Jennifer Talesfore, winner of the Dracula Re-Covered Books Contest

Jennifer Talesfore, winner of the Dracula Re-Covered Books Contest

Choosing a winner for the Re-Covered Books contest becomes more difficult every time as the talent level continues to rise. Our last redesign contest was for the classic novel Dracula, where I asked potential creators to make something that steered away from the typical cliches, that felt like a new addition to the mythology of Count Dracula.

As I said, there were a ton of great entrants, but the one I was most mesmerized by was the entry above by Jennifer Talesfore. What I love about her design is how stark and graphic it is. She used a theme that was common amongst several of the designs, inverting the A’s in Dracula to represent fangs. Where I think her design differs and veers into brilliant is her treatment of the title. I see it two ways, the first being a hapless victim stuttering the name of Dracula, and the second being the way that Bela Lugosi may have intoned the word Dracula, sounding out certain parts longer than others. It’s funny that it also reads so well, despite looking so nonsensical.

She also did a nice job of presenting a cohesive thought, uniting the front, back and spine nicely. The book is told through a series of anecdotes from different characters, so the quote on the back is quite a nice touch.

Overall her entry feels like the complete package, and for that she deserves to be the winner. A huge thanks to Jennifer for entering, she’ll be receiving a $100 gift card to Amazon. Check back on Wednesday for a special edition of Re-Covered Books and the chance to win something extra special.

Bobby

Bobby Solomon

November 21, 2011 / By

Re-Covered Books: Dracula by Bram Stoker

Re-Covered Books: Dracula by Bram Stoker

Re-Covered Books: Dracula by Bram Stoker

Re-Covered Books: Dracula by Bram Stoker

Re-Covered Books: Dracula by Bram Stoker

I’m a little late in the month for this, but I couldn’t resist doing a themed Re-Covered Book contest for Halloween. So this time around we’re tackling Dracula by Bram Stoker, a classic novel who’s reach has influenced pop culture in so many ways and defined what a modern day vampire was. The book was written back in 1897, and as Wikipedia says, “touches on themes such as the role of women in Victorian culture, sexual conventions, immigration, colonialism, and postcolonialism.” I think this is a great way to look at the book, these themes not necessarily coming across from a pale guy with fangs and a cape.

Your job is to make a super rad cover the portrays those themes without resting upon Hollywood cliches. Perhaps your cover is gruesome? Or maybe you say fuck it all and make the funniest cover ever? It’s up to you, but be sure to steer clear of pre-existing imagery like Bela Lugosi and the such.

The prize for winning, as always, is $100 to Amazon.

RULES

• Please save your images as JPGs no larger than 800px wide at 72 DPI/RGB mode, there’s no height restrictions (within reason). Feel free to play with the dimensions and have fun with what you make. Making a front and back cover with certainly help your chances, but is not required.

• Label your files “Firstname-Lastname-Dracula.jpg”

• Send all entries to [email protected] with the subject “Re-Covered Books: Dracula“. Cut and paste what I wrote there, it’s super easy and it helps me keep track of your entry.

• All entries are due Saturday, November 12, 2011 by Midnight, PST.

If there are any other questions feel free to leave them in the comments. Looking forward to seeing what you come up with and be sure to tell your friends/classmates/pets to participate. Good luck and have fun!

See the entries below.

Continue reading this post…

Bobby Solomon

October 19, 2011 / By

Cory Bujnowicz, the winner of The Outsiders Re-Covered Books Contest

Cory Bujnowicz, the winner of The Outsiders Re-Covered Books Contest

The contest to redesign The Outsider proved to be difficult, or at least that’s how it seemed. The task was a bit difficult, not using any sort of typical imagery that you associate with The Outsiders, i.e. a bunch of guys standing around in leather jackets smoking. Using that kind of imagery seemed too easy to me, so I wanted to see something that was a bit outside the box, something that required some creative thinking while still staying true to the feeling of the book.

Of all the entries, I felt that Cory Bujnowicz’s entru was the best. As Kyle put it so well, it almost feels like something Barbara Kruger would make, completely basic in typography but strong in visual elements. As Cory put in his email, “What punk didn’t paint their nails when they were younger?” The colors are also really interesting to me because they’re so, for a lack of a better term, fucked. Putrid greens mixed fluo pink and baby pink text. It’s feels “edgy” but without trying too hard. It really just brings me into the piece and makes me want to stare at it, to try and figure it out.

Congrats Cory, you did an amazing job, I’ll be sending you $100 to Amazon shortly. Check back next Monday when I announce the next Re-Covered Books contest.

