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272 Views 3 Replies Last post: Aug 31, 2018 9:51 AM by walton RSS
Level 0 2 posts since
Jul 16, 2017
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Aug 11, 2018 1:04 PM

Book Cover Image for book

I am in the final stages of my book and creating a cover for it.

I have searched the gallery of Createspace images which are available.  I have not quite found one that fits what I am looking for.  I created my own cover in word, but the resolution image is less than 300 DPI.  Has anyone gone ahead and used a low resolution image anyway for your cover?  If so, what were your results?  Does anyone have any advice?  I really want my cover image to look a certain way.  Please help or offer suggestions.



Level 3 865 posts since
Sep 15, 2014
Currently Being Moderated
1. Aug 11, 2018 2:07 PM in response to: AliciaSpeaks
Re: Book Cover Image for book

Don't to it, especially if it contains a lot of detail. Watch my video about cover creation for a few tips.

Level 5 19,154 posts since
Sep 5, 2009
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3. Aug 31, 2018 9:51 AM in response to: AliciaSpeaks
Re: Book Cover Image for book

Using lower resolution images is possible.  For example:



Arguably, the 200 dpi image is better, sharper.  But that may not always be the case.  We should use 300 dpi (ppi is more accurate, pixels per inch), because it is consistently better and for most print work, nothing is gained by going higher . . . except for 1-bit, black and white, line art, where you should go no less than 600 dpi--I prefer 800 dpi.


KDP Print Guideline says:


For optimal printing, all images (both cover and manuscript) should be at least 300 DPI. Images less than 300 DPI will be flagged prior to publishing so you can resubmit updated images.


Take a look at Make Your Own Cover--a free, 30-page, step-by-step, tutorial on how to make a cover--check out my free page, link below.  As recommended above, is a reasonably good program.  I think GIMP is better--better documentation, more resources, more features--and it, too, is free.


You can alter an image's resolution in most graphics programs.  I recommend GIMP, which is free.  Sometimes this does not damage the image, sometimes it does.  Within reason, you should be able to bump things easily if you stay under 700% (a number that many programs reference).  I've enlarge images (like bumping up the resolution--where the program has to manufacture additional pixels) as much as 2500%.  This can take a bit of work, but it is doable.


When you change the size (dimensions and/or resolution), enlarge the image and check it carefully.  The most common problem is that images soften when they are enlarged, so you might have to apply some sharpening.  Sharpening is destructive, that is, it alters pixels.  So always work with copies.  My go to sharpening method is called hiraloam: unsharp mask--high radius (10 to 14 px) and low amount (40% to 60%).  Second best, the normal unsharp mask--low radius (1-2 px) at a high amount (150% to 300%, or more!).  Also, high pass filter, embossing, etc.  You can sharpen separate layers, and you can use the opacity slider to just tweaks those layers.  You can also sharpen selections.  I'm sure this is too much information . . . but it's easy to pick up the basics as you go.


Given the spam here, come on over to  selfpublishingforum.  It's free.  Many of us who answer questions here are active there.




Bleeds,  free, 91 page guide to bleeds, margins, covers, and annotated CreateSpace guidelines. Prepress Glossary: free, 79 page, fully illustrated prepress glossary with annotations for  CreateSpace users Type & Typography: free, 112 page illustrated guide to designing books, typography, with glossary, and type specimen pages  Free: list of free PDF downloads; selfpublishingforum: spam free forum. Contact  for graphics, design, and typesetting help.




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