As an author on a tight budget, and when I started it was non-existent, learning to do many of the things others paid for was necessary. One of those was designing my own book covers. Keeping costs low wasn't hard, using programs/sites like Canva and royalty free photos from places like Unsplash, and a cover - though basic- could be easily produced.
But there is a lot more to it that. One needs to understand colour, proportion, and how different fonts work together, complementing each other. Understandbly at first I was not very good. Sure, I had the basics down: name, title and proportions sort of right, but they still looked very amateurish, unable to manipulate images and very dark. Not to mention the struggle to find the right images to convey what the stories were about.
Soon I figured out how to manipulate images a bit more, combining them and altering the colour. But while they definitely looked better, they still didn't feel right.
But I didn't give up. I just pushed myself to learn more and where I didnt know something, got my seventeen year old to help me - for a cost of course.
I learnt a how to use overlays; to remove portions of an image, to use the layer function and change the background using Pixlr. I still need to learn how to blend and manipulate images further... but I'm proud of the way my covers for this series look as well as the others that I'm doing.