Creating a Book Cover Page in Pressbooks

If you login to your Pressbooks account, you may notice on the Book Info page, if you scroll down you’ll see “Cover Image” and some details. Cover Image should be 1:1.5 aspect ratio. Recommended dimensions are 2500px × 3750px, maximum size is 2MB.

You may be asking yourself, well how do I make a cover with limited tools? Well I’m going to show you how to make one using a free online image editing tool called Pixlr – available at

The first step is to find an image if for example, you’re writing material about cats. I’m going to find an image from Unsplash and post it below. Note I was looking for images that were similar to a book cover’s portrait orientation, just to make my life a little bit easier.

I found this most excellent image of a cat that fits the needs of the material of my Pressbook.

The perfect cat image.

Now this image looks nice and small here on WordPress, but if I go into the image that I downloaded on my computer, and open Preview to look at the settings (I use a Mac) and then select “Tools” and then “Adjust Size” we’ll see the native size of the image – remember the Pressbooks recommendations are 2500px × 3750px. At this point I can either a. adjust in Preview or b. await my use of Pixlr (I can also check this in Pixlr). I’m going to go ahead and begin using Pixlr.

Look to Adjust Size.
It’s too big!

Now I’ve opened up my image in the free Pixlr site, selected “Resize” and “Image”. I adjusted and turned off “constrain proportions” for this image because I figured out the difference if I did not constrain proportions wouldn’t be noticeable. I wouldn’t necessarily recommend this for most images, but for this one I could make that change.

Constrain Proportions is turned off, use sparingly and with caution.

Now that I’ve done my duty with resizing the image, I want it so that I can simply write my text title on the front as well. I’m going to go into the image “Adjust” settings in Pixlr and make my image more opaque using the “Brightness” tool.

Boosting the brightness.

Now I’m just going to add some text for my title using the “Add Text” tool.

Adding text is super nice.

For this material I’m going to use black text, as I’ve made the background more opaque, but there are all kinds of fun settings that make putting in text easy in Pixlr, such as adding a “shadow” or a “background” which enables you to have so much more functionality!

Check out all of the awesome functionality in the Pixlr text editor.

Voila, here is my cover.

Now that’s a nice cover!

Lastly, I export the file from Pixlr and in the settings you can see everything you need to know to make the image work for Pressbooks. You then have a file ready to upload in Pressbooks. I hope this helps in your journey of using Pressbooks.