Creepy Book Cover Concept

As a starving indie author I can’t afford a professional book cover design, so I decided to brush up my graphics skills to get ready to make my own covers. I use gimp, a free graphics software which is also known as the poor man’s photoshop. (You can download it from

If you want to learn how to make your own book covers, Rachel Zellers is running an excellent tutorial series on her blog here:

Anyway, I have downloaded hundreds of fancy brushes from deviantart (searching for gimp brushes reveals hundreds of results) and decided to play with them a bit. I was actually trying to do a happy, cheerful, fairy-tale kind of cover but ended up with a creepy gothic thing. Reading too much grimdark fantasy literature has that effect on you I guess!

This is not the actual cover for my own book, it’s just a concept I slapped together this evening. Gimp brushes are a lot of fun to play with!

creepy book cover design

creepy book cover design

17 thoughts on “Creepy Book Cover Concept

  1. I am huge proponent of DIY. Just keep in mind that the cover is your salesman. People will decide whether your book is good by its cover, like it or not. And remember that Kindle covers look different than paperback.

    I also recommend that you find unusual but still legible fonts and remember to be bold and simple in your design. Try to be as dynamic and tense as your are in your prose. Look at the best designs you can, and also look at bad ones. What makes a good design? Check out Chip Kidd. He makes more than the authors, many times. There’s a reason. He’s a master.

    Here are two I did.

    I made both of these myself in Photoshop and am really pleased with the result. I want my designsto be as close to professional as possible, so I took great care with the typography, image quality and composition. Do quite a few and try them out on people, too. Good luck!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you so much! I have a lot to learn, but DIY is the way to go. I will check the link when I wake up, it’s past my bedtime now. Thanks a lot!


  2. Pingback: Creepy Book Cover Concept | Michaelphelps1's Blog

  3. Those are some really cool brushes! I used to get stuff from DA but quit because so many of them had restrictions on use like “can’t use outside of DA” or “Can’t use commercially” etc etc. I haven;t been back in a few years so maybe that has lessened now?


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