This week, I began designing my work on InDesign.

As I began working on the designing process, I decided to keep the colour palette to a minimal and fairly monochrome as I didn’t want to include bold colours for several reasons.

The first being, I wanted my book to have a similar layout and aesthetic look to other crime novels.

The other reason being, I didn’t want to draw attention away from the dark topic. I felt that it would be inappropriate to have a crime piece have a bright, colourful layout.

I also designed the front cover with this mindset in place.

When I started, I decided to gather inspiration from other novels, including those in the crime genre. I took covers I liked and put them all together to see what I could come up with.

Front cover inspiration

From these covers, I learnt that books with a darker theme had a different colour palette to those that were more ‘coming of ages’ stories. Crime novels mostly had impactful covers that grabbed your attention, they usually used darker colours such as blacks, maroons, navy’s and purples. Most crime novel covers also had a subtle yet hidden message on the cover that the audience would understand after reading the novel. I wanted to incorporate this into my own cover.

The overall tone of the crime novels was a lot darker and fit the topic they were writing about. The covers were also more intricate than the other genres I researched. Front covers are the audiences first impression so you want to put across the feeling and tone that you are writing about. I took all of these thoughts on board.

From that, I began to design.

After talking with two of my tutors, the idea of a flashlight being shone on a crown was created. I loved this idea as it could be interpreted in so many different ways. To me, the first thing that came to mind was the idea that the limelight was always on JonBenet’s crown and pageant achievements, rather than her school work or other achievements a child would be praised for. She was seen as a pageant queen, more than a child.

The cover could also be seen as a spotlight shining on a queen and then after reading the story, they could go back to the cover and see that it is actually a flashlight, the flashlight that plays a big part in the case.

I really love this idea as I feel it stays true to the crime genre whilst also not disrespecting or exploiting the situation.

finished jonbenet cover.jpg