Making A Cover: Choosing the Right Fonts

I initially wanted to write a blog-post about making a cover, but then realised there are so many components that a single post couldn’t possibly cover (pun intended) them all. Therefore, I’ve decided to try and focus on a single component but explain it thoroughly rather than disarrayed information about various things.

This post is dedicated to kitygirl123 from Wattpad, who asked me first. 🙂

Things I’d like to address:

  • Using the right font
  • Finding fonts online
  • Choosing fonts for different genres

I would also like to note: this entire post is for creative purposes only. If you are searching for information regarding commercial uses, I’m afraid this isn’t the post for you. Also, I am by no means a professional; this is just a guide I’ve created using my limited knowledge as an amateur graphic designer.

But I hope it helps you. Even if just a little bit.

USING THE RIGHT FONT:

Firstly, finding the right font for certain words is difficult. But when it’s broken down, you’ll find it’s easier to make.

For example, have a look at the following cover:

Words like “The” and “Is” (simple words which contribute to the title making sense rather than carrying a meaning themselves) are always easier for me to cover, as I believe they shouldn’t be exaggerated.

For small words, I always use one of these fonts:

It’s the keywords which should be decorated. When I was making it, I couldn’t find a good font for “City” or “Silent.” So I went on dafont.com and, quite literally, searched “city” and then queried “silent.”

This is how I came up with the two fonts.

  • Cityscape by Edward Taylor [Download]
  • Silent Hunter III by Louis Frank [Download]

I believe a singular word should be taken into consideration. Don’t think about the cover as a whole. Instead, think what the word “Silent” should look like. What would the word “City” look like? I was lucky and found results by querying the word itself.

However, sometimes it’s more difficult. In those cases, you need to imagine what kind of feel/look the word itself should have. If it’s a decorative font, search it. Holiday themed? Search that. It’s all about visualising, when it comes to choosing the right font.

FINDING FONTS ONLINE:

What I love doing is finding font-packs. That way, I can select all of them, right-click and extract, then end up with numerous fonts at once.

One of my favourite packs is this one, and I generally love most of them. However, there are still some which I’d never use, which brings me to the setback of downloading font-packs: you may dislike some fonts, which use unnecessary space.

If you’d rather, I recommend downloading each font individually (an option that is also available at that link).

My favourite resource for finding fonts is Tumblr. Usually these are decorative fonts, popular styles and “modern” designs that other users advertise.

Check it out here (results of searching “font pack” on Tumblr)

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CHOOSING FONTS FOR DIFFERENT GENRES:

As mentioned above, the word itself is a huge indicator of the type of font to use. You wouldn’t write the word “murder” in flowery, bubbly letters. At the same time, using bold, unsettling styles may steer an audience away if it’s, let’s say, light-hearted (although I should hope nobody uses “murder” in the title of a chick-lit story)

Not only should you always take the word itself into consideration, but also the genre.

Here are sample font packs for different genres:

  • Thriller/Mystery (Bold, distinguishable, occasionally faded)
  • Humour (fonts with rounded curves, easy on the eyes, perhaps even bubble writing)
  • Horror (sharp edges, maybe wispy, child’s handwriting is also haunting)
  • Fan-fiction (Preferably a similar or identical font to the slogan of the fandom)
  • Romance (Cursive, feminine and romantic)
  • Fantasy (Cursive but bold, decorative, fit for a scribe)

These are just sample ideas, and do not represent the full extent of fonts belonging to a particular genre. To each their very own, I suppose, as my opinion may differ from another person’s. And that’s perfectly fine.

This also applies to this entire post. These are my ideas, thoughts and “recognition” of what certain words feel/look like –and if you share this perspective, then that’s wonderful. But if you don’t, I hope you find the “right” fonts which express your perspective of a word. 🙂

**NOTE: Most fonts cannot be used commercially without a license. If you are planning to publish something/use a font commercially, always make sure to check on its guidelines. This post was for creative purposes only. 

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BONUS: Positioning the Font

Just as the font style itself is vital, so is the positioning. This one is quite obsolete, and if you read the following directions carefully, it’s easy to see why. These are usually key rules that you couldn’t break unless you know it suits the picture at hand, or if you are sure it looks right. This particular aspect of graphic designing is difficult to explain, so I’ll just show you a couple of examples of people doing it correctly.

  • Do not put fonts where they overlap the picture.
  • Correctly space each word and letter (eg. do not have 4 spaces after a letter, and only one after the next)
  • Use up all the space you are given, and make your font as big as possible (don’t hold back)

This picture would not be as effective if the “graphic” part was smaller. It also does not interfere with the picture at hand. It also looks natural, as the line from the person and text is both interconnected.

Although there is a picture in the background, the text utilizes the space it’s given (it uses the lines on either side of the “G” and “c” in Graphics) and stays away from the picture itself (the typography in the bottom left corner).

The positioning of this graphic design is quite eye-catching. It uses “wordplay” by including a common letter and the crossover between both.

 photo Signature_zps96780f45.png

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