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Cover Design – Tales from the Colony

Tales from the Colony is a flash fiction collection about a group of people who live on an interstellar colony ship en route to a new world.  You get bits and pieces of what happened to the OG Earth too, but the story focuses on the people living out there…somewhere.  Space.

When I started on the first draft, pickings of creative commons photos were slim at best.  Given the nature of the story, I had basically two options…

  • Space
  • NASA Photos
  • Lego Ships

4915201327_3bcfaec94e_oGranted, Lego ships weren’t really an option, but I did find a few that would have otherwise served as excellent images if they weren’t Lego to begin with.  Luckily, I happened upon a NASA publication on a NASA website here.  NASA is all public domain and this was part of a publication.  Credit goes to NASA Ames Research Center.

TftC Cover v1Cover design for this one went quicker than with other images.  I started with the basic image and cropped it.  Then, I did a bit of a blue shift and tweaked that until I was satisfied.  The debris had to do for the text, so I took an eraser tool to the parts in the open ring space and also blotted out the black space as well.  I wasn’t satisfied with the blue shift after that.  Generally, when that happens, I add another layer, so I did and for a while it looked better.

After settling on the colors for the upper layers, I did two things from here.

TftC Cover v2First, I added text and for this method, I wanted to make use of the space station’s circular shape.  The text was positioned to sort of hug the edges of the station and that seemed to work well enough.

4965079968_485df65257_oSecond, I found a great image of the milky way that I dropped in for the background.  Normally, I don’t condone this, but since the background was mostly black and space, it worked well.  I didn’t have to worry about odd lighting or black outlines from the cover image.  I did a few levels tweaks to the background and the station and I changed the impact of the colors for the station and then I had the cover that exists in the present.

TftC Cover v3

TftC Cover v3

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