Whether it’s a children’s book, a young-adult novel, or even a series for adults that you’d like to add some visual interest to, illustrations are a great way to bring a story to life. The images can be included throughout the pages of the text, and of course, on the front and back cover. Illustrations aren’t only fanciful; they can also include maps, charts, graphs, and more. Artwork adds magic to fairytales, helps to depict and better explain key concepts, allow you to get your point across more clearly, and of course, they can help to attract prospective readers and encourage more engagement with a text.
In other words, book illustrations can make your writing stand out from the crowd. They can mean the difference between readers selecting your writing over other texts. Because they offer so much value, you want to be sure that your illustrations are as striking and attention-grabbing as possible. They should also help to increase the understanding of your words and your message, as well as establish a deeper connection with your writing. Since illustrations are so important, it goes without saying that you want to make sure that they are as visually appealing as possible, that they really relate to your writing, and that they truly do foster greater understanding of the message, information, or story you are trying to tell.
While you might be a wordsmith, however, artwork may not be your forte. If that’s the case and you have a great story that you’d like to add interest to within the pages, you’d like your cover to pop so to make your book more appealing to readers, or both, to ensure your illustrations serve their purpose, you’re going to want to hire a professional who has a deft hand and a great imagination; someone who can bring your vision to life and truly enhance your message. But how do you go about finding a reputable, credible, and reliable book illustrator? Here are some tips that can help to point you in the right direction.
Know the Details of Your Book
It might sound silly to say, but it’s absolutely worth saying it: before you seek the services of a professional illustrator, you’re going to want to make sure that you know the particulars of your book. By knowing this information, you’ll be able to convey it to prospective illustrators and increase your chances of finding someone who will suit your needs. Examples of the key details that you’ll want to know include:
- The size of your printed book: 6×9, 8.5×8.5, or 8×10, for example
- The number of illustrations you’re going to need, including within the pages, the cover, the back, the title page, the dedication page, or anywhere else
- Where you’d like to publish your writing
- The format you’d like to publish your writing in, such as paper back, hard cover, eBook, etc.
- The timeframe that you would like to have the illustrations completed, as this will have a direct impact on the date it will be published
- The maximum amount that you want to spend
Your Style Preference
You’ll also want to know what your style preference is before you start looking for a book designer for your writing. There are so many different styles of artwork that can be used for illustrations, and there’s no right or wrong option. Do some research; look at the illustrations in some of your favorite books, or browse online to get an idea for the different styles of artwork. What kind of color palette to you: black and white, pastel, bold, etc.? Do you prefer more cartoon-like images or realistic pictures? Does a live medium, such as pen and ink or watercolor, speak to your taste, or are you more drawn to digital art?
Summing It Up
By taking the above factors into consideration, you’ll have an easier time finding the right professional illustrator that will really make your book one-of-a-kind.