Aug 21, 2009

The Saramond Quests

"Iron Dragons" book cover design.

A friend of mine by the name of Derek P. Gilbert is a multi-talented guy. He has done podcasting, worked as a rock music DJ on radio, hosting a FM talk radio show, a barber shop quartet member, seller of steel, and an author. He's like a utility player in baseball who can play any position he needs, to get the job done. And if that wasn't enough, he's also a really nice guy as well.

I finally got around to listening to his first audio book "Iron Dragons" about five months ago. I'll admit I'm not a huge fan of fantasy so that is why I put off getting into it for about a year. Well needless to say once I started listening to his book I was hooked, it's a compelling story with a nice twist and rich character development.

Since Derek has a voice for radio he also reads the book too, the fact it's FREE to anyone who wants to listen via is a no-brainer.

I was less impressed with the books cover however. I didn't think it did the story justice and felt the series needed to have a branded look established since this is "Book One of The Saramond Quests."

I had to tread lightly though, you see his wife Sharon designed the book cover and I didn't want to offend anyone, especially a friends better half.

Well, I never had to approach Derek because he beat me to it, and asked me to design a consistent brand for him. He's donated a lot of time sharing his work with everyone so I didn't mind sharing some of mine as well. If in the process I can help a friends work get the attention it deserves that is reward enough IMO.

"The Saramond Quests" brand logo.

Since these books will live online I kept the design streamlined. Each book will be branded with a new color but keep the same general format to create a branded coherent series. The first book is the crown jewel in the story arch so we settled on purple, this also had a lot to do with the fact that I negotiated a deal with one of the top fantasy artists in this genre Ciruelo Cabral. He gave us permission to use his dragon illustration on the cover. I was thrilled that he allowed us the privilege to use his art for this project, thank you Ciruelo!

Combine the incredible dragon art with a new branding for "The Saramond Quests" and we now have a firm visual foundation for future covers. Derek of course loves the new cover and I'll be helping him with his future covers as well.

"The Saramond Quests" brand logo.

I thought the iconic dragon looked pretty cool so I created a t-shirt design with it.

Derek has also just released another FREE audio book called "The God Conspiracy" which is in a totally different genre but once again another fun listen.

I didn't however design this latest cover, his wife did. Like Schultz on Hogan's Heros "I see nothing!"


Scott Perez-Fox said...

Very sharp, I like the dragon icon. Reminds me of the Bacardi Bat, which isn't such a bad thing.

Also, I can definitely foresee someone getting a tattoo of this.

jannypie said...

i just came across Iron Dragon on iTunes, and i was immediately hooked as well. i am a fantasy addict, particularly dragons, and this book is one of the best i've "heard/read" in a while. i am loving your cover design as well, and that dragon kicks ass!