HiRes Label Comp: Theme for August 2014

Hi All,

joaoattitude won our competition for June and July 2014, and has picked our theme for the August competition:

Most Popular Horror Feature Films Here is the IMDb Link.

Each member may submit one or more DVD or Blu-Ray labels for this theme.

There are no limitations on design, and any resources may be used.
If you are not familiar with the complete HLC rules, please read them here.

Please email entries to jazzy.hdcovers@gmail.com by midnight of August 15th (GMT)

Advanced members can vote for their favorite labels, ranking the top 3, starting around August 16th. The member who submits the winning label will receive the HLC medal for one month, have their winning label displayed on the home page, and can choose the title or theme for next month’s competition.
Winning label will be announced on August 25th.

Good luck cheers.gif

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Meet Joe Black

Firstly, please feel free to be as brutal as you like – all input welcome.

I’m out of ideas for this one and require some kind of inspiration. There are plenty of tiny details that can be tinkered with as always but it needs more than that. I’m generally happy with images used but I just haven’t got this cover right yet. There are too many images of Claire and Brad for starters, it needs more variety but I think it needs far more than that, a big change, a complete rethink perhaps? Starting again can feel too much when you think you have the basis of a good idea, can’t it?

Also, I love the lower photo of Claire Forlani looking into the camera – on the back page – but it’s dreadful image quality so needs to go, I just can’t find a decent version. In fact, none of the images are that great really but there is such a dearth of quality stuff available for this title. I have some alternatives but they all suffer the same issue. The studio covers are pretty hideous so a custom design is needed I think.

Try not to waste much time criticising the specification format – please comment on it by all means but, I’d welcome feedback, but – as explained in previous posts, my aim is to eventually personalise my whole collection with this base format, even if it doesn’t necessarily always suit an individual cover. Like it or hate it – it’s not likely to change, I like it in general and I am fairly happy with it here. And what you can’t see is my all titles next to each other in that basic format, which I really like; all being directly comparable. (the space at the bottom is for credits – or maybe the spec block will be moved down instead).

Looking forward to some harsh input here so give it to me, (including and especially from non-designers) don’t be shy, don’t hold back… bootyshake.gif


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(Nearly) New Member

I’ve only just noticed this topic but never mind, better late than never! So I suppose I’m still new enough to call myself a newbie for sure, even though I’ve chatted to some of you already, posted a few threads, contributed nearly a dozen covers over the last six or seven days, and received more than enough downloads to keep me very satisfied indeed (30 something, and all at least once, so I know I’m not a complete muppet). bootyshake.gif

I’d like to think I’ve got a bit of character and a sense of humour (though I guess that’s not really for me to judge, you can decide that for yourselves while I bully my way in). I don’t hold my punches so don’t want you to hold back either – don’t be too PC – say what you want to say, rather than what you think you should say – I have a very thick skin. ico_arcade.gif

Maybe read my profile for my attempt to both amuse you a little, and gently wind some of you up in the process. Note that although it is written tongue-in-cheek, if it does get your goat, then think carefully because maybe you’re one of the people I’m talking about!!!

I don’t particularly expect my design style to be especially popular amongst other designers, but if you understand the message in my profile that should not necessarily be a surprise. I do however expect to get my fair share of downloads from regular members (so far that’s proving to be the case but this could just be a lucky blip – beginners luck?). I’m very happy with my style, so am not particularly looking to improve as such, and believe it’s an indication of my design preferences, not my design limitations. You are welcome to disagree, and I’m happy for you to say so.

What I want from a cover is clean, clear artwork, with recognisable iconography, nothing flash! Modified poster art is usually more than good enough for me. Simple not clever, so long as transitions are smooth, nothing clunky. And if mine is better than the studio cover, then not only have I achieved my initial goal but, why shouldn’t I expect a good deal of replacement downloads? I have a large DVD collection but because of the way I buy them (see this thread http://www.hirescovers.net/forum/index.php?showtopic=19387) they mostly need new labels. So, like it or not, I’ll be adapting everything I download of yours, to suit my own personalised spec, and designing new ones where there’s nothing suitable (or nothing to my liking). I was anticipating asking some of you if I could re-post some of the adaptations but it’s starting to look like that might not be a popular request so that idea has been put on the shelf (for now at least).

I don’t post designs that I’m not pretty happy with at the time, but that’s not to say I don’t think they couldn’t be improved, or that I don’t think of improvements myself after posting. But I want to get on to the next one to complete my personal collection. My point is: I don’t want to spend ages designing the perfect cover but I would more than welcome constructive criticism. It may not be obvious from my design style but for a good while I worked using 3DStudio Max, producing photorealistic 3d modelling (the sort of thing that’s basic movie CGI nowadays, but back then was field leading). In our industry “Photoshop” was a byword for “cheap and nasty”. I don’t mean to offend so apologies if photoshop impresses you; to be fair, it has moved on a great deal since then. I’m just trying to make the point that I see DVD cover design as just a little hobby; and much as I do sincerely admire many of your designs, mine are done on a glorified word processor and that’s not going to change as it’s so simple to use and gives me the results I want. It’s not that it dictates my simplistic style, it’s more a case of it suits my simplistic style; using it causes me very, very little in the way of compromise because my needs are simple.

