Hide and Seek

36 Comments

Tonight I had some grief over this post. Was stated this might sound very “Jerry McGuire-esk”  Mission Statement and all. So I deleted it and apologized  to anyone who thought this blog post was anything other than what I was intending.  NOPE not at all all how this is. I am not trying to “shake” things up. I am not trying to come across arrogant or hurtful.  This is just how I feel. My stupid little opinion. So you know what? Screw it! I am keeping it up. 🙂  Because.. yep, that is how I Roll! 😛 LOL

I don’t often write my thoughts down on my blog. I felt the need to state this after reading another blog entry last night.

*******Mrs. Sylvia Day brought up a good point, one that I should have stated in this post before. I agree that when working through a publisher the author and artist should not have contact during the cover art process. The statements I am making below refer to after the cover is completed and up for sale. *******

Often we as cover artist are expected to be the silent force in book sales. We are to sit back and pat ourselves on the back in quiet. Well, there is and never will be anything quiet about me. I can’t help it. That is who I am. I am coming up on my two year cover art anniversary. Yes, some would say I am a newbie. I am. Yet, this newbie has worked on many covers and worked with many publishers and authors. So I feel I am qualified to give my thoughts on the industry standards.

Cover Artist and Photographers DO help sell your books! We invest our time and talent for your book. I know that for myself, I promote your book just as much or MORE than others.  We WANT to sell your book! Artist are so proud to be able to help you reach your readers. I personally love the authors I have worked with and for. I have a personal investment in helping you spread the word on your book.

I can’t tell you how often I have heard this: ” I would never have picked that book up if the cover was bad.”

PEOPLE JUDGE YOUR BOOK BY ITS COVER! whether that is wrong or right. It is the truth.

I recently received an email in which the person told me a story about how much my cover art influenced a sale.

She stated that she picked up the book based on the cover. When she got home she realized it was the same book she passed on the first time it was released because the cover on the previous release was so bad. She enjoyed the book, but if the cover had stayed the same she would never have bought it. Now she is a fan of the author and will continue to buy her books.

I don’t think that authors intentionally dismiss cover artist. I don’t think that the industry by a whole looks down on us. I just feel like we are some times not given enough credit for what we actually do for the sale of books.

Examples:

At conferences I have registered for. There normally is a place you can state letting them know you are part of the industry. Not once have I seen in the pull down tab. Cover Artist. Oh there are blogger tabs, and librarian tabs, agent tabs, and editor tabs, etc. Why no cover artist tab? NOT COOL!

How many authors actually know who did their cover art? Not many. I talk to a lot of authors, consider many dear friends. There are many who had no idea who did their cover art. THIS MAKES ME SAD. Do you know why they did not know… because once again we are expected to be silent and not put it out there for the authors to see us.

When I started out, I wanted to learn more about fellow cover artist. I realized very quickly. They are often no where to be seen. It was hard to find them. Often they were not even credited in the book. THE HORROR!! So I put myself out there. I want fellow artist to not feel ashamed of what we do. Plus, this is just me… I am chatty. I get a kick out of interacting with other readers. It totally helps me with my job. I get to know what readers like and don’t like and do my cover art accordingly.

I believe there is much more to being a cover artist than just putting a picture to your book. I believe we should help market and promote your book. I think that we should link it up on our social sites. We should shout to the world when it is on the shelves at the book stores: LOOK!! This is a great book! Also, I did the cover art. So now you MUST buy it now or feel guilty. LOL When we do these acts, be happy about it! Let us know you appreciate it. Don’t makes us feel like we should hide or stay silent. It is demeaning and makes for one very unhappy artist. No one wants that! Trust me! 🙂

In the end, this is the way I feel about my role I play in the successes of a book. This is just my opinion. The way I go about my job. Other artist might have different feelings. I just wanted to state how I feel about promoting books and being kinda… In Your Face… not hiding. 🙂

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36 thoughts on “Hide and Seek

  1. this is so true!!people do judge books buy covers it is the first thing people see.it will make them pick it up or walk past it.. Cover artists should be recognized and know and your super great for taking interest in helping ot sell thee books not just slap on a pretty picture. you do great work and keep it up.

  2. Agree 100%. As an independent author, I work closely with my entire team–editor, interior designer, proofer and cover artist and every one of them is not only credited but pimped out as often as possible. We are all in this together, coming together to create something fantastic and promoting each other is part of that.

