There are so many skilled artists in here! I can’ believe I received an honorable mention on one of my first entries!
    And thank you @Lee-White for the feedback on my piece! You are very right!

  • Great work as usual. Congrats to all who finished! On to the next one. 😀

  • congrats to everyone! Really loved following along on this 🙂

  • @Lee-White Thank you very much for the Feedback. The simple Information paying attention to focal point and "payoff" is exactly what I needed. I never had such specific things on my radar, I was always making my illustrations intuitive. These two cues are a real "tool set" which will enhance my future work. Again thank you very much.

  • Oh wow thank you so much for the feedback @Lee-White it's really helpful! Congratulations to everyone who won or was mentioned, the work is really wonderful 😃

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