Mine are all UK spec; I never put on bar codes, I avoid special features etc (if they don’t match my DVD I don’t want them on the cover) and finally, I want my whole collection to be personalised and have the same setting out. Some of you will hate it and others won’t mind, but I’m not designing for you, I’m designing for me, and then offering to you if you’d like them – and, as I said, I’m very satisfied with my download rate to date.

And I talk far, far too much… yawn.gif

p.s. have you checked out that DVD thread of mine above yet?

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How to amass a humungous DVD collection

…and no that’s not Magic beans either. (this is a top tip by the way, NOT and advertisement – I’m just sharing the love xxx)

[So a “bob” (as in my title tag), assuming you don’t know, is an old English colloquial term for the old English Shilling. In the seventies we “went decimal”, which means we now have 100 “new pennies” to one pound sterling £££, but in the old days there were twelve pence to a shilling, and twenty shillings to a pound. One BOB = one Shilling. Thank goodness we changed that! 240 pence to a pound seems absurd nowadays but the point is: a “bob” is still often used (though the phrase is probably fast disappearing) to mean, “not very much”. I believe American’s sometimes use the term DIME this way (albeit a dime is still current currency, but you get the idea?]

So, those cheap DVD’s. What if I told you I was recently able to purchase the following thirty titles for just ten English pennies (that’s $0.17 at today’s rate – yes really, seventeen cents)? : –

Fight Club – The usual Suspects – Memento – Road to Perdition – Miller’s Crossing – The Funeral – Dances with Wolves – Master and Commander – Braveheart – Funny People – Forgetting Sarah Marshall – Superbad – Ocean’s Eleven – Training Day – We Were Soldiers – Kalifornia – The Boston Strangler – Summer of Sam – The Last Samurai – Troy – Alexander – Minority Report – Solaris – Planet of the Apes – V for Vendetta – Constantine – Superman Returns – Tropic Thunder – The Heartbreak Kid – Zoolander.

And no, that’s not 10p each; it’s 10p for all thirty films. Think how much that would cost you on LoveFilm or to stream them directly! Well you can own them this way instead, you just have to house them.

Maybe they aren’t all to your liking and no they aren’t the newest of titles, but a classic film is always a classic film. And come on, be honest, some of those can be called classics, and there are plenty of others in the list that are more than watchable a second time around. You wouldn’t be here if you didn’t all like movies so even if some of you may have sussed the following trick, or something similar – I would expect it might be a pleasant surprise to at least some of you, if not most of you.

Well at around 500 titles in my own collection, 75% or more purchased as described below, I’ve almost given up this practice now so I’m going to let the cat out of the bag and share my secret. Now this might not appeal to many of you but they are (allegedly) second hand titles, but bare with, it’s better than it first sounds, I promise. I buy from Amazon (UK in my case but no doubt it works just the same elsewhere). I generally only buy films in triple packs; and ones listed as being in “Very good” condition” or “Like new”. For example: ‘Fight Club’; ‘Memento’; and ‘The Usual Suspects’, incredibly, all came in one pack. And for that pack I paid just 1p (£0.01 GBP – less than $0.02). Ah, hang on, there was postage to pay too. Here that’s £1.26 per pack (£12.60 for the ten packs listed above, but that’s still only £12.70 or $21.59 for all thirty titles). And you are going to get the odd film you don’t really want but at that price, do you really care? Besides, you must know someone you can give it to as a Birthday/Christmas present – and with their own custom label too!!! I purchase clear Amaray cases for just under £15.00 for 50, which is a little over £0.30 per case (or around $0.50 each piece); print my own labels and the deed is done!

Nothing dishonest or underhand, just a genuine, honest purchase

Some of the packs have clearly never even been opened, although on the other hand, some may have the odd mark. But don’t worry! The suppliers are so desperate to have good feed back that you are purchasing pretty much risk free. If you get a scratched disc – complain! Personally, if I get a disc that’s not absolutely perfect, I watch it first and only complain if it doesn’t play fully, but it makes little difference. If you’ve paid for “very good” and you don’t think you’ve got “very good” then you quickly e-mail them through Amazon; they offer their apologies, send you out another and tell you to dispose of the original as you see fit. They don’t even want it back as the return postage is more than their profit! And bonus time; if you only have one scratched movie of the three, they will send the whole pack again and you’ll be getting two double ups – more free Birthday and Christmas presents for your friends and relatives. I am such a tight ar5e, am I not? Never mind, I personalise their new labels and they are happy (or pretend to be at least, but isn’t that always the way with gifts).

