37 thoughts on “The Cowl (IronScythe #1) Proposed Cover

  1. I think the background looks great! But the sword does look kind of off kilter. Mind you thats possibly not a bad thing! Depends what you are trying to get across.

    1. My problem is that I can’t draw very well, and even if I could, I can’t draw on a screen 🙁 So I had to create ‘IronScythe’ with bits of other swords and a little graphical wizardry. It is a little odd looking, yeah. The other problem – it’s supposed to be a dark terrible thing, yet, it’s kinda shiny. I dunno.

  2. allenthehun

    My opinion is that it is very eye catching, well done.

    1. Thank you. I agree, but I think it can be better. A good starting point 🙂

  3. Greg

    I do quite like it, perhaps the sword should be ‘fatter’ so the blade covers more of the ‘W’ in cowl, more of a vertical from the teeth on the inside as i look at it. Then this might offer a larger shiny menacing blade to make it appear more sinister?
    Just my thought’s, I’m no expert

    1. Yeah, I like that – a lot.Will give that a go 🙂

  4. Narissa

    I like the cover, although I do agree the sword does look quite shiny and new. I like the bottom part of the sword – the part that is partially covered by the yellow light and the WL, as it looks more aged. I think if you could age the sword so that it had that same shadowing and texture and could make the hilt look a little used then it would be perfect 🙂

    1. Thanks! Yeah, I tried the texture thing, but to no avail. Maybe a total rethink. Will have to see.

  5. Prettykittyfire

    I don’t like the sword… It serves no purpose… its just kinda floating in front of the background, and a little squiffy because the perspective is all messed up :/ maybe do something else like the silhouette of a cloaked figure seeing as it’s called The Cowl instead? but I do like the background, that looks awesome!

    1. Yeah, it was a leap to have a sword floating into the foreground. Maybe a gloved hand around the hilt? I tried to draw/find an image for the Cowl, but when you read the story, you will realise that’s a little problematic. Thanks for the feedback 🙂

  6. Anastasia

    I’m not sure about the sword, it doesn’t fit. I don’t know.

  7. tracy moore

    I like the background but tend to agree with ‘Prettykittyfire’ that t appears to serve no purpose. If you want the sword on the cover a silhouette one pointing straight and downwards may look better.

    1. The background is fun. I’ll certainly try that.

  8. This is the prose I have to work with – I’ve not made it easy for myself…

    “A thickly hewn sword, long in the hilt and sabre-like. A black filigree of shapes and glyphs traced the dark surface for almost two thirds of its length. Here snags jutted—designed to catch unwary blades. The remainder was shiny grey and scythed, polished to a blinding excellence.

    Something alive seemed to inhabit the blade. Moving? She could not be sure. It is as I suspected. His weapon is crafted from irons, from delving metals. She shivered. Such things are wicked, forbidden.

    The Cowl twisted the sword. A delicate limning of gold caught the cresset-light—the weapon revealed itself as a thing of beauty and grand design, a weapon of a hero. The sword twisted again and became foreboding, shadowy and evil.”

    1. Anastasia

      That was pretty good! I actually cannot wait to read it. Great job. 😉

  9. nicolas lachance (butcher)

    I think it’s great, beautiful picture, very professional, I give 9/10, congratulation!!!

    1. Thanks Nicholas. That’s a lovely comment 🙂

  10. pooks82

    I like it because the lighting confuses the eye. The light source being in the background, but the light is shown in front of the sword, so it makes the viewer think there’s another unseen light source to this image. It definitely makes a viewer stop and observe. So in that case, well done.

  11. The orange spray looking thing that comes in from the right throws me off. I’m not sure what that is or why it’s layered above the sword.

    If I were making this cover, I’d probably have the silhouette of the buildings be a little higher.

    The font looks great. I like the sword. And overall, the “feel” of the cover is very nice.

    1. Thanks for that Andrew! The orange spray was an attempt at ‘smoke and mirrors’ – to try and fix the skew-whiff nature of the image. You got me on that one!

  12. @grubbymunky

    Its a great looking cover.
    The background defo looks right but I think a silhouette of a sword would look much better in the foreground.
    Or you could just darken the sword colours up to make it look more dangerous looking.I would straighten it slightly aswell.
    It is honestly a good looking cover and you should be made up with what you’ve achieved. Hope this helps.

