Is it possible to tweak an image from a designer once you've paid?

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sugarhit

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I'm not yet at this stage of my production process but I'm curious:

Say I pay for a book design and decide I want the book to be a series. Can I then tweak, say the background colors and title and post the rest of the books?

For example, Jasinda Wilder's books all have the pantyhose color as a tweak:

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51GVt8FMg3L._BO2,204,203,200_PIsitb-sticker-v3-big,TopRight,0,-55_SX278_SY278_PIkin4,BottomRight,1,22_AA300_SH20_OU01_.jpg


51yrxcK6FdL._BO2,204,203,200_PIsitb-sticker-v3-big,TopRight,0,-55_SX278_SY278_PIkin4,BottomRight,1,22_AA300_SH20_OU01_.jpg
 
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Ketzel

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If you include that use in the rights you are buying from the designer, sure.
 

Straka

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I think it's important to get a contract in place, stipulating your conditions. In many cases, if an artist sells a physical art piece, such as a painting, they still retain the digital copyrights.

So I didn't have to figure all that out, I put my dusty BFA degree to work and made my own cover.
 

Invincibility

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Before you decide on this, consider that those cover variants are horribly boring. Literally the only difference is the coloring and the title text. One cover by itself looks great, but the series taken as a whole looks lazy and amateurish.
 

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The power of imagery and title. I searched for Jasinda Wilder on Amazon, read and liked the samples, and now have the Big Girls boxed set on my Kindle.

I think these similar pics work very well for a series, but that's because they're non-specific to the individual stories.

-Derek
 

sugarhit

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Before you decide on this, consider that those cover variants are horribly boring. Literally the only difference is the coloring and the title text. One cover by itself looks great, but the series taken as a whole looks lazy and amateurish.

Possibly, but she's a blockbuster indie seller so it doesn't hurt to take note

If you include that use in the rights you are buying from the designer, sure.
Thanks, that's something I'll have to negotiate in the contract if I'm interested

The power of imagery and title. I searched for Jasinda Wilder on Amazon, read and liked the samples, and now have the Big Girls boxed set on my Kindle.

Ha, I have a tendency to do that. Anytime I go out with someone, they always end up shopping when they didn't plan on it ;o)
 
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slhuang

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The designer also may be happy to make such changes for you for an inexpensive price. I'm doing some short stories with my cover designer that I wanted all to have the same look -- she designed the first one for the price of a book cover, and for each subsequent one she just charges for the changes.
 

sugarhit

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The designer also may be happy to make such changes for you for an inexpensive price. I'm doing some short stories with my cover designer that I wanted all to have the same look -- she designed the first one for the price of a book cover, and for each subsequent one she just charges for the changes.

Thanks, that's a good option.
 

Ted Christensen

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If the designer has a layered .psd file on hand, it should be very easy for them to make the changes you need. If it is a straight photo, could be more time consuming.

In either case, the designer would have the best software (you would hope) for the job to keep the quality of the artwork up. So you would want to speak with them about that option in possible future. They also gives them a heads up to ensure your file is saved in a way that would make it easy for them.

I always save a master .psd file for this very reason before I flatten it and do the final tweaks and styling.
 

amergina

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But why pay a designer if you can do that yourself? Quick Select, Sat/Hue/Light, done.

Because you may not have the right to change their design.

Now, you *may* have that right, and if you do, yeah, go ahead.

But changing someone else's creative design when you don't have permission? No.
 

sugarhit

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If the designer has a layered .psd file on hand, it should be very easy for them to make the changes you need. If it is a straight photo, could be more time consuming.

In either case, the designer would have the best software (you would hope) for the job to keep the quality of the artwork up. So you would want to speak with them about that option in possible future. They also gives them a heads up to ensure your file is saved in a way that would make it easy for them.

I always save a master .psd file for this very reason before I flatten it and do the final tweaks and styling.

good point. I will make sure to bring that up with her when we're done with the final design.
 

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Because you may not have the right to change their design.

Now, you *may* have that right, and if you do, yeah, go ahead.

But changing someone else's creative design when you don't have permission? No.

I meant assuming permission is given. THEN why would you? It's like me changing 8 litter boxes and then paying a cleaning lady to do the 9th. Like, too much money?
 

Max Vaehling

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As a designer, I always make sure to clarify the rights clients do and don't get either in a contract or along with the invoice. The standard package involves the original use for an unlimited time plus promotional use, excluding promotional items for sale like t-shirts. Promotional use can require a bit of fiddling about, so I wouldn't complain about that. But the right to make significant changes as well as launching new products based on my one-time designs, those require extra negotiation.

Changing the colors to make a new book cover (without asking), that's a small change, but a big transgression because it's a new product. Big no-no. If it's a new book, it's a new cover, no matter how little work it was. So a series like the one in the OP would either require an extra agreement for each new book or a contract for the whole series.
 

Booklover199

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You would have to talk to the designer about it, but in all honesty it's not something I think you would want to do. With a book series people think their covers all have to look identical, when they shouldn't. They might be the same characters, but it's a different story. By using a cover that's almost identical I think it's kind of like saying "This book is basically just the same as the first one." They should look similar but not identical. The cover should be a way to encourage the reader to keep going. Best of luck! :)
 

G.A. Xandus

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Before you decide on this, consider that those cover variants are horribly boring. Literally the only difference is the coloring and the title text. One cover by itself looks great, but the series taken as a whole looks lazy and amateurish.
I agree with invincibility on the color variants. I personally would feel like my readers would deserve more than just a color swap. However, it's a great question in the interest of small changes.
 

fritzthefox

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It depends upon what rights you have purchased, but when in doubt, the golden rule is a good one to follow. You would not want one of your stories edited and republished without permission, would you? Ask the artist first.

Even if you can modify the art easily yourself, you do not automatically have the right to do so, since you would be creating a derivative work. And your contract may limit the reproduction of the art to one book. The only person who can tell you for sure is the artist.

If you would like the option to do things like that with art you commission in the future, ask to buy all rights. (Note that the artist is still permitted to retain the original art, if any, and use it for self-promotion).
 
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