I'm a person that is usually trying to save as much money as possible. If I draw my own book cover, is it okay? or do I really need to hire an artist?


3 Answers 3


I'd say, yes, of course, you can.

For instance, authors of children's books can many times do both the text and the artwork. And even stick figures can work...

It all depends on your artistic skill. (And the type of book, as the stick figures example shows...)

If you're working with a publishing house, they will have ideas and standards and may or may not want to use your cover. But then again, it wouldn't surprise me if artistically skilled authors have designed their own covers as well.

With a publisher, it's not just about art, but sales and PR as well... Or well, it's always about sales and PR as well... even if your cover is only visible on Amazon...

But, if you think you can do it, then why not?


Children's author Grace Lin drew some of her own covers and illustrations. J.R.R. Tolkien drew his own maps of Middle Earth. I'm sure there have been plenty of other authors in the past who have done this, so I'm sure you could do it as well.

If you're planning on self-publishing, you might have a better chance at using your drawing, since, as Erk said, traditional publishing houses may or may not use the drawing.

I personally think it's very impressive when an author draws their own cover/illustrations. It is cheaper than hiring someone, and if you believe you can do it, go for it!

  • Tolkien drew not only maps, but the cover art for the first edition of The Hobbit, and had strong views about the covers of the Ballantine editions of LotR, which he strongly disliked. He also drew the interior illustration for the Gates of Moria, and several more that were never used, see Pictures by J R R Tolkien. Commented May 11, 2021 at 23:41
  • I'll just add one more author who drew her own illustrations (I don't think she actually designed the covers, but her drawings are generally used for them - really, what else?). Tove Jansson, of the Moomin fame. Actually, I'll add a second one more. Antoine de Saint-Exupéry. The Little Prince. Text, illustrations, cover.
    – Divizna
    Commented Jan 2, 2023 at 15:18

Of course you can, but if you don't have any background in graphic design, I will not recommend to risk it.

Book cover design is an important aspect of publishing a book, as it is often the first thing that potential readers will see and can have a significant impact on their decision to purchase the book. A professional book cover designer has the training, skills, and experience to create a cover that is visually appealing, effective at communicating the content and tone of the book, and appropriate for the target audience.

If you are not a professional book cover designer, it may be difficult for you to create a cover that meets these criteria. It is generally a better idea to hire a professional designer who can create a cover that will effectively represent your book and attract potential readers.

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