I'm not very good with graphics. I've noticed the graphics tools are pretty hard to use for a newbie like me.
You can imagine that I was very pleased when I figured out a way to create a nice looking cover using ONLY Apple Pages and the Apple Preview that are on an Apple Mac.
I recorded it into a youtube video. If you don't see the video below, you might need to click on the link to take you to this original article and view in your browser.
For those who like to read, here is the transcript:
Hello Fitty Friends.
I thought I'd show you how to make a cover for a book using Apple Pages. I'm not an artist, so what I'm going to do isn't necessarily very artistic. But, it shows you how to do it, right? So, let's go. I'm using an Apple, so, well, get used to it.
First things first, let's get some Pages going. Let's go into Pages. This is the book I just did. Let's start from the very beginning. Let's do
“File”, “New”. Let's just do “Blank”. Okay. The next thing I want to do is let's save just so it gets saved.
Let's go to eproducts. This really isn't an eproduct. That's just where I put it. Making a cover using Apple Pages. Let's call it Making a Cover for Pages. Let's go ahead and save this document here.
The first and most important thing is let's do view, show thumbnails. We've got one page. Let's insert a new page. Oops, didn't mean to do that. Insert page break. I'm looking right at it, aren't I? Right in front of all of you. That's how I do it. I can not see how to do page break. Insert a page break. I don't know why that didn't show up. I'm going to do page break.
Now we've got two pages. Now, the most important thing is we're going to make this page one. I probably didn't need to do that, but let's do it like that.
The first thing is I think covers… I mean I'm not going to be an artist here. Kind of boring without some color behind them. We'll do shape. Let's just pick something nonthreatening, green. You pick with the square corners, because we're going to go to the very corners of the document. See here how it said it was at zero, zero.
The other thing to remember when you're doing this is stay on page. This makes it so it doesn't move with the text. Otherwise, it'll really get funky.
Let's see here, 8 by 11 is what we want that to read. That ought to do it. It's a little off. Let's take it all the way to the edge.
Let's zoom out a little. Zoom out, zoom out, so now we can see the whole page. Let's go down here. Now we've got a green thing. Let's do… You can have a lot of fun with this. All shapes you can put text in, so let's do this.
I'm really bad at colors. Let's make it baby bottom yellow. Let's do a band down at the bottom. Then, what you can do is if you just double click here it'll know about text and put by rv52.com, founder, Marlan Winter.
Almost all book titles you've got a byline in there, so you're going to have to make this a lot bigger. Make it bold. Let's say you're more successful than me, you might want to be on, you know, a bookshelf. They want people to be able to see it's you.
You're going to have to brand yourself. I don't know about any of that stuff, but I do think that stuff's kind of important.
You can pick whatever you font what you want. I'll just leave Helvetica. Now you've got that.
I've noticed a lot of books like to do a band across the top, so let's just do that. Humans like symmetry. Let's have some fun. The Ultimate Guide… I don't know how to spell ultimate. I don't know how to type it for sure. The Ultimate Guide to… I can type 7000 words a minute, but if I correct for spelling, about 20. The Ultimate Guide to Making an Apple Pages Book Cover without Buying Any New Software.
Yay. That's a pretty good goal. We can make this a little bit bigger. Let's make it 24. Now, see, you've got a little shadow in there. You can decide if that looks good or not. Let's play with it just a little. I think it adds a little depth in my opinion. This one probably ought to have a shadow above it, but I don't know. Let's just leave that like that.
Okay. Now, let's put a title on it, and let's make the title… Well, we know what the title is, right? I like shapes better, so that's for the title. Let's do… See, this is really, really ugly. Ugly. But, again, I'm just trying to show you how to make a cover, so I'm trying to make some visual interest on this.
Now on this one, Creating eBooks Using eBook Covers Using Apple Pages, that's got to be monster. Whatever we did before, we've got to make it bigger. I think most really artistic people would say this is way too busy. I'd agree with them.
But, again, this is just showing you how. Not necessarily how to make a good one, just how to make one. I'm showing you how you have a lot of capability.
Just to give you an idea, look at this. You can go into this. You can go into the fill. You can go into an advanced image fill, for example, and you can say advanced gradient fill. You can say look, I want like a sun in the center. Then, out here I'm going to make it 100% opaque or transparent.
You can move this to the side here. Then, you take this little thing. You do that and it gives just a little bit of color and a merge. Then, you can mute that color just a little bit by even doing an opacity as well so it's not as… that just gives a little brush of color. I don't know how that would come out on printing and all that.
This is what I did last time. I thought it was kind of cute. I mean honestly I probably want to mute that even more. Maybe move this. Yeah. Maybe make that just a little less intense. Just want a smattering just to kind of draw some visual interest to it. I mean, again, this isn't how to do a good cover. I'd be the last person to say that.
Let's go get a graphic and drop a graphic in here. Here's my logo for my… Oops. Don't want to do that. Why did that do that? Oh. Undo. Okay. I think the reason it did that has… Let's see if we can fix it.
I want to drop this in here. I'm going to call this… First off, let's make this bigger. Let's go to image. Let's do instant alpha on this. That tells you what parts will be see-through.
Okay. We're done there. We've got to find that sucker. All right, let's just for kicks and grins arrange this, stay on page, automatic, around. Let's move this bad boy backwards, back. I want to solve this for you right in front of your eyes. [Inaudible 0:11:22].
All right. Green is pretty ugly, isn't it? It was a bad time in America. There you go. I must've just replaced it, which is kind of silly. I like how this holds the… A really interesting cover probably would use asymmetry to make it more interesting [Inaudible 0:12:01]. So, the alpha made it see-through.
Now, let's go to the fun part. To get the cover into the format you want now you just do export to PDF. Okay. Make the image quality best. Let's call it Making a Cover PDF. I don't think we need Pages any more, so let's quit that.
Really only do this kind of stuff with the Apple. It's so hard on a Windows computer. You can do it. People do it all the time. But, you get a lot of this just built in. I mean you do pay for pages, but you don't pay for preview which is a completely underappreciated piece of software. So, preview's PDF.
Now we'll do export on the PDF. We'll say I don't want to export this sucker to a JPEG. Do 300 pixels per inch. And, we'll do that. Lo and behold you have an image, 2.7 megabyte image, with really good dimensions you can use to do all sorts of things.
There you go. There's how you make an image from Apple Pages. I didn't have any graphical software, and it had a lot of visual interest. You can do an awful lot of cool things with it. Thank you.