  3. I totally agree. I always look at the book cover, first. If it doesn’t look good, it better have one heck of a good synopsis for me to want to keep going. The cover says a lot about the book, itself: how much care was taken and how professional it is.

    Look at a lot of the book blogs out there, especially for the romance genre. A great deal of them have enter memes based on Book Covers, that’s how important and beloved a book cover is.

    Power to the Book Cover Artist 😉

  4. You have the support of many, many fans and authors. We believe in you and your artwork! You could very well be the cover artist who changes the industry. Let us know if there is anything we can do for you.

  5. Really? They don’t have a “cover artist” option at conferences? Wow, that surprises me. How stupid!

    I’ve always admired your interaction with authors & their readers. You absolutely help sell books & I wish more cover artists would show off their work. I’ve said this once before, but it was the cover art and character wallpapers on your facebook page that turned me on to Larissa Ione’s Demonica series (which I love, love, love!)

    • Larissa is beyond awesome!!
      Yes, it is a little disturbing to me how little respect cover artist are given sometimes. 😦 Thank you for your support Tonya!

  6. I completely agreenwithnyour blog.
    I for one browse a lot in book shops, I often pick a book up simply because the cover catches my eye, whether it because a gorgeous man is staring at me or because it is a beautiful cover or even just intriguing writing on the cover.
    I don’t understand why a author would take the time to spend months sometimes writing a book then not care who does the cover for the book.
    You both are helping in the process or sell that book, your job is to initially attract and there’s to make it worth our while.
    Good job you for speaking up !

    Keep up fab work Trisha ☺

    I follow your work pintrest too 😊

  7. You know I love you, doll! And I love your covers. I’m so proud of the ones I have that you created for me. 🙂

    I’ve been told in the past, by both cover artists and editors that the wall between cover artists and authors is deliberate, because what the author wants on their cover is often irrelevant. It’s editorial, sales, and marketing’s realm to decide what should go on a cover regardless of the book’s content or the author’s vision, followed by input from the chain bookstore buyers. So the wall is there to keep authors from exerting any sort of pressure on the artist and creating an uncomfortable situation for the artist.

    I’ve been lucky enough to know some of the creative minds behind my covers and I always give their name when I hear praise for a cover of mine that they did. I’m also very careful never to try to influence or suggest anything to the artists (unless I’m directly commissioning) so that I protect the relationship between us.

    • ((( Sylvia ))) I totally agree that during the cover art process when working with publishers. The artist and author should not be involved together. I was speaking more of after the art is done. I think that we should be able to talk to the author, help her/him promo their book etc.. We should be able to show the world a cover we are proud of doing. Ya know?
      When we are working one on one with the author the dynamic totally changes. I have to say though, once I know an author personally. I will do EVERYTHING I can to help them sell their book.
      You know I love your writing! Muah!

  8. Girl, I have seen you bust your hump countless times for books on Twitter, Facebook, your own blog, etc. If anyone needs an example of cover artists who don’t just handoff a book when the art is done, but stick with it, promoting it, until it hits the shelves (and beyond) you’re it.

    I have judged tons of book by their covers only to feel either shame or elation at the fact that the book was WAY different than I thought it would be. That’s human nature though, right, we see and we judge based on our perceptions.

    Keep up the good work and never let yourself be silenced or put in a corner because you’re “only” the cover artist. Nobody puts Pickyme in a corner!!

  9. You spread your wings as far as you can and fly, girl!!! You are so spot on with this whole blog and I support you in all your endeavors. Your work speaks for itself and I am actually getting to the point that I can tell if a cover is one of yours. They stand out and I can see the perfectionist coming through in all of them! The authors who have you are very fortunate ad so are we. 🙂

  10. I so agree with you! I haven’t been to a conference yet (which I so hope to go to soon) so I didn’t know about not having a category for cover artist. That’s really is not cool! I mean the cover is part of the marketing of the book. That’s a big part the way I see it.

    I understand about not having the pressure on cover artists with publishers and such but at the same time I have seen where authors were totally unhappy about a cover that to them doesn’t relate to the story at all or even changes the emotion of the story that the author has written. To some extent I still think the author should have some say so in the final cover.

