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Please help! All of my ebook book covers are Pixelated

Feb 25, 2013 5:58 AM

Tags: #illustrator #cs5 #pixelated #ebook #book #cover #adobe_illustrator #jpg #blurry

I created ebook book covers by using Adobe Illustrator. It looks great in print form. But when I save using the Save for Web Devices as a jpg they become all pixelated. You can see what I mean by going to www.amazon.com  or www.barnesandnoble.com and typing in my name- Melissa Perry Moraja. They look awful. What am I doing wrong? I've tried so many things like increasing the resolution and shrinking the size of the file and increasing the pixels. I'm trying to create professional book covers with the top of the line graphic softward, but something isn't working.  Here's a direct link... http://www.barnesandnoble.com/c/melissa-perry-moraja

 
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Feb 25, 2013 6:07 AM   in reply to MommyFavorites

    they look fine for the size they're displayed at, as far as i can see. is there a larger view where you can clearly see pixelation that i'm missing?

     

    so, at the risk of stating the obvious: pixelating is what saving things as JPEGs does. what size/resolution are they exported at? is amazon or whoever's own web submission software perhaps shrinking them further itself? does the JPEG you make from illustrator look vastly different from the image you see on amazon?

     
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    Feb 25, 2013 7:39 AM   in reply to MommyFavorites

    There are artifacts, especially in the reds. Common for jpg compression. Try exporting them with best quality or save them as PNGs which is lossless (and if Amazon/B&N accept PNGs.

     

    Mike

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Feb 26, 2013 10:55 AM   in reply to MommyFavorites

    there are a couple of things you can do:

     

    - choose a legible font

    - be careful with effects (and even the fat outline can ruin legiblity)

    - create a non-messy background

    - increase contrast between background and text

    - make the headline larger

    - choose correct compression options for JPEG

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Feb 26, 2013 11:16 AM   in reply to MommyFavorites

    You can upload a sample (or working) file to dropbox.com or wikisend.com and provide a link for any one of us to look at. It really is the best means of obtaining specific aid.

     

    Mike

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Feb 26, 2013 1:29 PM   in reply to MommyFavorites

    there should be a series of icons when you are in dropbox.com and after clicking on the file you uploaded up next to the search field. One of which is Share Link.

     

    If you are at the folder level, the same link says Share Folder.

     

    Mike

     
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    Feb 26, 2013 1:31 PM   in reply to MommyFavorites

    Got it. I'll be back in a little bit.

     

    Take care, Mike

     
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    Feb 26, 2013 1:40 PM   in reply to MommyFavorites

    BTW, what are the requirements for B&N and/or Amazon for the image files?

     

    Mike

     
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    Feb 26, 2013 2:41 PM   in reply to MommyFavorites

    Hah. I skipped over the Amazon part even though I read and wrote Amazon...

     

    The link is to a resized version. I use it for the Kindle submissions. The export to web should be set up but I also included a screen shot of the relevant bit of the export dialog.

     

    Should be a fine size for B&N as well.

     

    http://www.wenzloffandsons.com/temp/madison.zip

     

    Take care, Mike

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Feb 26, 2013 3:31 PM   in reply to MommyFavorites

    The dimensions were off. I have uploaded another ZIP that has both setup sizes. One for Amazon and one for B&N. Because the B&N site requests a smaller cover size for the long dimension, I made one for that size as well. Both are identified by the names. If I were making these and submitting to both services, I would probably just use the one identified for B&N for also using at Amazon.

     

    And I would also save as a new name, delete the art and save as a template using a name that makes sense to you and use that template for resizing your present covers and for future ones as well.

     

    http://www.wenzloffandsons.com/temp/madison2.zip

     

    is the new ZIP.

     

    In the future, it really helps to set up the document according to a spec. In your case, the B&N sizing restriction is simply 2000 px for the long edge. So the B&N version is using 1200 px by 2000 px which is relatively proportional to the Amazon spec of 1563 px x 2500 px. By setting up the AI document for the lowest denomiator (B&N) the covers should look the same on both sites.

     

    Do note that Amazon (and likely B&N) further compress the uploaded JPG. So always use the highest quality for the JPG compression. As you can see from the JPG I did include in the first ZIP, it holds up well to various sizes. So depending on how Amazon is doing there resizing for the web site, they should still look good when they make the thumbnail and lightbox versions during their conversions.

     

    Take care, Mike

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Feb 27, 2013 4:29 AM   in reply to MommyFavorites

    can you point out another cover on amazon that you think looks picture perfect? cause i think this is just going to turn out to be amazon's own compression.

     

    plus the max dimension of any image i can view on amazon is 500px, and at that size i can only just about see artefacts, the text is legible and the lines are pretty clear.

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Feb 27, 2013 4:40 AM   in reply to MommyFavorites

    well that one is 1200 pixels high!

     

    i can see the same sort of artefacts in it when i zoom in too, it's pretty clear in the white around the figure. the other books you mentioned (the magic tree house & dr. seuss) display the same kind of compression. it's got to be amazon's own software.

     
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    Feb 27, 2013 4:48 AM   in reply to MommyFavorites

    wimpykid.png

    check the space around the white

     
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    Feb 27, 2013 5:06 AM   in reply to MommyFavorites

    It isn't the fonts, it isn't even the colors used. Are you certain that the new images have taken effect?

     

    Your images are being resized more then the Wimpy kid cover. Why is a question for Amazon. Your Madison cover is half the size of the Wimpy kid cover image. Again, the why is what I do not know.

     

    Mike

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Feb 27, 2013 5:15 AM   in reply to MW Design

    are there different 'levels' of amazon seller account maybe, that let you use larger images? all other books in my (small) selection size use 500px images

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Feb 27, 2013 6:33 AM   in reply to MommyFavorites

    Doug may be right. Perhaps export for the web at the actual size of your large image will work.

     

    http://www.wenzloffandsons.com/temp/milissa/

     

    Mike

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Feb 28, 2013 4:27 AM   in reply to MommyFavorites

    is the JPEG you save out of Photoshop or Illustrator showing compression before you upload it to amazon? if so you're doing something wrong. if it's only after, then it's them.

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Feb 28, 2013 4:56 AM   in reply to MommyFavorites

    here's your cover saved to JPEG at max quality straight out of the file Mike uploaded:

     

    http://dougfineart.co.uk/?attachment_id=123

     

    to me it looks as perfect as you're going to get from a jpeg at that resolution. there's no visible artefacts. all i've done is File > Export, JPEG.

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Feb 28, 2013 5:08 AM   in reply to MommyFavorites

    it's at the max dimensions for amazon submission. you can upload that as it is.

     
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    Feb 28, 2013 5:12 AM   in reply to MommyFavorites

    here is is at 500px.

     

    http://dougfineart.co.uk/?attachment_id=124

     

    i think you're imagining things if you still think other amazon covers are better at that size.

     
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