Bad Cover Art…Redesigned: Beyond the Threshold

Welcome to Bad Cover Art…Redesigned! Where I bring you the most horrible of all cover art I can find on the world wide web and try to come up with an alternative (that I hope is better).

This week I bring you: Beyond The Threshold by Linda Lael Miller

According to Google, Beyond the Threshold is about two women who discover a family heirloom that grants the power of time travel. In their travels the women both fall in love and have to make life-altering decisions! DECISIONS! Doesn’t sound that bad really. Sort of like a Kate Morton book just with time travel.

I now bring to you Beyond the Threshold…Redesigned!

Thoughts – 

This week I kind of struggled to find a cover that I wanted to remake. Usually I trawl through Amazon or someone’s collection of bad covers until I find something that leaps out of me. Something that I look at and this idea of how I can redesign it just smacks me in the face (sounds painful but it’s a cost I am willing to pay to please you). That wasn’t happening this week. I was just getting murky ideas with vague intentions. A hesitant pat rather than a full on wallop. I mean where were all the hideously misused cats?

I eventually came across this week’s cover, which I’ll admit isn’t horrific compared to some I have posted on here. Having said that though…it’s still kind of ‘Blah’ and that can also be a problem. It just feels really wishy washy. I kind of like the idea of the light and the flowers and this kind of peaceful setting but the image is quite flat, all the contrast seems to have been sucked out of it. My main problem is the font though, especially for the title. It’s kind of hard to decipher at a glance. When I look through these bad covers it’s usually the title that’ll trigger an idea in me. This I think is similar to if you see a title in the bookshop. Ok you will notice the cover and what that says about the book but I think titles are just as important for drawing people in. So if you can’t even really see the title…then that’s not really in the book’s favour. At the same time though, it also seems that the author has been given more importance here than the actual title. Even though I’ve never heard of the author, I presume this means her name has weight behind it.

I am still torn as to whether I actually like my redesign. Sometimes I look at it and think ‘Oooh niiiice’ then other times I look and think ‘What the hell is that? You call that a cover?’ I liked the idea of using this photo (which is mine) because of the gate that leads to this bright light. Beyond the Threshold sort of hints that you are travelling somewhere, stepping through or past something. Indeed the novels seem to be about time travel. So I think the image sort of fits and I kind of like the Art Deco feel of it. I’m not sure what era they travel back to but the style of the cover can hint towards this.

Originally I just used the photo as I had taken it. I didn’t manipulate it much beyond colour balancing and contrast and brightness. The original image however is too busy. There’s too much going on to distract the eye and the font just didn’t fit anywhere. There was no place for it. Eventually I thought that I might try to blur the edges out to black and see if that would help. I messed around in the Filter tab for a little while and then hit ‘Cut out’ and bam…this happened and I thought it looked pretty cool.

Process – 

Step 1 – Play around with background photo.

Step 2 – Discover ‘Cut out’ option in Filters>Artistic tab. Play around with how much detail I wanted and how defined I wanted the cut out to be.

Step 3 – Pick a font. Trawl through a few fonts till I settled on using an Art Deco style one.

Step 4 – Add author name

Step 5 – Play around with having a tagline to fill some of the black but after expert opinion (thank you, Lauren) decide against it.

Step 6 – Enlarged canvas slightly to try and balance the black on either side.

Elements – 

Main Font – TaliDeco

Author Font – Perpetua Titling MT


The image I used is actually one of my own photos.


Hope you like it! Let me know if you find any horrible covers.

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3 Responses

  1. Demeter says:

    I love it, as I already said!

  2. Heather says:

    I love the mix of light and dark in your cover, it gives a really great sense of atmosphere! And I definitely agree the first cover is very blah. I mean come on, you’re told the book is about time travel and you make that?!

  3. Animal says:

    That’s amazing! Really like the photo used in bg.

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