  13. Victoria Scott

    Cover looks good, sword could look alittle more intimidating though……

    1. Hi Victoria – yeah, in a nutshell. That’s what’s wrong. Thanks for that 🙂

  14. It’s a cool background, nice feel to it, but I agree with some of the other comments that the sword isn’t quite right yet. Good start, though.

  15. Brittowleye

    Hi Kev! Your vision is lovely! I absolutely love the background choice and colors and it immediately sets the tone for the book. However, the sword as mentioned above can use a bit more adjustments. I recommend using a vanishing point off the left side of the cover to help with the perspective of the sword. Increasing the width of the sword may help as well and adding more shadow (darker silver hues) with small highlights here and there will help give it that sinister look you are looking for. It’s tricky, but I think you can do it! Good luck!

  16. Annette

    In general I think the cover is very well done, it has great atmosphere is very well proportioned, and is quite intriguing. I think for a “non- artist” you did an exceptional job! I too feel that something just needs to be done with the sword: the haft is good (I’d leave it as is) the hilt for some reason looks a little too “Klingon-y” to me so, I’d make it a little more original AND (more importantly) a little less flat…it looks too two dimensional to me and I think that’s what may be giving the impression of “cheapness” or “triteness” to it. I’d shade it more maybe mix some steel blue into it & on the way down to the blade, which I also agree with the others, needs fixing – older/deeper…and yes, the yellow at bottom right is too pronounced. Judging the book by its cover though, I’d buy it…it looks great! 🙂

    1. Thanks. That’s some lovely compliments and some good advice. Just got to figure out how to add the steel blue!

  17. Tony Talbot

    Reverse it – have the sword come from top right to bottom left. Switch everything else around as well. That leads the eye from your name, along the sword, to the title of the book in one sweeping Z.

  18. Cheryl

    I think it’s great! Very vibrant and eye catching. The sword is awesome but perhaps more of the blade showing. Maybe the blade needs to be darker with glints of shading and some well placed highlights

  19. Kristi Jean

    I like the colors and the concept. The sword, while an excellent idea, is not making the impact I think you want. I enjoy the sharpness of the hilt design, but find it to be too reminiscent of that from Orcrist. The blade, I love. The concept of one item in the foreground is used often, and I think it may be beneficial (and more eye-catching) to bring the city silhouette into the foreground as well. Keep the red background. With the city silhouette, perhaps change it to a very dark brown or bronze with black detailing (so it appears to be more in shadow than a shadow itself) and entwine the sword with the wall. I suggest focusing more on the sharp blade design and going for a more simplistic, yet still leather-bound hilt. If you dull the shine from the blade yet keep it silver/gray and place it within the wall, it will have more of a realistic patina (if you will). A more simplistic hilt will help with the perspective view.
    On another note, I really enjoy that splash of yellow within the red. It’s fiery and grabs your attention.
    I hope my suggestions help, though I don’t know if they might ruin the integrity of the story representation that you are going for.

    1. All great suggestions! Thanks a lot 🙂

  20. Michelle Davis

    My problem with the sword is the way the bottom is shaped. I think it could be a little smoother when it reaches the point where it get close to the book title. I’m not sure if I’m making sense. Also I don’t know why by the little light source at the bottom looks a little like sunlight….maybe it should be a little higher up.

    1. The sunlight at the bottom was an attempt to hide the perspective problem… but like writing, you can fool yourself you’ve fixed something, but deep down you know you have to go back and do it again properly! 🙂

  21. Cherie Belkin

    The cover is dramatic and attracts attention. My issue is that the sword doesn’t even vaguely resemble a scythe.

    1. I’m going to use the phrase ‘dramatic license’ heh. But ues, I’m aware of it..

  22. Michelle Davis

    So I’ve been reading the other comments about the book cover and the remark where you mentioned a covered/ gloved hand over the hilt of the sword kinda reminds me of a Witchblade. I don’t know if your wanting something like that or similar to the look of a Midieval Knight.

    I also agree with another poster about maybe the sword would look better if the position was switched. Also you could try bringing the buildings a little bit more in the foreground. And by little I mean miniscule.

  23. Hi everyone. Just wanted to thank you all for your great advice helping me design my cover. The printed version is now ready and not a sword in sight (actually, I put it on the back!). Please take a look and tell me what you think:


    Again, many thanks. You really helped.

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