I'm recommending the artist I worked with on my upcoming middle grade, Billy and the Gargoyles, Melissa Lyle. She does black and white or color illustrations or cover work for children's books. She is great to work with and took the time to listen to what I wanted. I sent pathetically, sad sketches of what I wanted and she brought them all to life.
You can get in touch with Melissa by e-mail or by message at Deviant Art
Contact Info [email protected]
Deviant Art Page TwinTwosGirl. You have to be a DA member to access her page.
Her rates per her DA page
Character fully colored w/ either a white or colored background - $10
Character w/ either a complex or simple background - $18
Digital sketch or digital ink line art - $4
Traditional pencil - $8
The above prices are for 1 character ONLY. If you want more than one character in a single picture, add $5 for each additional character.
Design of front (unlimited revisions until it’s perfect for you)
E-book image for your online retailers
Digital Hardback image (for marketing purposes)
You can also request additional goodies if you need them such as Facebook banners for an author page and website design. And when she says unlimited revisions, she means it. She actually had an entire cover done, but it didn't quite work for me so she started over until we eventually came up with this one. You pay half to start and don't pay the other half until you like what you see.
I fully intend to work with her again because she was fun and polite in all her emails and does amazing work that you can see on her site and on her Facebook page.
I had the pleasure of working with AW member Gale Haut, who designed the new covers for two of my backlist books that are coming out very soon as ebooks and POD. They're unusual covers, and I think they're striking and eye-catching, but do judge for yourselves: I've just revealed them here. Gale listened to what I wanted and implemented it with his own creative flare. He finished quickly, was responsive and went above and beyond what we'd agreed on. I recommend him without reservation.
I'm going to recommend Carmen Waters who designed the cover for my upcoming novel, Death Bytes. She can be reached through ExtasyBooks.com. The site mainly does erotic novels, but they do other works of fiction as well, and my novel is YA and very reader-friendly. (Sorry, that was a bit of a shameless plug).
Carmen was terrific to work with, very accomodating and responsive, and while I do not have the creativity in the area of cover design like Alessandra Kelly and Gale Haut do (and I think they do excellent work), I know what I like. Many people have complimented me on the cover for my novel and I have Ms. Waters to thank for that.
I wanted to recommend Lucas Durham, who did the illustration for my story in Writers of the Future. The piece he did is the first one on his webpage: http://lucasdurham.blogspot.com/
He does highly-detailed work in rich watercolors, is a super friendly guy, and he perfectly captured the feel of my story without me having to say a word (other than the writing itself!). I think, because of his medium and good sense of colors, his pieces tend to be unique and eye-catching.
Anyways, his email is LucasDurham1000 at gmail dot com.
Mallory Rock has some nice pre-made covers. I saw one so perfect for a title of mine (the Speech of Angels) I bought it instantly, and she made it instantly too!
Including the tweaks (change of skin colour and font, addition of quote) I paid $85. link
Steven Novak at Novak Illustration has been great to work with so far. Fast responses and amazing prices. His custom covers are a quarter of the cost of the guy who did my first book cover (who is also good, but pricey and not as fast of a turnaround as I would like so the company shall go unnamed).
I just got the cover for my second book from Najla Qamber Designs. I am so impressed! I couldn't be happier! She really captured what I wanted to portray. And very reasonable prices too. I highly recommend her.
I learned about her because of SLHang's recommendation in another thread. If you have seen her cover for Zero Sum Game, that's Najla's work too.
I highly recommend Geoffrey Bunting at The Ugly Tree Graphic Design (http://theuglytreegraphicdesign.co.uk/). I run an online magazine (timelesstalesmagazine.com) and he not only designed several kickass covers for us, but also formatted the stories inside so they looked really professional. Ugly Tree's efforts elevated the quality of our magazine exponentially and had no trouble meeting our deadlines (usually delivering early, even!). Their rates were very reasonable, even though we were on a tight budget. We've used many different designers in the past, but Ugly Tree is, by far, my favorite. Definitely check them out!
I mean, just look at how gorgeous this one came out...
Previous to writing, I worked in video games. So, I went to some old concept artists friends to help me with my cover. Their company is Ironbelly Studios in Montreal (you can find them on Facebook) and they do AMAZING work.
Now, because I was a friend, I can't say what their price might be for others. They also have a big game release coming up, so I don't know what their schedule would be like, but it couldn't hurt to ask.
I just thought that "video game concept artists" might be a new place to look to find your cover.