Tips for Designing Virtual CD Covers to Get Your Music Noticed

Updated

Are you looking to create a cover design for your music or data CD? When it comes to creating a design for a CD cover, there are two things you need to consider: (1) The technical details and (2) what the actual image should look like.

Before we begin, try going to Amazon.com and keyword search MUSIC CD. What is one thing that you can see right away from the results coming up in your browser? First off, all the images are the same size. If you know how to look at the image properties, you will discover the images are square, 218 x 218 pixels. They will be 72 DPI (dots per inch). Outfits such as Amazon try to have a uniform look, so they set the pixel size and DPI of the image. These technical attributes keep the images with standard size and save on disk space when storing all these images. It also user-friendly, by having the images minimal in size, it saves on bandwidth when sending them over the internet.

Have you ever visited a web site for a band you were interested in only to find their web page to be slow and the images never seemed to load properly? Many times, this is caused by people who uploaded large image files and never considered the need to reduce their images to a size that works well with internet constraints. Not everyone can afford unlimited internet streaming and you don't want to lose customers because they can't get to your web site. If you sell your products through sites such as Amazon, you will be required to follow their technical guidelines. Be aware of this if your skills are limited to editing images.

What else did you notice when browsing through the list of music CD's at Amazon? Were you able to read the titles and text? If you were paying attention to this, some were easy to read while others make you blink and strain hard to view the text. I'm not talking about small fonts, sometimes you want the image to dominate and make a potential buyer stop and look. Some of the CD's will have text in large font sizes but you still can't read them.

Text is much easier to read when it appears with a plain background. Some of the images have graphics behind the text and it all gets jumbled together making it difficult to read. We all judge a book by its cover and people will decide to look at your product or move on in less than a second. The eye provides a huge amount of information and if the viewer can't decipher what they're looking at, the brain will send a reflex signal to the finger on the mouse and scroll on to the next item.

It's up to you and your overall design as to how much text there should be and how large it should be but however you incorporate letters into the overall image, make sure it's easy to read!

When it comes to the actual design or picture, there is no rule of thumb to "do this" and you will be guaranteed to have people stopping to check out your product. Graphic design, marketing, and business people spend their entire careers trying to figure out what sells and how to present a product visually in order to make people stop and look.

This is where online stock images can come to the rescue. Technology has made the camera on your cell phone able to create professional-grade images and pictures, but you're still limited to what's in front of your camera. People who are skilled with composition and image editing provide their images for sale on the internet. Utilizing online stock agencies provide opportunities to purchase high-end photography and digital art at a low cost. You will still need to edit the image for technical requirements but it's usually not that hard to find someone who can help you convert an image to 218 x 218 pixels and 72 DPI.

Good luck and here's to you creating that killer CD cover or product!

Comments
Jimmy M.

Great post! It was indeed a piece of awesome information.