How to Become a Book Cover Illustrator?

Published June 7, 2023

Visual design has become a powerful selling point – from food to healthcare to the literary industry, everyone uses attractive designs to captivate their target market. Today, we are going to focus on book cover illustration and how you can become a book cover illustrator.

A book cover is one of the fundamental elements that help a book succeed, and you need a professional to reach that level of success. Being a book cover illustrator is challenging, as it deals with creating new and unique cover designs for better promotions. But how can you get hired as a book cover illustrator? If you are learning about this profession, this blog can push you in the right direction. Let’s dive into the intricacies of this profession.

What Does a Book Cover Illustrator Do?

A book cover illustrator creates creative art, visual graphics, and textual designs that develop a compelling book cover. Book cover illustrators read the project brief (manuscript) before starting a new design project. This helps them understand the concept and develop graphics related to your book.

The book cover illustrators visualize themes and concepts and prepare a layout once they’ve grabbed the idea. Here are some of the basic job roles of a book cover illustrator:

  • They cater to all the design process elements, including typesetting and graphic designing.
  • They must select the typography and creative art for the cover (front, back, and spine), including inner covers (if needed).
  • An illustrator must design a book cover related to the book’s genre to entice people to purchase.
  • Illustrators must collaborate with the author and the branding team to create a perfect design.

Notable Tips to Get Hired as a Book Cover Designer

Like other creative careers, there is a path and steps to follow to become a professional book cover designer.

1.   Learn How to Design a Book Cover

This is the first step toward your book cover illustrator career. Your skills are the only thing that can help you get hired. Even though formal education is not a requirement in this career, a degree or certification in fine arts or graphic design can be useful. These programs can assist you in acquiring some skills and knowledge of different software and tools. You can also take beginner-level courses to get the hang of the field and the process.

2.   Sharpen Your Skills

Once you have mastered the software and tools, it’s time to polish and improve your skills. Practice with different patterns, styles, trends, and technologies. Try to get an internship at a professional organization, as this will assist you in improving your skills and can be a valuable prospect for potential employers.

3.   Create a Professional Portfolio

As you have gained some experience and expanded your skills, start working on the next step, creating a portfolio. A portfolio is a document highlighting your qualifications, abilities, designs, or creatives of cover designs. You can attach your portfolio link to your resume; this will give an idea to hiring managers about your talent and creativity and increase your chances of getting hired. Remember to update your portfolio so the hiring manager can see your recent work.

4.   Market Your Skills and Abilities

Once you are confident in your abilities, you may promote your skills as a book cover illustrator. You may consider using online promotion to reach a wider audience at the right place and time; professional websites and social media are the best ways to do this. Moreover, if you keep uploading posts showcasing your recent work, you may get noticed by a publisher or author.

5.   Contact Publishing Agencies 

Connecting with publishing agencies can be a good start to your career as a professional book cover illustrator. This will help you to showcase your work to publishers and authors. They might be impressed with your work and can offer you a job or a long-term contract. Do your research and connect with publishers or authors you know are hiring.

6.   Keep Practicing

Don’t lose hope, and never doubt your work. Visual design is an evolving field, and trends are always changing. As a book cover illustrator, you must keep up with the latest trends and ensure your work portrays them. Building a good working relationship with your clients and considering their requirements is essential to keep revisions to a minimum before starting a project.

What are the Best Platforms for Networking?

Several networking platforms are used for developing a portfolio, where you can share your creativity with other illustrators and potential employers.

  • ArtStation is the leading platform for showcasing creative skills to a large audience. Additionally, it has a 95% selling/hiring ratio.
  • The Rookies is another countable space to develop your portfolio.
  • The Best in Fantastic Art platform allows you to participate in contests and expand your portfolio.

Fill the Gap – Get Hired as a Professional Book Cover Illustrator

Starting your professional career as a book cover illustrator is not easy as it may sound. You need to learn creative skills and keep polishing them. If you are an experienced illustrator looking for a job, drop your resume at AMZ Book Publishing. It is one of the most prominent names among ebook publishers, and with a team of expert book cover illustrators, writers, editors, and proofreaders, we can help you to meet your book marketing goals.

Author Bio:

Lou Martins is a writer and entrepreneur with years of experience in “Amazon book publication” and selling on Amazon. A writer by day and a reader by night. Outside of work, she enjoys traveling and spending time with family and friends because work and life balance is important.

Author Bio:

Lou Martins is a writer and entrepreneur with years of experience in “Amazon book publication” and selling on Amazon. A writer by day and a reader by night. Outside of work, she enjoys traveling and spending time with family and friends because work and life balance is important.

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