Picture Book Front Cover - Critique Please

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    Hi everyone.
    This is a front cover for a picture book story about a firefly who is looking for a lost treasure and he thinks of a genious way to find it. Please comment, critique and tell me what you think. Thanks so much! 🌟


  • Hi Judy! First off, I think this looks really precious! I especially love the framing details--the hand drawn texture is really charming.

    I think some of the scale contrast of your design might be throwing the visual rhythm off, though. The text could be shrunk a bit with tighter kerning to give it some room to breathe on either side; the white space can really help visual tempo there. I feel like the firefly might also be a bit large, but if the text gets smaller that might balance out.

    The background behind text/firefly is a little distracting as well. Is it just an abstract pattern? Or are the shapes significant within the story? I would recommend either simplifying it or making it a completely flat single color so that it feels less noisy.

    Looking forward to see how this develops!!

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    Hi @thousandwrecks Great feedback. Brilliant ideas. I see what you mean about the space between the letters. Thanks for pointing that out. There are some tweeks I can make there.

    The back ground pattern is the moon behind the firefire. I will see how I can simplify the pattern. I think that's key when creating front covers. 😊

    Fantastic comments. Thanks again.

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    Thanks @thousandwrecks I made some changes. The kerning is tighter. A little more? The background pattern is gone and I agree everything pops forward and is easier to read. If there are any more details anyone can spot I'd love to know!

  • Oh wow I absolutely adore your border, its so beautiful with all the colours etc and your character is so sweet and your lettering is amazing!
    The two things that stand out to me is the colour of the title, maybe try it in the pink or purple you've used so it really stands out, and perhaps each letter needs to be a bit bigger and closer together. I love what you have already but for a cover I think it needs to be a bit more eyecatching.
    The second thing is the black outline of your character, the black seems a bit jarring to me against all the lovely subtle blues, maybe its just the outline that is a bit too thick or maybe it needs to be a dark blue like the colour scheme you already have?
    Maybe also make the authors name on a lower arch so it flows around with the circle border? If that makes sense.

    Really love this, I can see this standing out on shelves in a book shop!

  • @Judy-Elizabeth-Wilson I think that helps a lot! You could even make the moon that nice cream again, but the flat color works much better. 🙂 I think the kerning on the title could still be a bit tighter.

    I also agree with @hannahmccaffery with regard to your character's lines, especially now seeing it with white splashed in the back--the black outline stands out perhaps more than you want it to. If the lines were the same dark blue that the title text is I think it would be a really lovely soft look, and it might unify all those elements.

    This is coming along so nicely, and I can't wait to see how it finalizes!

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    Thanks @thousandwrecks and @hannahmccaffery Brilliant observations!
    Hannah, I tried some different colours for the title, in the end this redder pink looks best. Light pink looked amazing however thinking about how parents choose books I thought they might thinkthis story was geared towards girls, both characters are boys. I took the jewels out of the holes in the letters to simplify. Also tightened the kerning and curvedthe author name to the shape of the border.

    What do you think about the new blue line of the firefly. I think it looks fantastic and way better than hard black.

    I added some soft clouds and some details into the jungle border like little flowers and some textures.

    On the moon I drew on some texture in blue and I think this can be pushed further.

    What do you think now? 🙂

    Thanks so much!


  • This is so beautiful! Changing the colour of the outline of your character has changed it wonderfully and it works really well 🙂
    I love the colour you've chosen for the title, to me that stands out so much more now, I know what you mean about not wanting it to be solely aimed at girls, but I'm assuming this is aimed at quite young early readers? If so then the brighter the colours the better, even if they are pinks 🙂 Plus you also have a lot of blue to aim at young boys too, so you've balanced it out nicely!

    A great piece for your portfolio yay!

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    Just a beautiful design, but I LOVED your first version-sorry, other than leaving a little more space around the fonts and the edge of the moon (breathing room) I loved the first one especially the rainbow coloring in the moon- Just my opinion though...…..

  • @Judy-Elizabeth-Wilson This is SO CUTE, gosh. I love how it's developing!! I'd go ahead and make the eyes/mouth lines blue as well if you're gonna go with blue lines everywhere else, but really that's up to you. This is precious and I think it's super-sweet. The moon looks lovely as well!!! the texture makes it feel so tangible. Lovely work!

  • @Judy-Elizabeth-Wilson said in Picture Book Front Cover - Critique Please:

    Please comment, critique and tell me what you think. Thanks so much! 🌟

    Words that popped onto my head when I first looked at it ... Mystery and Happiness 🙂

    I really like it, has a sort of Yoshi's Island vibe to it, like it's a world you could go into and start taking bites out of the scenery lol Tasty looking.

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    @lmrush Hi Lisa, thanks for your comment. I still like the first one and with the kerning tightened I'm going to put them side by side and choose later today. ✨

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    @Sophie-Lawson Hi Sophie. What a beautiful comment. 🙂 Thank you! The story has an element of mystery and there is certainly a happy ending. 🌈 :white_medium_star:

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    @Judy-Elizabeth-Wilson I kind of liked the background colors and the patterns in the letters in your first one. It fits your style. I do see where the letters could be a bit closer together though.

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    @Marsha-Kay-Ottum-Owen Thanks Marsha. The letters are closer together now and it does look better.
    Thanks for everyones feedback. Which would you choose from these 3 covers?

  • @Judy-Elizabeth-Wilson This looks great! Nice edits! I like the dark blue letters with the jewel fillings.

  • @Judy-Elizabeth-Wilson I really like #1 up close but when I zoom out, #2 calls me more (I wish I could explain why).

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    @BichonBistro Thank you. I think it's the pink text that sings. I have made a pink text with jewels to see how it looks.
    The blue text looks more dominant and clear though.


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    @Adriana-Bergstrom Thank you. I Adriana. I'm drawn to the blue too. It was worth to experiment though. You never know what cool surprises you'll find if you don't try.

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    @Judy-Elizabeth-Wilson I still like number 1 but the pink text pops out more. I wonder what would happen if there was a very thin outline of pink around the letters in number 1? Would they pop more from a distance?

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