Uploading Custom Cover Art

This documentation describes how to upload files for custom cover art in Pika and how to edit the corresponding MARC records so Pika can fetch the uploaded images for display.

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Why would I upload custom cover art?

Some bib records might not have the data points necessary to fetch cover art from the enrichment provider, such as an ISBN or ISSN. You might also have records for kits or equipment that wouldn’t have an ISBN/ISSN that you’d like to have an improved display for. Pika has a utility that allows you directly upload custom cover art images to Pika with the Upload Custom Cover feature.

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Uploading Custom Cover Art images

Go to the Cataloging tab and click on the Upload Custom Cover link.  

Click on the Add New Cover button to add a cover. If a cover already exists, you can filter your search using the Search box.  Click on the Edit link to edit an existing cover art image.  You can use the Drag covers here to upload feature to add an image from your computer.

The maximum file size for custom covers is 2MB. If your image file is larger than 2MB, it will not be uploaded.

When using the Drag covers here to upload feature it will put the image right on the page.  Click Remove file if you do not want to use that image.  Click on the Upload Covers button to add the cover to the collection.

Click on the Add New Cover button.

Click on the Choose File button located under Cover Image. Find the file on your computer. Click open to load it as a cover image file.  You can use the File Name to rename the file.  

The image will be loaded under the Cover Image.  Click the Save Changes and Return button.

You can filter the list down to look for your file. To find your file, you may have to include the dashes when filtering for the title.  The dashes become part of the title when spaces are left in the file name. 

Click on the Edit link to view your cover art image.  Click on the Delete button to remove your cover art image.

If you try to upload a file that has the name of an existing file, you will receive a message that the filename already exists.  You will be given the option to Overwrite the existing file. To avoid overwriting the same file, you can rename the file on your computer and choose the file again to upload the new image.

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MARC record modification process

The MARC record that corresponds with the uploaded custom cover art must be modified in the ILS to include an 856 field that Pika uses to fetch the correct cover art. Pika cannot fetch custom cover art without the modified 856 field. 

Edit the MARC record in the ILS and add a LOCAL INFO(v) 856 field formatted as follows: 

856 72 |2pika|3Cover Image|f<name of image file> 

Example: 856 72 |2pika|3Cover Image|fpass_the_pigs.jpg

  • The Sierra Field Group Tag should be Local Info (v), so that this field will be retained if the record is deduped or overlaid.

  • The subfield 2 can also contain the words ‘pika’, “pikaimage’, ‘pika_image’, ‘image’, ‘vufind_image’, ‘vufindimage ‘, ‘vufind’.  The information is not case sensitive. Marmot recommends ‘pika’

  • Any image format that displays in a web browser can be used. We recommend using .png files or .jpg/.jpeg files.

  • Please transform large images into smaller ones. The maximum image file size is 2MB.

  • It will take overnight for the MARC changes to appear in Pika for non-Sierra systems.

To verify the changes to the MARC record have appeared, browse to the record view for the bib you changed, and look under the Staff View accordion. The new 856 tag should be shown in the MARC Data.

Once the added 856 field displays in the MARC record in Pika (check the staff view at the bib level to confirm the MARC field exists in the record) and the image has been uploaded, the new cover art should display without intervention after a period of time. 

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Force cover art reload

To force the cover art to display immediately, click on the Reload Cover button in the Staff View section.

Reload cover button at the bib level


Reload cover button at the grouped work level


To use the Reload Cover button, first click on the link to the title of the item you would like to reload the cover art.

Next, go to the bottom of the page and click on the Staff View tab.  Click on the Reload Cover button.

The Success box will appear with a message that the cover has been reloaded.  It will also suggest that you refresh the page to clear your local cache.

To clear your cache use the keyboard keys CTRL + F5.  This should change your cover art image.

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Fetch custom cover art by URL

Pika can also fetch cover art by URL as entered in an 856 field in the MARC record. To show a link in the 856 as cover art, the 856 subfield 2 must contain  ‘pika’, “pikaimage’, ‘pika_image’, ‘image’, ‘vufind_image’, ‘vufindimage ‘, or ‘vufind’.   Marmot recommends ‘Pika’. The 856 subfield u must contain the full URL link to the cover art image. 

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