Creating cover art and title cards


#1

I’ve been making my own covers for a while and I think it’s time to step my game up. I started off using Windows Paint yikes, I graduated to Canva for a little more of a polished look, but Canva doesn’t have many complex features and capabilities. Now I’m looking to use GIMP but there’s a huge learning curve involved.

What websites and/or editing programs do you use to make your cover art? I’m curious to know how people are doing theirs and if anyone has recommendations on which programs are most effective.


Help finding a thread
#2

When I’m not getting them through my artist I tend to use a mixture of Pixlr & Canva! :slight_smile:


#3

Thought I’d throw my suggestion in…

Krita

It’s free to download, and it comes with a great tutorial and resources. It’s completely crowd sourced and a very close parallel to Photoshop.

Hope this helps. :slight_smile:


#4

I hadn’t heard of Krita before, thanks for the rec. I’ll check that out!


#5

@April.H Thanks for the tip about Pixlr, I haven’t tried it yet so I’ll add that to my list. I’m so glad you replied because I know you’ve commissioned art before and I have a question about that as well, I just didn’t want the OP to get too crowded with questions. Where did you find the artist you work with?


#6

I’m just a simple gal. I use picsart :joy:


#7

@Scotti Anytime! Pixlr saves my life more than I’d like admit! :see_no_evil: - I actually found her on Instagram! I was looking through the #digitalart I just kept scrolling until I found work that stood out to me! Aha, I got super lucky with that! - You can also find artists on Sketchmob too! :slight_smile:


#8

I was using Pixlr (on my computer) but I now use my iPad and use Superimpose X (it’s MUCH better than the original Superimpose. Neither version is free). You can basically do anything! Shadows, layers, filters etc. I also find it the easiest app for erasing backgrounds. When I use Pixlr, I’m always left with a jagged white (or blue/whatever colour the background was) line around the character. I use Phonto for my fonts. I’m no cover artist, but I like to do my own covers anyway. :slight_smile:


#9

@amepisode nothing wrong with that! Especially considering my very first cover was made in Windows Paint. I still cringe about it shudders :no_mouth:


#10

@EliseC this is really awesome advice! Thank you! I’m definitely writing all these suggestions and recommendations from everyone down.


#11

Mine was a screenshot complete with the little “…” and door icons and then I slapped some text on it :smirk: :see_no_evil:


#12

Guess we all gotta start somewhere @Scotti :laughing:


#13

Hi @Scotti !

I use Adobe Photoshop – GIMP is very similar.

You ask which programs are most ‘effective’ – by far Photoshop, or anything like it (GIMP, Krita, etc) is the way to go.

It’s a bit daunting at the start, like going from driving a Kia to a Rocketship– except this rocketship comes with infinite video tutorials. It’ll take you a little bit of time, but once you’ve got the swing of things you’ll be amazed at the flexibility a more complex program like GIMP offers you.

Let us know what you end up choosing in the end! :smiley:

(Edited to add: I do cringe when I have to pay for stuff, but Adobe offer some very affordable subscriptions for their desktop apps, especially if you are a student. You can also buy Adobe Draw and/or Adobe Sketch if you have an ipad/tablet– they are really affordable ($10 from memory?) and they have some AWESOME features + heaps of flexibility, particularly if you’re fond of using a stylus.)


#14

Thanks @TuesdayCross! I used GIMP to make the cover for my star power entry and I think it came out pretty well. I haven’t gotten into the vast majority of the really advanced features though, so I know I have a lot to learn.

That rocketship analogy is so on point. It truly is a huge leap but if I want better quality I have to be willing to put in the work. Since I’ve found free software I’m not sure if I’ll invest in Photoshop but only time will tell. I’ll keep the thread updated as I progress and share my thoughts on the recommendations I’ve received :grin:


#15

I’m cheap, so Pixlr and Canva are my best friends! LOL


#16

@theepyawards lol I literally use adobe illustrator and paint.net


#17

I am in <3 with https://pixlr.com/editor/ . Def not as feature rich as Photoshop but does the trick for my graphic needs :smile:


#18

I’m total crap at making covers but I have made a few things that are acceptable to me. I do them all on my phone because before I found these apps I was also trying to use MS paint to make things! Mostly I use a combination of Pixlr, PicsArt and Eraser. Super easy but not quite professional for someone with high expectations. I tried to figure GIMP out but it was far too steep a learning curve.

I also commissioned art and I found the artist on Sketchmob. Highly recommend that.


#19

The learning curve for GIMP is massive, not gonna lie. I still haven’t even come close to mastering it. I use a bunch of the online forums and tutorials while I’m making everything, so that helps tremendously. I’ve been using GIMP for the past couple of days to make some new cover art and it’s definitely difficult. I’ll say the end result is worth it though because this new cover is probably the best I’ve ever done; albeit quite a few hours were spent on it between GIMP and Canva (a lot of image compression as well; though I didn’t mind too much because everything I used was extremely high res).

I’ve heard nothing but great things about Sketchmob so I’ll certainly give it a shot if I need to commission art in the future!


#20

I think part of my issue was that I didn’t have a vision on what I wanted accomplished. I just wanted to learn it and that flopped. I have no background in drawing at all so it’s like learning to draw as well :joy:

And Sketchmob is great because your money isn’t being handed over without assurances. But ‘great’ art like the one that’s currently my profile picture is not cheap :sweat_smile: