Recreating History with Play
I'm working with a graphic designer to create not just cover art but an image to identify every book in the series of stories about Argolicus: the short stories and the novel Felix Ravenna: A Mosaic. We started with an image of a Roman soldier at the time 512 C.E. to 514 C.E. The style of the tunic is OK, but Roman and we're changing it to Ostrogoth.
Since the protagonist is not a soldier he'll be holding a book not a lance. And this particular book, the Codex Argenteus, plays a significant role in the novel.
Then there's the face. The hair had to go. Argolicus is dusty blond with curls. So I found a few male hair styles and sent them on as references.
And the face on the soldier was a bit glaring and the models were all very pretty, so we needed a thinker.
I know, dark complexion but this is exactly how the process works. Then, we needed to change the tunic and give it some embroidery, worked by Argolicus' Ostrogoth mum, rather than military leather patches.
Next, the illustrator needed to know where the embroidery goes on the garment.
But this fellow, isn't up on the social scale as high as Argolicus so I did a very rough sketch for the artist on embroidery placement adding a front panel as in the illustration above and shoulder patches.
Book Cover and Marketing
Your book cover is the first thing your potential reader sees. Spend time and thought on how it will look. Examine other books, especially top sellers, in your genre. Notice the conventions and use them to your advantage while still making your cover unique. If you are planning a series, work with your graphic designer to set up a convention so all the books in the series are recognizable to returning readers.