We’ve seen the pages come together for SPIRAL in the previous update. Now, it’s time to look at the identity and branding of our series.
I always intended to have the highest possible “production values” for SPIRAL, putting a lot of effort into the script and story, and also being so lucky as to get Emerson on art duties.
I knew Emerson could do a killer cover to use with the pitch package, to really sell the series – but I wanted to see if we could get an extra “omphf” going with the cover. So I got in touch with Fiona Staples (Saga) and David Aja (Hawkeye), with the intention of having them do one cover each and Emerson to do the remaining covers. No real clue what to expect as a price – or if they could do them, of course.
And – now in hindsight – I guess I’d call myself lucky that Fiona never got back to me (and probably would not have an ounce of time to do it either). David did get back to me, but luckily – bank account speaking – he couldn’t make time to do a cover.
It would have been great to have had both Fiona and David working on a cover each for SPIRAL. The results would have been utterly fantastic, no doubt. But I’m glad I saved those bucks instead.
As I knew, my man Emerson could knock out a terrific cover that surely would turn heads. And after sending him some suggestions as what we could have running through as a theme for the four covers, I sat back and waited.
Figuratively speaking. Meanwhile, I got in touch with a good guy named Nic J. Shaw to create a logo for our book. I sent him the pages and gave him a vague idea:
[…] I’m just thinking… strong, dark. It’s noir. And maybe have some kind of spiral effect on the “i” or something? But please, don’t follow my thoughts if you’ve got better ones yourself […]
And shortly after, this landed in my inbox:
I like the top one best, but I’m not sold on the spiral effect. And maybe the typography is a bit too typical…? I like the strength and roughness of it, though.
These came back:
We were getting close. Next batch:
The top one with the spiral above the i immediately struck a cord. We were close now.
3rd from the top. Bold and strong. That was the one, but with a slightly stronger spiral. We’d found our logo:
And at the same time, Emerson came back to me with this cover sketch he’d done based on these ramblings of mine:
I’m just going to ramble down some thoughts about the cover(s). Sorry if they are inconsistent.
It would have been cool to have the 4 covers really linked together. So if we’re going for a fighting pose, then maybe cover #2 could be the same “fight” and it’s sort of one move further. Same with the 3rd and 4th cover. The 4th sort of delivering the “toughest blow”. Then we can play around with colours and background layout/design to keep them distinct from each other, but also linked.
Another cool set of covers would be extreme close ups of her face. With the wicked make-up on. Kinda like this: http://wallpaper.pickywallpapers.com/kindle-dx/megan-fox-close-up-shot.jpg So that the face is really distinct, and the eyes really grab the person walking by the cover. Since the lower part of the face is black, we can play with that silhouette somewhat, maybe having the London skyline along the black rim of her make-up. Or some other cool effect. With her make-up there are probably many cool ways to play with contrast, light/dark. Noir.
Maybe the #1 cover is that extreme close-up, then #2 pulls out, then 3 even more out etc. And she’s falling down a spiral…?
Also, we could go a bit more detailed. Maybe have the skyline of London silhouetted, slipping down a Spiral. And have Olivia standing in the middle of it.
Maybe the extreme close-up of her face can be like:
#1 – her face, no make-up but with the distinct glasses.
#2 – her face, busted up, after the shooting that happened at the end of issue #1. She looks really bad, bruised lip and cracked eyebrow etc.
#3 – Her face somewhat healed, but she’s in tears [REMOVED DUE TO SPOILER] ? Or maybe she should look like she’s in a coma. Sleeping serenely.
#4 – her face with the distinct make-up.
In all of these there could be room to play with some spiral designs too.
Another way to do it is to include more characters on the cover, of course. Implement them into a spiral layout/design somehow.
I’ll let you get back to me with your thoughts before I ramble on any more.
The sketch based on my ramblings:
The face was spot on. I loved it right away. And after a bit of discussion we decided the cityscape was too cliché. Plus, we wanted as clean a cover as possible. So after a quick fix, we’d landed on our final cover, on just the second attempt. Easy going!
Here’s the final cover, with the logo and our names. SPIRAL had a proper identity and branding to it now.
Clean and simple, yet mysterious and eye-catching. Perfect!
Next round we’ll take a look at how we put the pitch package together in a way we felt would attract editors/publishers.
See you then!