A Creative College Project

Last week, one of my college classes ended. (Yay for more writing time!) It was an accelerated graphic design class I was taking with my brother, and, while it had its ups and downs, our final project was pretty awesome. πŸ˜€

Earlier on in the semester, our professor informed us we would get to make a full-size movie poster, book cover, or album cover for a well-known work as our final project and present it on paper. It sounded both exciting and daunting since we hadn’t learned anything yet.

We learned the ins and outs of a computer program, color theory, some composition, and how to find royalty free images among many other things. When it was time to start our final projects, I chose to make a fan cover for The Giver by Lois Lowry. (It’s a really good fantasy/dystopian book. Just don’t judge it on the basis of its movie and be sure to skip chapter five. πŸ˜€ )

I had a vague concept of what I wanted in mind, so I searched for the royalty-free images I expected to need.


I had two other possible pictures picked out, but I liked the age and depth of expression on this one. So, I present to thee–Jonas!

I set up the dimensions (off handy-dandy Amazon since I wanted them to match a real book), imported my model images, and set to work drawing.

Screen Shot 2017-10-05 at 3.38.09 PM copy

Here’s a picture of it in progress. And yes, that is a Mac. I started the semester soooΒ clumsy on those, but I’ve gained a little more skill and confidence thanks to experience and excessive Googling. πŸ˜€

As you can see, dear Jonas’ face was reduced to the middle third, and I drew it with some very awesome tools. Also, I painted his eyes blue, which I’ll explainΒ more later…

We don’t have Macs at home, so I spent many hours in the school library fiddling with tiny digital brush strokes. That really wasn’t any problem though since I had great, inspiring music to keep me company. πŸ˜€ Although this song is actually from the movie, I love it to pieces, and it perfectly sums up the entire atmosphere of the book for me. πŸ˜‰

Getting our final projects designed on the computer was half the battle. Printing it was the Armageddon. Long story short, we tried four different printers and finally, miraculously, and very much relieved-ly printed them late at night just minutes before Costco closed. God really pulled some strings for us and reminded us how much He was in control of everything. I’m very grateful it turned out. πŸ˜‰

I printed two copies just in case I cut one wrong. (Our rotary cutter, usually used for quilting, came quite in handy!) Both turned out, so I followed my brother’s example and mocked it up on a real book. Just look at this… ❀

The Giver fan cover

Here’s the finished front cover!! πŸ˜€ ❀ I went with a minimalistic black and white cover with a soft, paint-y look. I love the “clean” look, and the black and white color scheme is a HUGE element of the book. Also, the eye color is another important element, but you have to read the book to figure it out. πŸ˜€ You can’t see it very well in this picture, but there’s a single tear sliding down his cheek.

The Giver back cover

And the back cover!! πŸ˜€ I’m very proud of how that apple turned out. *pats self on back* The margins turned out a little goofy because of how we folded it, but that’s okay.

The Giver spine

I enjoyed choosing meaningful elements to include on the cover, figuring out how to use all the painting tools, and seeing the finished product. And I’m still in awe of how God worked out the printing. πŸ˜‰

Have you ever designed a book cover or something else? What is your favorite program to use?


30 thoughts on “A Creative College Project

  1. The Giver!!!!

    That book is so good! There is three more in the series! *squeals*

    They are a little iffy though……………. 😦

    That looks really cool, Kate!

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Messenger is my favorite! I’m re-reading Son…….. Gathering Blue wasn’t as good as the rest, but I liked it! Maybe I should re-read them all…… πŸ™‚

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Oh, I love The Giver! It’s one of my favorite books ever. The movie is so good to! I like the movie’s ending better than the book’s though…..I don’t know why, I guess it’s just a bit more satisfying. The books seems to leave a lot to the imagination, which I like, but it’s so cool how he gave everyone’s memories back. And the music! Is there even words? I’ve listened to the soundtrack about a million times now. Lol! Love your cover, the minimal design is really cool. Is that Photoshop you’re using? I had Adobe Creative Cloud last year, and really enjoyed it, but it was SO hard to figure out! Do you have any resources I could check out?
    Sorry for the long comment, xD.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. High five!!! πŸ˜€ I see what you mean. πŸ˜‰ I also liked how the movie had Fiona and Asher play a little bit more of a role instead of just dropping out of the story. (Although there are good reasons for that too…) πŸ˜‰

      Aaaaaaa!! I know!! It’s so gorgeous. I love watching the actual clip where the Giver is playing it and talking. ❀

      Thank you! I used Adobe Illustrator, but my brother used Photoshop somewhat for his. I get what you mean–CC can be sooo confusing sometimes. πŸ˜‰ Prior to this I had used a free software called Gimp, PicMonkey, and Canva. Canva is actually my favorite for doing small work like blog buttons and graphics. πŸ˜‰ If you're looking for resources to help you with CC, I can give the name of my textbook. πŸ˜‰

      Hey, no problem! It was fun. πŸ˜‰

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Totally! CC is very confusing at first–especially because I can’t draw very well with a mouse….*sighs* I’m thinking of investing in a touchscreen laptop, with a pen. But we’ll have to see. My main focus right now is Nano and writing.
        The name of your textbook would be awesome! I can use all the help I can get. Yes, Canva is my favorite to for blog buttons and design. I used to like Picmonkey better, but now they have new settings where you can’t save your pic unless you sign up for a paying plan I think, so that sucks. I used Adobe Illustator as well, but I was better with Photoshop. I’m thinking of getting Adobe sketch or some similair program, cause I really like digital art and manga….xD πŸ™‚

        Liked by 2 people

      2. Oh, yeah! Drawing with a mouse is crazy sometimes. πŸ˜‰ That would solve it!

        Yay for NaNo!! πŸ˜€

        My textbook is called Digital Foundations by Xtine Burrough and Michael Mandiberg. Just a heads up that I can’t vouch for the entire thing since we only used the first few chapters of it. πŸ˜‰

        Ugh, I know! Wow, that’s great that you love digital art. πŸ˜‰

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Thanks a bunch! I’ll have to check it out…I’m considering getting into manga, and since I like art so much, I may….(emphasis on MAY)…someday turn my WIP into a manga novel. It would be sooooo awesome.
        Yes, drawing with a mouse is really irritating. I did get a Wacom(i think that’s how it’s spelled) from my aunt who’s a clothing designer for Adidas, but she does some digital design to….and that made it a lot easier. I’m also planning on taking some online classes soon, because I’d really like to become a manga artist or a comic book inker–it’s pretty cool, I just which that comic books weren’t so nasty nowadays. *sighs* I guess I’ll just have to write my own!

        Liked by 2 people

  3. Well done! So, does this mean you are going to design the cover for your next story? πŸ™‚ While I love the new ideas and freedom I have when someone else designs my covers for me, there’s just something extra satisfying about designing the covers yourself.

    I use Photoshop for all my graphics and cover designs. And yes, I have designed a few book covers. Let’s see, I’ve done 9 full covers and 5 back covers. It gets addicting. πŸ˜‰ Let me know when you start designing covers for others. πŸ˜€

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks, Rebekah! Oh, I don’t know! I really like doing it, but I don’t have a story that would fit this medium right now… πŸ˜‰

      Wow, that’s so great! It’s almost like putting the sprinkles on cake, you know? πŸ˜€

      Liked by 1 person

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