PLEASE MAKE SURE TO READ THE CONTEST DISCUSSION BEFORE SUBMITTING WORK for a better explanation of what I am specifically looking for outside of completely original designs. You might save yourself a ton of work. :)
I need both a cover for a paperback novel--to be formatted on Createspace--AND an e-book cover. The e-book cover and the front cover of the paperback will be the same thing, obviously.
My book is set in post-Apartheid South Africa in 1995, and the plot revolves around the reality that many "healers" in Africa believe that the body parts of people with Albinism contain supernatural healing properties. Because of the fact that many Albino people are dying and being maimed by people in the "black market" trying to "harvest" their body parts to sell to the healers, the government decides that they need to intervene, and they set up sanctuaries for the Albino children. BUT because of the fact that the children that need protection from the "black market harvesters" in these sanctuaries (I call them compounds--they are very similar to prisons with huge concrete walls and barbed wire around the top) are all mostly poor, the government decides to use the children themselves as a way to pay for their own protection. They set up "humane harvest laws" that allow them to "harvest" the children humanely--taking their hair, dead skin, and nails and selling them to the black market.
My story alternates every chapter from the stories of two young women, but the cover art should focus on one of my main characters--Tabitha--a 15 year old young girl with albinism that has lived within the compound walls for her entire life. She is albino. She has crystal blue eyes--almost devoid of color completely. She is thin. She is beautiful. And she is completely bald from harvest. (Even being devoid of eyebrows and eyelashes on the cover would be fine, but isn't necessary.) Also, any artwork of Tabitha herself would need to be racially ambiguous--at least to where the reader isn't certain whether she is white or black just from looking at the cover. I purposefully don't tell the reader what race that Tabitha is until later in the book.
Another HUGE symbol in the book is a tree that is all over Pretoria, South Africa called the Jacaranda tree. This tree has blue and purple flowers that bloom every year in October. These trees are considered a nuisance in Pretoria, but they are BEAUTIFUL. Pretoria is actually known as the Jacaranda City, but it is actually illegal to plant or sell these trees within the city limits. These trees are a symbol for the children in the compound--they are unwanted, but they are beautiful.
Anyway, for the style of the book cover, I want the artwork to either involve Tabitha (specifically her face, eyes (or eye),and bald head, but open to other ideas too) or the Jacaranda trees (specifically the shedding of the flowers of the Jacaranda trees, might be a cool thought) or both. You could also incorporate surgical tools, or knives, or scissors, or razors (I experimented with a mosaic of these tools in one of my preliminary designs) or barbed wire.
I'm looking for something feminine with the artwork--I LOVE WATERCOLOR, or the look of PEN and WATERCOLOR together. But I also like "roughness" as well. Something that merges the femininity of a watercolor painting with the roughness and darkness of the book. I love "scratchy" handwritten, dark font in contrast with a more feminine artwork. But I'm open to other ideas as well.
I will need to put my title, BLUE, on the cover, obviously, and my name "Kasey Jackson."
On the back cover, I will need my cover blurb:
"A thriving black market—fueled by healers convinced of their supernatural medicinal properties—created an uncontrollable demand for the most grisly commodity to obtain—
the body parts of the colorless people.
After the murder and maiming of countless people afflicted with Albinism, the South African government realized that they had to intervene. Out of the desire to protect even the poorest of the afflicted people, the Humane Harvest Compounds were established.
Fifteen years later, in a rapidly changing post-Apartheid nation, Anytha and Tabitha—two young women living completely different lives—are found questioning the motives of those in power, setting their minds to look beyond their spotless reputations, good deeds, and popularity—unaware that what they discover may make them question what they believe about life itself." (with an emphasis on "the body parts of the colorless people.)
It would be especially nice to see someone incorporate a Jacaranda tree into the back cover, and focus on Tabitha for the front cover.
Also, I would like for the color scheme of the book to only involve the colors in the "blue" realm. Blues and purples, and black and white. And I will probably prefer a mostly white background over a black or dark background.
The book is pretty dark. Most of my readers say that they can't put it down. I just want something that can do it justice. Looking forward to seeing what you come up with.