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All this you should do before you ever talk to an artist. In fact, it requires you think about it in depth before you decide on one artist over another.
And in this marketplace, with new authors trying their wings daily, the market is filled with marvelous designers.
In fact, the list I am about to produce for you here shows the variety of their thoughts and tools, the marvelous talent and the dramatic differences among those designers.
First of all, let me tell you, I am an author. A communicator. I am not an artist. But I have worked with professional designers of everything from giant highway billboards to tiny, intriguing business cards for more than 42 years.
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Ah, my guilty secret is that I LOVE looking at the offerings of so many delightful artists and often after I sit down each morning to work (and yes, write!) I take myself on a magic carpet ride on the internet to gaze at the beauties they have offered up for our enjoyment. (I could go to amazon and surf, but trust me, that way, I am reading plot lines, not imbibing the skills of the artistry.)
Furthermore, if you look at these artists' works like I do, you become inspired by their imagination. I play a game with myself called, What Title Goes With This Cover?
Try it. You'll be smiling. \And like me, you may find yourself refreshed and ready to hit the keyboard. If you have problems tearing yourself away, then do hit the stop watch. You could spend the day doing this! (Yes. I have.)
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Each artist has different requirements of clients, different ways of working. Each tells you that, usually up front. If you have questions, ask. Note how each works and see if that set of principles works for you, your temperament and your ideas of professional relationships.
A few things you must know about this list:It is in no order.
It has no qualifiers, including pricing.
It represents, I am certain, only a smattering of those who offer up delicious work.
I do not say this list is complete, or the definitive list of those who can and should aid you.
Many designers go in and out of business, and change their names. So many here may have changed their status.
I do not advocate for one more than the other.
I do not receive any compensation from any of them for this listing.
But I have employed some of them.
I would employ a lot more if I wrote faster and had more books!
In fact, I have in my computer, far more book covers by artists whom I have employed than works I have yet written! (Yes, I am that enamored of great art that I salivate to possess it. Kind of like a woman who must have a certain man she adores! But I digress.)
And so here is my list:
And for my commercial, here I've added a few of my own covers (designed by two different artists) that I adore and you can readily see the difference in tone, treatment and, I do hope, genre!
YOU CA N ALSO SEE HOW I ASK MY DESIGNER TO COMBINE THESE ELEMENTS FOR OTHER USES!