So now you’re thinking, that all sounds too simple and I’ve checked out Amazon and the movie I liked in that list isn’t there for that price at all! No, you are probably right, you will need to be patient. So here’s my play: –

Have a mosey round the site and when you find a movie you like, either in a pack or on it’s own, pop it in your basket. Then, when you’re bored of searching, nip over to your basket and “save for later”. When you check back a few days (or hours) later, it will usually have changed price. And if you wait patiently, it will probably come down to 1p ($0.01).

Really? I hear you cry. Yes really, so here’s the thing:

Some of the sellers on Amazon have the old-fashined model of “stack ’em high, sell ’em cheap”. I read somewhere that ‘zOverstocks’ (for example) had a 2012 turnover of £30million and a profit of £4million. The seller’s postage price is set by Amazon but it often only costs about 1/3 the price they are compelled to charge you, to actually ship it out. They probably buy unwanted discs from Amazon users, who are off loading because they are that desperate for cash they trade-in for next to nothing; or they buy bankrupt stock (who cares because some haven’t even been unwrapped – and that’s new enough in my book). The whole point is: even apparently selling at just one penny they are generally still making a small profit. So some of these guys automatically track the price of other sellers by computer and reduce their item to make sure their’s is cheapest. And if two of them are at it for the same title – BINGO! The price will probably crash! I can’t guarantee this, it’s pot luck, but if you are patient enough you’ll be picking up a whole bunch of cheap DVD’s for next to nothing in no time. It won’t work for every title but it will work for music CD’s too quite often; I can vouch for that.

So there you have it. Another bullet of useful information from your friendly neighbourhood ICHY! Give it a go and see how you get on.

Here’s some right now (at time of posting this at least) that are rock bottom (used – very good condition)…




Good luck!

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Hires Label Comp: Winner for July 2014

Congratulations to joaoattitude for entering the winning label [for a second month in a row] for July 2014, “Most Popular Feature Films Released In 2014”.


Great job joaoattitude! thumb.gif Now you have to decide on the next theme for August…

You can go see the final results of the competition here, the artists names have been added to the items.

Thanks to the participants for your work 8834.gif The items in the gallery are now assigned to you, so you can edit the file details as needed.


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Poor, misunderstood, misled little child

Strictly speaking, I guess this is a bit naughty, starting a thread again but there is a good reason so please bear with me through the preamble because I think some of you may owe me a fresh look. (some are new and some were posted previously).

Are you aware what the site rules on uploading covers actually say? Are you, are you, are you, are you, are you??? yellow.gif
Well this is one… Uploading rule 4. “Do not download a cover and make slight changes to it, without giving the original creator the credit”.

Being new here then, I checked the rules and scrupulously complied. Having compiled a substantial private collection of unfettered, patch-worked and original covers of my own, I felt I wanted to share some of my stuff. And as I’m new, little of my (private) patch-worked stuff contains anyting from this site, but you guys seemed to be the best so this is where I chose to come and join in. I had to change my whole setting out structure in order to comply with the size requirements for the output file (which takes roughly an hour for each cover as it has to be entirely rebuilt). I simply uploaded covers I was working on that are now in the new format and they were uploaded with honest intentions and fully credited every image that had been cribbed. The point being, it wasn’t a case of rebuilding my favourite, solely designed, covers and uploading, I just uploaded the next ones on my list. Even now I’ve only removed covers that contained cribbed images; it’s not necessarily intended to showcase my best work as such, though I am happy with what’s posted.

So, cribbing parts of other covers for my own use is obviously acceptable and is no different from me downloading a file and using it unfettered. But to me there are middle grounds too. One I’ll call “conversion” covers; where say, a cover is converted from one region to another with nominal alterations. And another I’ll call “imitation” covers, where ideas and images are reworked into a new cover. It would be my position that the former should have permission of the originators, and the latter MUST adequately credit the originators and must not be claimed as original work (preferably with permission too). And yes, I now know this isn’t the preferred stance of the site overall.

So it turns out, since those rules were written the culture here has evolved significantly, and making any kind of changes to a cover and uploading it, even where proper credit is given is somewhat frowned upon now. You may or may not agree with my opinion on cribbing but you have to acknowledge that it is actually substantially more defensive of other designer’s work that your own rules. And Bazzah has agreed the rules are out-of-date and need to be rewritten.

The only mistake was uploading covers early on in my membership, before having discovered that there has been a substantial evolution in the culture of this site. It may be fair to say I have a softer stance on what is considered plagiarism than some of you, but that is not to say I don’t fully support and endorse that general position. None of the covers now listed fall into either of my conversion or imitation categories. I was tripped up, unfairly I believe, by what I consider a fully reasonable interpretation of the existing upload rules. All I ask now is that I’m judged afresh for my design work and for that reason I’ve started a new thread so that past comments should not now unfairly prejudice your judgement. To clarify, the following covers are all my own work, please enjoy: –

Ichy007 thumb.gif

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