Some of you have made or are thinking about making your own cover art for your e-book. It's not a challenge requirement, but a book cover is a nice perk for your reader and a creative opportunity for you.
Creating cover art need not be complicated. There's no law that says you have to depict any character or element from your story; the title and your by line against a plain or patterned background will serve very well.
I am certainly not the world's greatest cover art designer, but I try to have a good time with what I do. For the cover of my short story collection, Do or Die, I combined a cut-out filtered self-portrait and a neon-glow filtered image of a huge moth I'd found one day outside my apartment:
I added a title and byline text, and I had my cover:
Online art generators can help with composing elements and text involved in your cover art. Here's one I made with FlagrantDisregard.com's customized magazine cover maker for our pup's digital photo album:
If you decide to make your own cover art, my advice is to start simple and build on that. One last trick -- I save multiple copies of my art at every stage of construction, in case I do something to mess it up or want to do comparison side-by-sides of two different looks.
You've got four weeks left until the challenge deadline, so there's still plenty of time to play. Have fun with it.
Some online generators* and freeware that may help you:
CoolText.com can generate some interesting free text graphics for your title and byline.
Get mathematically graphic with the free trial download of Fractal Draw.
For interesting art you can make online, try the Jackson Pollock Online Art Generator and ArtPad.com's Painting Generator.
FlagrantDisregard.com also has a very cool Photo Collage Generator that breaks down a digital photo into a collage of Polaroids.
Need image software but can't afford it? Get a free trial download of Adobe Photoshop.
Make cover backgrounds with the Random Texture Generator
Skip all the hard stuff and make your romantic cover with Glass Giant's Romance Novel Cover Generator.
The Perception Laboratory's Face Transformer can alter portrait photos and images in a variety of ways.
My post: Ten Things about Making Your Own Art
Zoner's page of free to try and freeware graphics dowloands.
*Most of the links found over at The Generator Blog.