“Meet Raven…”

“Meet Raven, a spirited young girl…” is how author Davis Endava launches us into this electrifying fantasy world of nature consciousness.

Designed for a middle-grade audience, this cover and interior engage the reader, offering easy readability in this quick novella.

Creative Brief

Originally specified as a 62-page “novelette” for fourth through middle grade, author Davis Endava suggested that illustrator Lily Abrams create the cover art. The publisher tasked me with working with the illustrator to create the cover, as well as building the interior layout and typesetting the short book.

Designed to appeal to young adult readers with a blend of fantasy nature and environmental themes, the bulk of the task of the visual emphasis was on the illustrator, Lily Abrams. As I often do to help guide illustrators, I provided her with a type-only “blank” cover to work from to help guide the cover composition.

Design Process


We made a couple of rounds of revisions to correct the coloring on the front cover. Then, I used Photoshop to extend the background to wrap Lily’s art around to the back cover.

The light blue field of Lily’s cover and the pastel colors of the animals in the title character’s vision offered a gentle, appropriately feminine feel to the cover.

With the final art, I revised my title typography to use a more playful font and created a custom lockup—the “Ra” in Raven and the “C” in Calls create an interesting interaction that I didn’t want to overemphasize but that is meant to help make the title the dominant element of the cover.


I brought that same aesthetic to the interior with an initial drop cap “S” in the same font. Since there is only that one opening page in the book, I also wanted to keep it fun by incorporating one of illustrator Lily’s illustrated fish, isolated from the cover art and converted to greyscale.

This book is a single narrative, with no chapter breaks, but the text has several pauses. I created a custom divider graphic based on the cover art background fish for these.

Overall, this light design should appeal to young readers, hinting at the magical story inside.