Re-Covered Books: ‘The Great Gatsby’

Re-Covered Books

I’ve been excited to start a new competition for a while. A kind of project that would be enjoyable for me to curate and would engage you as a creative person. Offhand, I mentioned on Twitter that it would be interesting to have readers create their own covers for books. So, I’m presenting the newest The Fox Is Black competition: Re-Covered Books. The idea is simple: create a cover for a book I choose and the winner gets a $100 gift card to Amazon. Sound good?

The first book we’ll be re-covering is The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald. I wanted to start with an American classic that was well regarded by many and I feel like The Great Gatsby has a lot of rich imagery that will translate well to a cover. Do a Google search of “The Great Gatsby Book Cover” and you get a lot of variations, some of which I’ve posted above for inspiration. The one I’m most familiar with is the top left one, with the flapper looking girl with a tear rolling down her face, superimposed over Coney Island. But, my favorite is the simple Alvin Lustig cover with the giant dollar sign: clean and beautiful.

The competition will judged by myself, Danica, and Alex with one grand prize winner taking the cake. I’d love to see you take this project and really creating something remarkable. My suggestion would be to print out a full dust jacket and wrap it around a book you own. The size and shape are up to you and your taste. The more effort you take, the better your chance to win. I’ll be posting all of the entries in a separate post and a link in the sidebar so you can check in to see what’s new. Here are the details:

• Size and shape are completely up to you: the more inventive, the better. It does need to be a book though. No electronics!

• Send all entries to thefoxisblack@gmail.com with the subject “Re-Covered Books: The Great Gatsby“. Just cut and paste what I wrote there. It’s super easy and it helps me keep track of entries.

• All entries are due January 28th, 2011 by Midnight, PST. That gives nearly 3 weeks to create something for the competition.

If you have any other questions, feel free to leave them in the comments. I hope a lot of you participate, as I think this could be a really fun competition and your work could get noticed by some really cool people. Good luck!

