Behind-the-Cover: BETA

Have you entered the Beta Design Challenge yet? Need some inspiration? Check out this behind-the-scenes look at the cover design process for Beta. 

You never know where the spark of design-inspiration for a book cover will come from. In the case for Beta, Marci Senders (Hyperion Teens, Lead Designer) received the initial inspiration from the author Rachel Cohn. Rachel sent reference images of Greek Islands and modern architecture to the editor to illustrate this futuristic world the she created.

Small town in the Greek Isle

The book’s editor, Emily Meehan, and Marci then sat down to brainstorm initial concepts. They knew right away they wanted something clean and sterile but with a twist.

Beta Design Concept 1

Concept 1

Marci had a stock image of a girl photographed from a fish-bowl perspective. She’d been saving the image to use on just the right cover. For the first design concept, she tried out that image and added the flower tattoo (which they wanted to illustrate to match the story). Marci added the brushed metal texture and made the type to look like it had been cut out of the metal.

Beta Design Concept 2

Concept 2

The second concept incorporated the island of Demense, the lush tropical setting for all the books in Rachel’s series. Marci layered a photo of a girl in the background and used a similar type treatment to the first concept.

When Marci presented these two concepts, everyone loved the romantic, simplified cover with the close-up of the girl (concept 1) and requested that it look even more sci-fi. They hired photographer Zach Gold (, who photographed the cover model and illustrated the tattoo.

Beta cover model

Zach added brushed metal textures and made the model’s eyes fushia to make sure that the girl looked unnatural.

Beta final cover

To really illuminate the cover, the jacket was printed on opalescent paper stock and the tattoo is foil with spot gloss

Beta is the first book in the series and it was important to everyone involved to create a strong series branding.

One thought on “Behind-the-Cover: BETA

  1. I remember when I first saw this book, the cover STUNNED me. I thought it was absolutely gorgeous. And now that I’ve read an excerpt, I’m totally glad such an amazing-sounding story got a cover to match. :^D *adds book to never-ending Christmas list*

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