Cover art is only a backdrop to a cover designer. The cover artist for Confessions of Female Safety Engineer left enough empty space for the lettering, and made parts of the art dark or light enough for text to contrast. But it was Canadian cover designer Tom Simon who added the title, author name, spine text, book description and blurb (reader endorsement).
Below is a mockup of what I wanted, before we chose fonts:
As you can see, it’s acceptable, readable. But we wanted to punch it up with just the right font. Also, nowadays your tiny “thumbnail”-sized cover is the first thing people see online, and this one would not do well as a thumbnail.
So we went through fonts for HOURS, looking for just the right one. Eventually we selected one by a font artist in Argentina.
For the word “Confessions” I wanted a script font that was visible in thumbnail size, in this color. We had a variety of good fonts for the other wording on the cover but that word, and my name, had to stand out. Each item was a layer in Photoshop.
Then, there was the back cover.
I provided a heading, the synopsis, and a blurb…and Tom used the same fonts but made it fit in the available space. He had to leave room for the ISBN (international bookseller number) and barcode. Then Tom used a grid based on the number of pages to add spine lettering of the proper thickness.
So, below is the final wraparound cover we used. And now you know how it was designed.