Bobby

Bobby Solomon

October 11, 2011 / By

Re-Covered Books: The Outsiders

Re-Covered Books: The Outsiders

Re-Covered Books: The Outsiders

Re-Covered Books: The Outsiders

Re-Covered Books: The Outsiders

I’m really trying to keep the creativity rolling on the Re-Covered Books contest, and I feel totally pumped by all of the amazing entries from the Jane Eyre competition. This time around we’re taking a different approach, moving away from the Victorian era and into coming-of-age momennt in the 1960s. I’m talking about S. E. Hinton’s The Outsiders.

Amazingly, the book was written by Hinton while she was 15, then published when she was only 16. If you’re not familiar the book is about two rival gangs of kids, the Greasers and the Socs, who hate each other for their differences. If you’d like to read more about the book, you can always check out the Wikipedia page. When you look above, you can see the book covers I was able to dig up, and the generally miserable designs they all have. The problem I have is they’re all cliches, and cliches don’t sell books. So here’s what you should do to win this contest.

I want to test your creative limits, so first I’m going to tell you what no to do. I don’t want to see any images of dudes in leather jackets, silhouettes of bros, or a bunch of tough looking guys hanging out, acting… tough. I want you to figure out a creative way of showing that these kids are Outsiders, that they don’t fit in and they’re treated differently because of it. To give you a great example of what I mean, check out the cover that Mikey Burton did. That is design genius on so many levels.

The Outsiders Cover by Mikey Burton

The prize for winning, as always, is $100 to Amazon.

RULES

• Please save your images as JPGs no larger than 800px wide at 72 DPI/RGB mode, there’s no height restrictions (within reason). Feel free to play with the dimensions and have fun with what you make. Making a front and back cover with certainly help your chances, but is not required.

• Label your files “Firstname-Lastname-Outsiders.jpg”

• Send all entries to [email protected] with the subject “Re-Covered Books: The Outsiders“. Cut and paste what I wrote there, it’s super easy and it helps me keep track of your entry.

• All entries are due Saturday, October 1st, 2011 by Midnight, PST.

If there are any other questions feel free to leave them in the comments. Looking forward to seeing what you come up with and be sure to tell your friends/classmates/pets to participate. Good luck and have fun!

See all the entries below.

Continue reading this post…

Bobby Solomon

September 7, 2011 / By

Sergio Serrano, Winner of Re-Covered Books: ‘Jane Eyre’

Sergio Serrano's Cover for Jane Eyre

I want you to come up with something that’s new and contemporary, something that will grab the attention of a person walking by but that still stays true to the spirit of the book. Don’t do anything retro, a Penguin throwback or anything of the sort. I want to see new, fresh ideas.

Those were the requirements I laid out for the Jane Eyre Re-Covered Contest. In my opinion there’s already enough retro-inspired designs out there, so I wanted to see something new and fresh, bringing a new life to an old story. The contest entries this time around were fantastic. I narrowed down the entries I thought were best, and ended up with nine. NINE! So narrowing that group down to one was not an easy feat. Going over the entries though, there was one that felt like something fresh new, and that was from Sergio Serrano.

Sergio’s entry perfectly nails the idea of contemporary visuals for a classic tale. The visual elements that make up the cover are beautifully orchestrated, the half of a woman’s face, the spooky house with the sky overlaid and the nebulous black shape containing the book’s title. The muted color palette is perfect, and the pop of red really grabs your eye and brings you to the book title. Overall though it’s extremely simplistic and not overly showy, just a haunting, restrained beauty that makes you want to pick this book up.

A huge congrats to Sergio for winning and a big thanks to all who entered. We’ll be announcing a new Re-Covered Books contest tomorrow I think, so be sure to get your ideas flowing. Kyle picked Jane Eyre and you all loved that one, so I think I’ll let him pick again.

Bobby

Bobby Solomon

September 6, 2011 / By

Re-Covered Books: Jane Eyre

Re-Covered Books: Jane Eyre

Re-Covered Books: Jane Eyre

Re-Covered Books: Jane Eyre

Re-Covered Books: Jane Eyre

A new week, a new Re-Covered Books contest. I’m going to do better about keeping this contest active and moving since so many of you truly seem to enjoy it. This time around I’ve decided to go away from my natural nerdy, boy aesthetic and open up to some older, more feminine literature. Kyle and I were speaking about what book to re-cover this time around, and he thought Jane Eyre would be a good idea. Honestly, I have to say I’ve never read Jane Eyre before, it’s not exactly my style, but I can certainly appreciate it for it’s proto-feminism and Gothic themes.

To do a bit of preparation I read the Jane Eyre Wikipedia page several times, and this bit was super interesting to the nerdy, boy part of me.

