S.R. Johannes's Untraceable is out this month -- it's a young adult wilderness thriller with a missing father, a kick-butt heroine, and, of course, two hot boys. S.R. and cover photographer Vania talked to me about how the cover came to be: Shelli: I always had a cover in mind from when I first starting writing the book. Something about a girl hiding in the woods. But Vania made it come to life.
Vania: We wanted something that obscured the girl but yet it drew you in.
Shelli: We wanted to use a real life model. I think stock photos are great but to me – we wanted that feeling of being in the woods. Of Grace hiding, and I think Vania got that. There is nothing like an original artwork.
Vania: There’s something to be said for having something on your cover that is just yours. Plus this way we can control more of what the model looked like, where we shot, and what the shot looked like. [Here's a mockup, left.]
Shelli: Vania sent out a casting call and our model was one that responded. The minute I saw her picture, I knew she was the one. She is Grace in a nutshell. They tromped off into a wooded park area with lots of greenery and got great shots (one draft is shown, left).
Vania: I naturally just shoot as I see opportunity so we ended up with so much more shots we could have used.
Shelli: I love this cover! It is everything I wanted it to be. Grace is a nature girl and the book is a thriller. I think this captures that. Perfectly.
Thanks, you guys! I think the final cover is lovely--the colors pop and the themes of nature and mystery really come through.
What do you guys think?