Maxime Francout

Maxime Francout

Ian O’Phelan

Ian O’Phelan

Conor Bateman

Kris Merbach


Heath D. Wiliiams

Heath D. Williams

Matthew Gore

Matthew Gore

Julien Dalard

Julien Dalard

Julien Dalard

Julien Dalard

Julien Dalard

Julien Dalard

Julien Dalard

Julien Dalard

Malik Tarhouni

Malik Tarhouni

Mike Arnold

Mike Arnold

Philipp Dornbrierer

Philipp Dornbrierer

Hans Peterse

Hans Peterse

Kjell Roger Ringstad

Kjel Roger Ringstad

Rob Zbrezny

Rob Zbrezny

Ryan Vance

Ryan Vance

Ryan Vance

Wade Greenberg-Brand

Wade Greenberg-Brand

Heath D. Williams

Heath D. Williams

Heath D. Williams

Ryan Bradley

Ryan Bradley

Kelly Chia

Kelly Chia

Bryce Wilner

Bryce Wilner

Bryce Wilner

Bryce Wilner

Joe McDermott

Joe McDermott

Patrick McWain

Patrick McWain

Caree Michel

Caree Michel

Caree Michel

Caree Michel

Caree Michel

Hannes Beer

Hannes Beer

Callie Logan

Callie Logan

Luke Chamberlin

Luke Chamberlin

Sean Patrick

Sean Patrick

Sean Patrick

Sean Patrick

Sara Andreasson

Sara Andreasson

Sara Andreasson

Alex Gelmers

Alex Gelmers

Aled Lewis

Aled Lewis

Mason Plunkett

Mason Plunkett

Mason Plunkett

Mason Plunkett

Mason Plunkett

Mason Plunkett

Patricia Kirsch

Patricia Kirsch

Patricia Kirsch

Scott Alexander

Scott Alexander

Tiffany Chen

Tiffany Chen

Levi McGranahan

Levi McGranahan

Levi McGranahan

Kendra Dandy

Kendra Dandy

Dennis Kapell

Dennis Kapell

Ryan Collier

Ryan Collier

Ryan Collier

Paul Delaurier

Paul Delaurier

Naomi Sloman

Naomi Sloman

Naomi Sloman

Thanh Vu

Thanh Vu

Thanh Vu

Thanh Vu

Thanh Vu

Matt Buceri

Matt Buceri

Rosanna Matz

Rosanna Matz

Rosanna Matz

Lauren Fundora

Lauren Fundora

Lauren Fundora

Jennifer Matos

Jennifer Matos

Kathryn Corlett

Kathryn Corlett

Charlotte Audrey Owen-Meehan

Charlotte Audrey Owen-Meehan

Ryan Lake

Ryan Lake

Ryan Lake

Elizabeth M. Berg

Elizabeth M. Berg

Elizabeth M. Berg

Elizabeth M. Berg

Sean Barry

Sean Barry

Sean Barry

Sean Barry

Daniel Gies

Daniel Gies

Ally Berke

Ally Berke

Nicola Turville

Nicolla Turville

James Martin

James Martin

James Martin

James Martin

James Martin

Emilee Ellis

Emilee Ellis

ene13

ene13

Jenny Trygg

Jenny Trygg

Jenny Trygg

Lisa Shininger

Lisa Shininger

Steven Blumenthal

Steven Blumenthal

Sal Renwick

Sal Renwick

Sal Renwick

Sal Renwick

Rae Drake

Rae Drake

Brandon Waybright

Brandon Waybright

Patrick Jordan

Patrick Jordan

Steve Boyland

Steve Boyland


Joshua Orr

Joshua Orr

Joshua Orr

Joshua Orr

Hiller Goodspeed

Hiller Goodspeed

Bobby

42 Comments Re-Covered Books: ‘The Great Gatsby’

  1. Bianca January 10, 2011 at 3:33 PM

    This is a fantastic idea. And what an awesome book to start with. I can’t wait to see the entries.

  2. Sara Katt January 10, 2011 at 3:49 PM

    I love this! It’s actually quite a coincidence that I watched the movie from 1974 just yesterday. I feel really inspired now.

  3. Steve Love January 10, 2011 at 6:12 PM

    One of my favorite books. Can’t wait to see how this turns out. Also, helps me to ignore the upsetting news today that Baz Luhrman is considering making his upcoming Gatsby film in 3D.

  4. Miggy Pascual January 11, 2011 at 2:00 AM

    1. What do you mean by no electronics? You can’t use the computer to make your entry, is that right?
    2. If a winner is from abroad or outside the U.S., how are you gonna send the prize?

    Thanks! I like to join this contest!

  5. Kyla January 11, 2011 at 2:33 AM

    This will be fun! How many book covers are we allowed to submit?

  6. Erin G January 11, 2011 at 5:27 AM

    Aaah! What an amazing collision of worlds! Design and Literature. I’m an English teacher and I’m soooooo going have my students “vote” on this too.

  7. Bobby SolomonBobby Solomon January 11, 2011 at 3:13 PM

    @Steve Love – 1) I mean no mocking it up on an iPad or anything like that. Make it look like a book.

    2) If the winner is outside of America and has no access to Amazon than we’ll figure something else out :)

    @Kyla – As many as you like, I suppose. If you submit like 10 I might cut you off, haha…

  8. Steve Love January 11, 2011 at 5:16 PM

    Bobby, I think you meant @Miggy in that response. :)

  9. Figgy January 12, 2011 at 1:26 PM

    So into this, just studying the book at the moment. Super psyched for some cross-curricular work.

  10. J Dubbs January 12, 2011 at 4:24 PM

    great idea! i’m really excited to see the submissions :]

  11. Abby K January 13, 2011 at 1:24 PM

    i’m still confused about the format- so it can be a photoshop file? or do you want a photo of it on an actual book?
    this is a great idea by the way.

  12. Bobby SolomonBobby Solomon January 14, 2011 at 12:46 PM

    @YMFY – LOL.

    @Abby K – The preferred format would be a JPG. See the entires above for some ideas.

  13. Kjell-Roger January 24, 2011 at 11:10 AM

    Bryce Wilner’s is my favourite so far. Aled Lewis’ on a close second.

    Alot of good entries here. Good choice of contest Bobby, really!

  14. Andrew Morrison January 24, 2011 at 11:19 AM

    There are some gorgeous entries here. Good job!

  15. Tyler January 24, 2011 at 11:19 AM

    Yehteh/Philipp/Amazing

  16. FV January 24, 2011 at 11:23 AM

    Bryce Wilner’s, Julien Dalard’s, and Hannes Beer’s are absolutely stunning—but I’m with Kjell, Bryce’s is my favorite.

  17. Shawn Khan January 24, 2011 at 3:11 PM

    Yeah I agree with Kjell: Bryce and Aled have the best ones. The only thing with Bryce’s is the bookshelf at the top – I think it would’ve been better without it. I think Aled’s is my favorite with Bryce a close second.

