Quick Guide: Cover Design – New/Revised Edition – FAQs


Can I request the use of a specific color for my book cover?

Of course! If the color is a general color preference (red, light blue, orange, etc.), simply include that information in your Marketing Questionnaire or other communications to your cover designer. If the color you’d like incorporate is more specific (pewter, fuchsia, mauve, aquamarine, etc.), please provide your cover designer with a visual example of the color for their reference.

Can I provide photography or request a specific image for use in my book cover?

We use stock photography as foundational material for all Cognella book covers and then professionally adapt the imagery to create a unique and relevant cover design. Using stock photography allows us to use imagery that is readily available to us, is print quality, and does not require complex licensing considerations—as many public or generally sourced images are copyrighted. We also do not have access to photoshoots to create imagery in-house.

If you have a specific image or concept in mind, feel free to send examples and talk through your ideas and what you’d like your cover to convey with your designer. Our designers are resourceful and creative and will work with you to find and create imagery that successfully captures the spirit of your book, even if we are not able to use the exact image you submitted.

Can I request a complete redesign for my new edition?

This often mirrors the degree of changes you are making to your book’s content during its revision. If the changes are minimal and the overarching theme or focus of your book isn’t changing, it may not make sense to dramatically revise the cover artwork, though other changes such as color, font choice, and so on may be possible. If the changes to your book are significant and the existing cover concept no longer aligns with your text, talk to your project editor to see if a redesign is appropriate.

Can we include endorsements or marketing reviews on the cover of my text?

There are a few key reasons we do not include endorsements or marketing reviews on the cover of your text. Due to physical space constraints for your cover, we like to focus on clean, compelling imagery and fresh title treatment on your front cover, and an insightful book description and an author biography that establishes your professional credibility on the back cover. Additionally, the inclusion of endorsements is largely a practice in the trade market, but it doesn’t cross over into the academic market. Accordingly, including endorsements on your cover might confuse the academic community or potential adopters, as they might mistake your text for a trade book. Often, for academic textbooks, endorsements appear in the form of a foreword written by a distinguished colleague within your field of expertise. Ask your project editor for more information if you’d like to include this type of content within your text.

Reviews and endorsements can absolutely be included online on the title page for your text within the Cognella Title Catalog. Your book’s title page will include a dedicated space for reviews, and our marketing and sales teams may use these endorsements in their marketing and promotional efforts for your text.

Can my cover feature a famous celebrity, artist, or figure from history or pop culture?

Imagery that features a well-known individual—or the work they’ve created (for example, visual artists)—is generally not available for commercial use. Acquiring the correct permissions and licensing for any such imagery can be especially challenging. However, our cover designers have experience in rendering famous figures and characters in artistic ways and envisioning new ways to represent particular people, concepts, and pop culture references.

Here are a few examples of our successful re-imaginings as cover art:

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Unsure of next steps or have additional questions? Ask your project editor!