Final Rendered Typography (Top) Inverted Base Typography (Bottom)
Paperback Design for Book 1
Paperbacks for Book 1-4 (Left) Spine Layout (Right)
The series title is quite direct so I wanted to reenforce it, and also bring out some additional story elements. I designed “Apocalyptic” with an urban spraypainted feeling, signaling the modern, grungy post-apocalyptic setting, while “Pirates” has plenty of swashbuckling energy to reassure readers of the book’s fantasy. There are quite a lot of dragons in the book and so adding some into the type was important to me. Adding a large sea serpent and a winged dragon add some “tha’r be monsters!” flare, and also put a twist on the title.
The cover art has some fantastic rendering and I wanted to help it look its best. I brought out even more depth with some additional shading and lighting on the model and the setting around her. Then enriched some of the colors so it would be eye catching on the web.
I wanted the design of the printed book to feel in universe to a degree. The pirates and main characters use modern boats and yachts rather than old wooden ships so I decided to style the cover as though it were made from the glistening metal panels of a yacht. Keeping with the semi-grungy feel of the type I kept using stencil fonts on the back and decaled up the spine and back with some colorful and fun dragons almost as though the crew had painted them on their pirate yacht. YoHO!
MSE Publishing + Eric Vall