  18. Will January 24, 2011 at 3:56 PM

    My favourite is Bryce’s or Sara’s.
    I don’t get Sean Patrick’s at all! No references to the book, unless I’m missing something… and a very dated style. Not even the cool 20’s style that would match the book.
    Glad to see so many green light references but surprised that there aren’t more Egg ones.
    One of my favourite books and a great idea, just wish I had some design skills so I could have done one :(

  19. Will January 24, 2011 at 3:59 PM

    Oh, also Ryan Vances! I forgot that one but it’s brilliant.

  20. Bobby SolomonBobby Solomon January 24, 2011 at 4:08 PM

    @Will – It’s funny, I actually enjoy Sean’s because it doesn’t stick to the cliché of 20’s style design.

  21. AC January 24, 2011 at 4:47 PM

    Agreed. Huge fan of Sean Patrick’s work. Unique design, new approach, willing to take a risk.

    All I gotta say is, it’s the whip.

  22. Will January 24, 2011 at 4:47 PM

    @Bobby – I think for a book so rooted in it’s age that to randomly use a psychedelic 60’s style as your base. The book was iconic of the Jazz Age and to not at least nod to that seems a shame.
    Alternately Luke Chamberlin or Conor Batemans’ designs don’t rely heavily on the 20’s style, they’re both quite modern, and both incorporate strong imagery based in the book which is why they both stand out to me.
    I think it’s the complete lack of that, unless I’m missing a reference in Sean’s design, that makes me think you could use it for almost any book.

  23. Sara Katt January 25, 2011 at 7:11 AM

    The results are really impressive! I think I like the one by Aled Lewis the best. That’s the one I’d like to see on my coffee table. Reminds me a bit of Don Draper though.

  24. Patricia January 25, 2011 at 7:41 PM

    what a fun project! So glad to have the opportunity to read the novel again, I enjoyed it so much more than I did in high school, i think the relationships in it are a bit too complicated for high school students. All the entries look amazing!

  25. sean patrick January 26, 2011 at 7:52 PM

    mason’s is amazing. holy smokes.

  26. Garrett Vander Leun January 28, 2011 at 2:17 AM

    Hate this book. Hate it. Love your new competition. Love it.

  27. Katie January 28, 2011 at 6:10 AM

    Ryan Collier + Thanh Vu!

  28. Josh January 28, 2011 at 9:08 AM

    Eclectic and fantastic.

  29. Josh January 28, 2011 at 12:21 PM

    James Martin!

  30. Annie January 28, 2011 at 12:50 PM

    James Martin’s is the bomb!!!!!

  31. baby meatball January 28, 2011 at 1:29 PM

    james martin. clean, crisp, and intriguing. just like gatsby would’ve seen it.

  32. else January 28, 2011 at 2:32 PM

    a lot of these entries are beautiful and well-designed.

    at the same time, i wonder if maybe the motifs introduced in the book could have been used with more subtlety in these new book cover designs. however, i do understand that using these simple images gives across a clear message of “this can only be the great gatsby.”

    anyway, i would like to cast my vote for mason plunkett’s design w/ the red cover & silhouette of gatsby & his mansion. the reference to the green light is perfect, and the quotation on the back is equally great.

  33. marc January 29, 2011 at 1:07 AM

    hannes’, aled’s and rosanna’s!
    james martins’ looks like it’s about the illuminati.

  34. nicolas January 29, 2011 at 1:21 AM

    haha, marc is right! what are you up to, james?
    also i think, that rosanna’s design is the only one, that includes the rear in a creative way. other than that there are many great entries, got to be hard to pick one.

  35. Patricia January 29, 2011 at 9:51 AM

    this would be even more interesting if people had included an explanation of the imagery they used in their design. Since, while I think many of the designs are absolutely gorgeous, I don’t fully understand why certain design choices were made.

  36. Kim January 29, 2011 at 12:03 PM

    James – so lovely. Beautifully done :)

  37. Justin January 31, 2011 at 12:24 AM

    Super disappointed that nobody employed Gatsby’s self-improvment list. That said, there’s good stuff here.

  38. Steven Blumenthal January 31, 2011 at 8:42 AM

    Justin, brilliant idea. Wish I had thought of that.

  39. Andy O'Bryan March 3, 2011 at 3:19 PM

    Aled’s is my favorite. There are many others here that have done an incredible job as well.

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