    I love working directly with my authors that are indie authors. I like seeing the different directions that the covers take from the first mock up to the final cover. Sometimes it’s not all that different and sometimes it’s world’s away different. Sometimes it’s what the author comes up with and sometimes a different direction that I may give them that they say, “Wow I like that even better!” 😉 But sometimes I get the response of “No, not the direction I want to go.” and that’s ok too I just readjust back to what they want.

    But like you once we have that final cover I will blog, facebook, tweet and any other way I can get the message out there for people to check out their books.

    Great post, Trish! I think I might snag it and share on my blog as well if you don’t mind.;)

  11. Covers are very important to me! I am very visual, I often choose books because of the cover! Cover artists are real artist, they give our fantasy a face… I just wanted to tell you: a few days back I searched an author who was new to me… on her HP she has named the cover artist of every of her books, I was very pleased as I found YOU named (I do know some artists by name, but you are the most known to me), I will try this author because I like the experts BUT also because I like the COVERS!!!
    Cover artist should be much more cherished!!!

  12. You didn’t go Jerry Maguire-esq because you didn’t take the fish! The fish has to go with you! lol

    But really Trish you do a wonderful job with your art and it’s only right that you take pride in it and freely speak what’s on your mind! I personally don’t understand the reasons behind the authors and cover artist not being able to communicate during the process. To me it would seem that the author should have a say in what is going to be the image that sells their words. I know that the marketing team is paid to sell the book to the best of its ability, they guide the cover image to be what they think is best but often they completely disregard what’s actually in the book! To a book nerd like me it’s highly irratating when the hero/heroine is so far off of the original description in the book! Recently I read a YA book where the heroine is Asain and yet the cover despicts a caucasian gothic girl (and no goth look is mentioned in the book). If I was the author I’d be insulted! You would think if they had a say they could impart important details such as that. That’s just my opinion anyways. Regardless of what the process is, fact of the matter is you work your butt off to create & provide the best art asked of you, you’re passionate in what you do and it shines through & through! Don’t give in to the pressure to stay behind the scenes, you deserve the respect and credit due to you! xox

  13. Pickyme, You know I love your covers. I have found so many new authors because you have posted the cover on one of your pages. I am a person that gets pissy when a cover misrepresents the book. I have seen a few where it is obvious that the artist knew NOTHING about the book. I have seen Lions shifters on books about Wolves. Blondes on books about red heads. The list is endless and it drives me crazy as a reader because that cover, if its a picture cover, influences what I see when I read the book.
    I think you do an awesome job and work very hard to create a “perfect” cover for a book. You should be able to be proud of what you do and promote it. I think that all of us need to speak up and let people know that covers are important to us and that we love the people that make them. Alot of people say that with ebooks the cover isn’t as important but to me thats not true. I still look at books at the grocery store of book store. I browse Amazon to see whats out and the cover is the 1st impression I get. It has to draw me in to either click on or pick up the book to read what its about.
    Thank you for all the work you do. I love it

  14. You know I love your work, this is all SOOOO true. I love you for saying it. Because I’m about as loud as you when it comes to pimpimng out the covers my images are on as well as the designers who have made them so amazing (like YOU)

    Keep it up girl, you rock.

    Jenn

  15. I couldn’t agree more with what you have said and it saddens me that cover artists don’t get the recognition some honestly deserve, like yourself. This is the first time, in a few months worth of searching, that I’ve come across a cover artist that strikes a chord with me. Months of searching and finally I’ve found one with real talent and love for what they do. Hoping to hire you this year!

  16. You go girl!!! I am not a cover artist, although, I think it would be such a fun, creative, and rewarding job, so I am a little jealous. Sorry, I can’t help it. Anyway, I am a huge reader and have read several of the books that you have worked on. I was not aware that cover artists do not receive any credit and are barely even recognized most of the time. That would absolutely infuriate me. I am so with you!! You are another form of merchandising and promotion for them… why wouldn’t they want you to promote their book because you have followers just like they do. I stumbled upon your blog about a year and a half ago and have been keeping tabs every since. I read your blogs and check out the books that you talk about… so feel good about that fact that you are promoting their product to readers, even if your not supposed to… and it works! Don’t let them get you down.. you have a job that you love and you have fans of your own.. don’t let them take that away from you.. and don’t let the traditions of the industry change you!

  17. ….and might I add that if you had not mentioned some of the books that I picked up off of your blog, then I would have never heard of them, or enjoyed them. So feel good about that! No matter what the industry wants you to do, you are doing your job better then expected!

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