Jane Eyre uses many motifs from Gothic fiction, such as the Gothic manor (Thornfield), the Byronic hero (Mr. Rochester) and The Madwoman in the Attic (Bertha), whom Jane perceives as resembling “the foul German spectre—the Vampyre” (Chapter XXV) and who attacks her own brother in a distinctly vampiric way: “She sucked the blood: she said she’d drain my heart” (Chapter XX). The mystery of Thornfield manor with its dark secrets creates a typically Gothic atmosphere of suspense. When resolved, we then get the theme of madness, also common in Gothic fiction, as is the motif of two characters, John Reed and Bertha Mason, who commit suicide. Although the novel contains no overt supernatural occurrences, hints of apparently supernatural happenings are frequently mentioned such as Jane’s prophetic dreams, her sense of the ghost of her uncle, or the lightning striking the oak tree on the night she agrees to marry Mr. Rochester.

Here’s what I’d like to see. Something that doesn’t look anything like what you see in the examples above. I want you to come up with something that’s new and contemporary, something that will grab the attention of a person walking by but that still stays true to the spirit of the book. Don’t do anything retro, a Penguin throwback or anything of the sort. I want to see new, fresh ideas. The winner of this month’s Re-Covered Books contest will win $100 to Amazon.

RULES

• Please save your images as JPGs no larger than 800px wide at 72 DPI/RGB mode, there’s no height restrictions (within reason). Feel free to play with the dimensions and have fun with what you make. Making a front and back cover with certainly help your chances, but is not required.

• Label your files “firstname-lastname-jane-eyre.jpg”

• Send all entries to [email protected] with the subject “Re-Covered Books: Jane Eyre“. Cut and paste what I wrote there, it’s super easy and it helps me keep track of your entry.

• All entries are due September 1st, 2011 by Midnight, PST.

If there are any other questions feel free to leave them in the comments. Looking forward to seeing what you come up with and be sure to tell your friends/classmates/pets to participate. Good luck and have fun!

Continue reading this post…

Bobby Solomon

August 15, 2011 / By

Justin Mezell, Winner of Re-Covered Books: ‘Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?’

Justin Mezell, Winner of Re-Covered Books: 'Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?'

I’ve been really excited and proud by the outpouring of amazing entries for the Re-Covered Books contest featuring Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep. I need to give a huge thanks to the mant talented artists, designers and creatives that decided to enter into the contest. That said, there can only be one winner, and that honor goes to Justin Mezell.

I was most impressed with Justin’s work because of the unique look and style of his entry. At the bottom there’s what looks like to me like one of the androids eyes, and wired up to that is a tiny core that contains a little sheep. Okay, I think it could have possibly been better without the inclusion sheep, but at least it was tastefully done. I also felt like the color combination of orange, blue, charcoal and creme were well picked and complimented each other nicely. The other big factor that really works for me was Justin’s consideration of the typography for the title. There were a lot of entries that didn’t really do a great job on the type, that was a deal breaker for me, but his use of Univers was a nice change from all the Futura. Not hating on Futura, but in a field of a whole lot of Futura, this stands out quite a bit. Justin did a great job of thinking his entry all the way through, and I think he’s totally deserving of being a winner.

Yet again, a big thanks to Justin and all the other creatives who entered. I’ll be sure to announce the next Re-Covered Books contest next week, so be sure to get ready. If you have any suggestions feel free to leave them in the comments section.

Bobby

Bobby Solomon

August 9, 2011 / By

Re-Covered Books: Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?

Re-Covered Books: Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?

Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?

Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?

Well, it’s been a few months since our last Re-Covered Books contest, so I figured it was time we get back to creating some awesome work, don’t you think? I decided that I wanted to pick a book that was newer, something that could really inspire a lot of bold ideas and not be marred with clichés. Browsing through our library at the TFIB HQ I came across a copy of Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?, and realized that’s exactly what I was looking for.

It’s important to remember that this was the book that inspired Blade Runner, the emphasis here is on the word inspired. That means I don’t want to see any Harrison Ford looking guys on your covers, or anything that’s borrowed from Blade Runner. Try and use your imagination and come up with some crazy, sci-fi imagery.

The winner of this month’s Re-Covered Books contest will win $100 to Amazon.

• Please save your images as JPGs no larger than 800px wide at 72 DPI/RGB mode, there’s no height restrictions (within reason). Feel free to play with the dimensions and have fun with what you make. Making a front and back cover with certainly help your chances, but is not required.

• Send all entries to [email protected] with the subject “Re-Covered Books: Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?“. Just cut and paste what I wrote there, it’s super easy and it helps me keep track of your entry.

• All entries are due August 6th, 2011 by Midnight, PST.

If there are any other questions feel free to leave them in the comments. Looking forward to seeing what you come up with and be sure to tell your friends/classmates/pets to participate. Good luck and have fun!

Continue reading this post…

Bobby Solomon

July 13, 2011 / By

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