A children’s book cover(Exercise)

In this exercise I am going to produce a cover illustration for a natural history book suitable for children (age 7–11) entitled Animals from Around the World. The image is to be used as a full colour front jacket to encourage children to choose this book from a library shelf. At the age of 7-11 years children may have lots of questions with their vivid imagination. So this would be the best time to learn about scientific knowledge. Animals from Around the World, there are too many kinds of these, even some we don’t know and some which we haven’t found yet. I need to show the most representative types and make them  attractive to children. I am going to give various classifications to encourage the children to be interested in the book and also to give answers to their imaginations questions. I think the children’s the first question would be: where do they come from and where do they live? I started off with a list of animals from different environments and I have done the an enviroment based spider diagram and mood board. spider diagram A children's book cover-MB The mood board I have made contains the following categories: the sky, the polar, the grassland, the wetland, the rain forest, desert and south pole then end with the ocean. I have bought books before entitled “Let’s draw cute animals”, “20 ways to draw a cat” and after research then I also get some reference book cover pictures which informed me. I learnt a lot from these books and books’ covers.

IMG_5090 IMG_5091

Animals’ everywhere by Jonathan Woodward


Big sticker book of animals by Cecilia Johansson and Rebecca Finn Big stick book of animals

The happy forest by Eric Winstone

The happy forest

Animals around the world by Anthony Lewis

Animals around the world

Around the world in 80 animals around the world in 80 animals

Then I am going to draw some sketches.

Sketch (1) Sketch (2) Sketch (3)

Then some thumbnail ideas of sketches as below:

A children's book cover-1 (1) A children's book cover-2 (1)A children's book cover-3 (1)A children's book cover-4

I am going to use size A4 paper to practice my children’s book covers. I think A4 is more useful size. And I am going to practice the first 3 ones for this exercise.

Idea 1:I am going to use a different zone for each animal which has a different habitat and each animal will represent their living habitat. Finally I used photoshop to add the words on the jacket.

A children's book cover-1 (3) A children's book cover-1 (4) The main mistake/problem is I should use a camel to represent the desert because an elephant needs much green foods so perhaps it was the wrong choice.

Idea 2: I am going to use the world map to show to children that the animals come from different places around the globe and they can be far away from each other. I have drawn a colourful world map but perhaps the background is too dark. I thought to lighten with photoshop, then print out and draw on it after. Unfortunately the printer doesn’t work while I am doing this exercise so I have used a collage to do the characters. The blue whale  of which I only used its tail because this is a large size  compared to the lemur which is much smaller than it.

I have drawn a colourful world map first then put my collage of animals on it showing where each animal comes from..

A children's book cover-2 (2) A children's book cover-2 (3) A children's book cover-2 (5)A children's book cover-2 (8)

I had a problem that I didn’t control the colour which made the background too dark. I attempted to scan the first drawing by scanner but unfortunately the printer’s yellow ink cartridge didn’t work. After this I had to lighten the background with photoshop then put the words on it. The main problem is the background and the collage shapes are not a distinct contrast.

Idea 3: I have chosen the word “world” and drawn some animals from each continent with background into each letter.

A children's book cover-3 (2)

When I finished the word I put a variety of colours for the background. I have used a camera for getting the different backgrounds with the letters but they are dark and grey because they have been taken in the night. Never mind so I would like to try scanning it with a white background.

A children's book cover-3 (3) A children's book cover-3 (4) A children's book cover-3 (8) A children's book cover-3 (10)

Then I tried a variety of poses to display the letters. Also I tried changing the layout and the orientation of the letters.

A children's book cover-3 (14) A children's book cover-3 (17) A children's book cover-3 (19)

A children's book cover-3 (16)-1

A children's book cover-3 (18)-1

A children's book cover-3 (20)-1

The last one is my favorite but its main problem with this idea is that all the elements are independent to each other.

I feel that this exercise took me too long but I do enjoy this exercise also enjoy drawing the cute animals. I think I have found ideas that would appeal to children in the age group but I am not sure about the overall aesthetic.