Friday, March 15, 2013
Cover Artist Interviews: Brenda Meelker - Embrision Arts
By Jacob Donley
[FFM] Can you tell us a little about yourself?
[BM] Making digital art began as a welcome diversion and hobby in 2008 but soon became a real passion and lifestyle.
Hi, I’m Brenda, I’m a completely self-taught digital artist from The Netherlands who started her company ‘Embrision Arts’ in 2011. With my company I’m selling my own creations in co-operation with a certified Giclée print manufacturer. Currently I’m also working as a freelance artist for book publishers, which I would like continue to do in the future.
Looking at my work, you’ll see that it is characterized by a vivid imagination, visual poetry and by a clear presence of strong light and vivid/bright colors. My artwork portrays a world of beauty, emotion and story, all shown through photomontage and painted elements.
[FFM] Can you share your process in creating a book cover?
[BM] It is basically the same as you would normally create any artwork. You must, however, take into account (more) extra features such as: the dimensions, resolution and wishes of the publisher. You should know up front if it’s the desire of the publisher to create a wrap around cover or not.
I always make my creations in high resolution, but for a book cover you must also make sure that the work is print ready. Also take into account color and contrast: how it will look when it is printed. You go to work and will contact the publisher or the company’s designer from time to time about the progress. The publisher and writer must ultimately be satisfied so you carry out any necessary adjustments. As always when making a digital work you must ensure that you properly store all layers and steps. You must be ready to immediately perform corrections. A work for a client by me is always saved as TIFF format, so there is a minimal loss of pixels. The cover is finished when the client feels that it is ready and rightly so.
[FFM] Can you tell us about the challenges in getting started in cover design?
[BM] I have so far done a few commissions where the publishers themselves contacted me. In the future, for certain, I will undertake more action to approach publishers and it is of course the question of whether I will be successful. I think it is at least important to fill your portfolio with high quality and unique work, gathering an interest in your work (through websites and by profiling yourself). You should also expand your resume through other commands and exhibitions.
[FFM] What is your favorite cover that you have designed?
[BM] SILVER, for Talia Vance. I received a lot of great compliments for the design, and I was pleased to know that Talia was very happy with the cover as well.
[FFM] What program(s) do you use when you design covers?
[BM] I still use one of the first Photoshop Elements for the basics (learned everything with it), Photoshop CS 5 Extended and Paint Shop Pro X4. I also use my Wacom tablet.
[FFM] Do you have anything specific that you would like to tell aspiring artists?
[BM] Save all your (psd) files and steps properly (be prepared for corrections) and communicate at all times well with your clients. Keep them updated and informed while doing your commission. It’s professional, and clients may very well be able to work with you again in the future. Further more: Create with passion and try to be as good as possible. If creating covers is what you love to do, then go for it. You might succeed.
Brenda Meelker, founder of Embrision Arts can be contacted at: