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I'm an author looking for a cover photo & character photos or illustrations

Hello, I am an author who wants to promote my initial novel on my website. I am also looking to sell my novel via amazon/kindle. The novel is about a woman who loves two friends. I have already created character physical appearances. The female character is an African-American woman, whose name is Destiny. She's in her mid 30's . . . she is 5'8" (height not an issue except with regards to proportion in group photo or illustration) . . . her body type is thick (voluptuous) & well proportioned . . . her hair is a short cut, curly & black . . . her skin tone is mahogany . . . she is affluent as a realtor and a real estate investor. Her initial love is Geno. an African-American man. He is late 30's/early 40's . . . he stands 6'2" . . . has a toned body . . . a bald head . . . skin tone is pecan tan . . . he is rich, an entrepreneur. The friend that she falls for is named Picasso. he like Geno is late 30's/early 40's . . . he stands 6'5" (as I mentioned height not a real issue as long as proportional and does give appearance of being tall) . . . he has a muscled large frame . . . his hair is in dreds with grey flecks (if possible but not a real necessity) . . . he is dark skin (described as ebony black in the novel) . . . he is a hustler who associates with the rich and the famous. I would like the 3 main characters in a group setting for the cover. If providing full body shots, I would like their clothes to express their stature in life. If possible with Picasso, would like him in all white, as that is how he is described in an opening scene. If just head shots, then it doesn't matter. This is pertaining to the cover. I will eventually be developing character bios for the website, so will at some point need individual shots of a variety of characters . . . as I also have several novels in various stages of completion. For illustrators: I would like characters as close to my description as possible. I look forward to your responses & thank you in advance for your time & effort in this matter.
Posted: 04/05/2013, 15:55:16 PM
I don't think I can help you much other than ask a few questions and maybe do a search for possible models. Hopefully, a talented illustrator will see your post (there are quite a few talented illustrators here -- some of the 3D renders that are done are absolutely amazing) and provide something for you. I say illustrator since I think the likelihood of finding three people who fit your description who work as frequent models for the same photographer is rather slim.

A few questions - 1) What is your timeline? It really helps to have an idea of how soon something is needed. 2) Do you have any preferences about the background for the cover of the first novel, or is it best to provide the characters isolated on white so that you can fill in whatever background that is needed?

Best of luck to you!
Posted: 04/09/2013, 15:55:23 PM
Good Afternoon Enigmacypher, First let me thank you for your reply and providing insight in what may be my best avenue of pursuit. I am rather new to this whole venture . . . thus my lack of accuracy and knowledge in what is the best format for me. Hopefully an illustrator will take interest and off their services. I will definitely follow-up with your suggestion of a 3D rendition.

With regards to your questions . . . My timeline is fairly flexible, but I would say mid-June is when I am preparing to launch my website and marketing campaign for my initial novel. As I mentioned, I am truly a novice at this, so I was going to rely on someone who knows and has the talent in the field of photography and/or illustration. About the only thing I do have any sense about is that there needs to be a balance to the work. So while I would prefer a background to which I would be willing to collaborate on, if I get pictures of the characters, I would once again set out with the objective of someone working the photos into a design that is appealing. I now realize that I should have started on this journey a while back. I do thank you for your time and effort in replying to my request and also providing info that I should have considered and announced originally.

One other thing, if you could provide me a means where I may view your work, I will definitely work a story around work that I like of yours. Once again I thank you for being so helpful in my feeble attempt to fulfill a need.
Posted: 04/12/2013, 14:53:32 PM
I charge $500 for cover art. Are you sure you don't want to use clip art?
Nikon D70, standard lens
Posted: 04/13/2013, 08:09:16 AM
Thanks for the update, Gregory. It looks like you've been here long enough to know how Dreamstime works, but I'm a bit concerned that Darla's comment could add some confusion (if not for you, then for other people reading this thread). Any image here at Dreamstime can be purchased for a book cover with the regular license (which is usually only a few dollars) as long as you don't exceed certain rules (such as the number of copies being made). For most authors, the regular license is fine. There are extended licenses for special cases, and the info about when they are needed is here. Keep in mind that any image you buy here can be bought by someone else as well. To get exclusive rights to an image, you have to buy all rights to the image, and that does get more expensive. Again, most people find the regular license to be sufficient.

Thanks for letting us know your timeline. I do really hope that some of the illustrators come in here soon and offer some possibilities. In the mean time, you can search the database for people/characters that are close to what you are looking for. If you find something close, you might post the image(s) in this forum and let us know what you do and do not like about those. You can also look at any of our work by clicking on our usernames. That will take you to our portfolios. I doubt you'll find much in mine right now that is what you are needing, but if you do please let me know. I really need to upload more. :-)

Posted: 04/14/2013, 17:44:49 PM
I thought I'd take a look through the DT database for a few minutes and see what I could find. Are any of these close to what you are picturing for Destiny? Which are the closest, and what would make a better match? There are many more models available in the database; this is just a start. All of these models have more images in other poses & outfits availalable. Let us know. I'll do some searches for other characters later.

   Image not available or id is incorrect.   

   Beautiful Smiling Woman   

   Mixed Race African American Girl Drinking Red Wine   

   Plus Size Female with Red Hair and Bright Jewelry   
Posted: 04/18/2013, 15:14:23 PM
Once again I owe you a debt of gratitude of gratitude for your assistance in my search for cover art. While I have been a member of Dreamstime for a considerable amount of time, I am really just feeling my way around. I have actually purchased several images for the website I am creating . . . but this is the first time venturing into the message board for any reason. I should have been more diligent in finding out the way to format a message of my desire. So I truly appreciate yous assistance. I do understand in purchasing a regular license, that I have no exclusivity to the image . . . and that is fine with me for now. I also thought . . . after replying to your initial message, that clicking on your username would take me to some of your images . . . so I did take a look at your images . . . I like your style, but mostly what I saw was still life . . . so that does not fit into what I now need. Nevertheless, I still intend to use some of your images in some way in other projects . . . because I sincerely appreciate the time and effort you have given me in assisting me through the process of expressing my needs and the specificity needed to draw contacts. I also appreciate you taking the time of sharing the images in your last post . . . that was so thoughtful. I guess I am using the wrong tags in expressing the type images I desires . . . because I sure did not come up with the selections you are showing me. To be honest you have really shown me pretty good models. The last model in the selection has the right body type . . . the second model's skin tone is right on point . . . and while any of the coiffure are suitable, I would prefer black hair. I believe I am going to need to refine my tag search. I must say with the limited info I did provide you, you have opened me up to some other possibilities. I am also contemplating making a post directed specifically to illustrators . . . but for now I will search for models that might bring my thoughts to realization. As for you, dear friend, I thank you so much for the time you have spent in my assistance. I will be in contact with you, because I am going to request your services at some point in the near future. I wish you much success in all your endeavors. While I know this is not a social media exchange, I will be in touch.
Posted: 04/22/2013, 15:17:16 PM
I'm a cover artist and am looking for some specific images to suit an author, there are two different stories:


Gritty picture or drawing of a 20 year old young man leaning against a lamp post at night. He is wearing jeans and a denim jacket. He has scraggy brown hair He can either be looking away or be standing with his head slightly bowed. Hand on his hip with a smoke between his fingers. He's a dark haired fairly long hair about neck to shoulders long.

Second story;

Trey (brunette) is kneeling on the floor mentally crushed, his head down, eyes closed. Justin (spiky haired blond) is crouched in front of him, gripping his neck, Justin's head is bowed into Trey. Both are naked, artful not raunchy. This is a scene from the book and Trey has just admitted he wished he had died, and Justin is clinging to him upset. This is a tough, hard to read scene and the cover would have to emulate that feeling of despair. This can be in black and white. Photo or graphic art.

If you have or know of any images that match these two story outlines, please let me know:
Posted: 04/23/2013, 18:56:16 PM