Don't judge a book by its cover. Even though this is true, book covers are often misleading, exaggerated and not doing justice to the contents. Nevertheless, the book cover is very important. People are often attracted or not by the cover of a book. Before opening the book they look at the cover, perhaps front and back, read the title, the author's name and decide whether to give it a second chance.
I thought of the book cover design and gave the graphic designer this brief: I want the cover to depict that I had the memory of Pastor Joseph deeply etched in my mind and from that memory I was receiving the lessons I had learned from his life and example. The designer was happy that I had given him something clear to work with. So he chose a rather iconic photograph of Pastor, got it in black and white and then tried to make it a little less pronounced using a computer technique to give it an etched look. It seemed good with a greyish background and we were thinking of going for it until someone saw the dummy paperback in print and commented that it looked like a photocopy. Perhaps a copy done on a bad copier?
We also realised that etching was not really done like this and would involve more dots than lines. But either way we considered trying a new way forward. How do we get a cover that would be elegant and attractive?
We considered using the full colour image but this looked too bright and tabloid like. We wanted something more elegant and timeless. We reverted to black and white but without the computerised shading. Many biographical books have black and white images that make the cover image look elegant and timeless. For the lettering of the title we would use gold to add a spark of colour and sheen. This would give the effect of preciousness to the lessons learned from Pastor. We searched online and found many biographies using black and white for the image and a splash of colour in the lettering. And so we arrived at the final cover.