Friday, October 25, 2013

Cover Artist/Author Interview

When Book Three of The Maine Shore Chronicles, my Five Star hard cover trilogy, needed a new cover for eBook publication, I decided to ask cover artist, Patty Henderson to design it as a Boxed Set for the series. You can see the tiny covers she had already designed for the first two books on spines of the boxed set.
I was so comfortable in the working process of these covers I decided to let other authors know about this talented woman via: 
An Interview with Cover Designer / Author Patty Henderson
  by  Mary F. Schoenecker 

Question: Did your career start as an author or a book cover artist? 

I have often been asked how I got to be an author and a book cover artist as well.  I began to write in the 1960’s. I loved comic books and decided I would do a “treatment” for DCComics for a new comic book hero. I wrote the entire back story and a new comic book featuring my new superhero. I even did an amateurish drawing to go with it. I remember it being a supernatural type hero that used a pendant for his power focus. Needless to say, I did not become a successful comic book artist or writer. 

Question: Other than comic books, what inspired your writing?

I discovered Edgar Allen Poe. The love for Poe’s work led me to write short stories in the supernatural mystery vein. My short stories were published in fanzines of the 70’s. Life intervened and I stopped writing until I could no longer contain my inspiration to write a novel. 

Question: When did you write your first novel and was it a similar genre theme?

In 1995 I wrote my first vampire novel, but my bigger success came with the Brenda Strange Supernatural Mystery series. The first book, THE BURNING OF HER SIN was published in 2002 by Barclay Books. That was quickly followed by the second, third and fourth books in the series, TANGLED AND DARK, THE MISSING PAGE and XIMORA. 

Question: How can readers get your books?

All my books are available as Kindle eBooks and trade paperbacks at and ePub eBooks at Barnes and Noble.

Question: Can you tell us how you got started with Cover Designing ?

I learned how to draw from my father. That eventually led to working fourteen years in a photographic studio where I honed my skills as a digital artist with Photoshop, learning to  create art using the computer. Once the studio closed shop and I found myself without a job, I made the decision to freelance on my own and began creating custom book covers for small publishers and independent authors. 

Question: Will you share a little about the creative  process of Cover Art and Design?

Creating book covers  isn’t just choosing a photograph or artwork from a royalty-free site and getting creative with it. As an artist I use the painting and blending and other tools in Photoshop, combined with artistic elements such as backgrounds and textures to create a cover that is like a digital painting. Sometimes I incorporate up to five or six images and/or textures to create one book cover. 

Question: Is their much interaction between the author and you the designer?

Yes. I feel blessed that I can work with authors  to help them create the vision they want for their books. As an author myself, I bring the added recognition of how important a book cover can be and how to help the author bring out the right imagery to create impact for their book via the right book cover. It is a win win for both author and artist, and much reward and satisfaction for me.
I’m always excited to meet new authors who need book covers and I invite you to check out my graphic art web site, Boulevard Photographica, the name of my graphic freelance work. I will work with any author and/or publisher in creating the book cover you have dreamed of. 

Author web site:






Jacqueline Seewald said...

Hi, Mary and Patty,

This is a wonderfully informative interview. Patty, I've read about the wonderful work you've done for many authors. With so many independent writers now wanting a professional look to their books, your work can only increase in demand. Wishing you continued success.

Susan Oleksiw said...

Thanks for sharing your process and so much good information. As a writer, I stand (sit?) in awe of the way designers can translate a story idea into a single cover image.

Mary F. Schoenecker said...

Jacquie and Susan, I am happy to know that you both value the information about cover art and the synchronization between author and artist.

Patty G. Henderson said...

Thank you, Mary, for the great interview and the chance to talk about my book cover creations.

I do want to point out that the links to both my author web site and my book cover web site are wrong. I've sent you my correct links and hope you can correct them.

Here are the correct links:

Joan Reeves said...

Thank you for sharing your process. It's always interesting to hear how someone goes about bringing a vision into fruition.

Mary F. Schoenecker said...

So sorry about the errors in your websites I will explain how that happened in an email to you. I believe I have corrected them, now. Try author expressions again and see if they are correct.

Peg Brantley said...

Patty has designed all three of my book covers and I love each one of them. She has an intuitive ability to put together just the right elements.

Patty G. Henderson said...

Thanks to Jacqueline, Susan, Peg and Joan. Peg, it has been a complete pleasure to create the artwork for your books. You put so much into your work that it's important to have a book cover creator that appreciates how much of her own soul is left in each page of a book.