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Terms and Fees for Design and Image Freelance

We are doing extensive traveling in 2024.
This will greatly affect the jobs I can take and the turn-around time. 
All-encompassing terms

The invoice signature, payments or use signifies agreement to terms. Copyrights are not transferable with sale.

I can do images a little different than some book designers as I am also a photographer.  If you prefer a stock image, it is up to you to search for, and purchase that image and use license fee. You are responsible for ensuring you have the rights to any artwork you intend to use.  The image needs to be high resolution to be used on print covers for resale. Make sure you have the rights to use the image where and how you plan to (end product, commercial, resale, single or multi-use, single, multi-application, multi-domain, multi-client ) and make sure the image can have changes and modifications. If I choose to use a stock image in your design you are responsible for its purchase and use rights for how you intend to use the image as the end-user.

I prefer to use images I have taken. and Viewbug are great places to view some of my photographs. You will be charged for the use of the image. That image will be an original unique image as opposed to a stock image that others may be using. Once one of my images has been purchased for use on a book cover, I will not use that same image on another cover. You also have the option of hiring me to photograph an image exclusively for your project. If you’d like to design your own cover I can provide just the image. See photography fees and terms.

I reserve the right to not accept jobs. If your book is against Christianity or takes the Lord's name in vain– I am not interested.

I do not keep or store images or files past 30 days. It is up to you to download and save files to your system.

I normally require 7-10 business days per cover after all decisions have been made including having the image(s) and information (color choice, mock choice, page count, image choice) needed to work with. Sundays and holidays I spend with family and I don't work on those days, Also know that emails send after normal business hours will not be seen until the next business day.  I can not complete a job if I am missing information.  If I think it will take longer based on my current workload I will let you know. If you need rush service, the prices will increase by apx 30%.  If you know specifically what you need, from the time you hire me to having the job complete, it can be as little as a week. The final files will be released after the final payment has been made.

I do not offer computer help and assume that you are familiar with basic computer tasks like uploading, downloading, sending and receiving attachments and emails. Your files will be emailed or made available for download to you. My services do not include working with third parties or uploading your files for you to the printer or publisher.

Breakable, one-of-a-kind or larger items need to be delivered and picked back up as soon as I’m done with the session. We do not have small children and I’ll keep your item in my closed studio, treating it with the utmost care, but I won’t be held liable for broken or damaged items. If this an irreplaceable item I would suggest having someone who will come to your home for photography.

The final payment is due when services are rendered before files will be released. I require a minimum 50% deposit to start your project.

All changes made after files have been made incur additional charges. This is a good reason to know what you are using the images for, what size and resolution you need. This includes reworking file sizes or additional editing.

I do not photography, make multiple files or changes free of charge and my fees apply regardless if you use the images, as I do not work for free.

The fees for photography are for my time spent photographing your images.

I retain all rights to my photos and creations. My images and creations can not be altered, but you are free to use them after payment without incurring any additional charges.

When I say “basic editing” that includes simple things like lightening, darkening, cropping, or basically making a straight out of the camera images ready. Reworking and image, tweaking, blending, masking, photo composites are not basic editing and will incur additional charges.

If you have a question– just ask.  I reserve the right to not accept jobs.

I retain permission to use the designs in my portfolio and for other promotional purposes.

At my discretion, I may post your cover on my sites, or write a blog post about it– hence, free publicity for you!


Credit is Required

Attribution is required for my designs, illustrations, images and photos. Credit must be given on each copy and format, typically on the copyright or illustration credit page for the cover design and photos. My email is not to be published, but it is fine to publish my website or  I reserve all rights of designs I create and images I have taken. When you purchase an image, design or illustration for use, you are purchasing the rights, like a license to use it unchanged. Out of respect for my designs, photos and works, no changes or modifications can be made on illustrations, images or designs, except with explicit prior written agreement between both parties.

Crediting example:  Cover design by Kimberly Maxwell  or if you’re using my images/art/illustration and I’ve designed your cover credit should be applied to both as: Cover design and cover image(s) by Kimberly Maxwell

If you have purchased an image, I will not use that same image on another author’s cover. There is no limit on how many times, or where you use the image after purchase, but credit must always be given and my images and designs must not be changed or modified. Once purchased you have the right to use my photographs and design on your website, promo material, marketing material, etc. without any time limit or restricted number of uses. High volume publishing incurs no extra costs. No royalties, or commissions will be collected, no future fees will be due to me.


The process of cover design

If you would like to hire for your cover design I will listen to what you have in mind, look at similar titles, and offer cover suggestions. If you could answer the questionnaire that will go a long way in conveying your needs.  After talking with you and hearing your vision, I will talk to you about sketch ideas. I use no ready-made templates. What you tell me you want to see- is the start to each design. If you are having an existing cover redesigned,  I will not make subtle changes and copy someone else's work. For blurb back text copy you should already have copy of what you want written for the back cover. I am not a copy editor but I can honestly say less is more. I want you to have a book cover you are proud of and will treat every cover as the unique project that it is.

If you proceed and hire me, a 50% deposit to start your project is due. I provide one rough sketch concept, after discussing that, I provide one mock-up. My time in designing the sketch,  and mock-up are part of the charges listed below, but at this point, if you decide not to proceed, my hourly rate of $35 will be applied to work already performed without work being delivered for use.

Details are made to the one mock-up you approved. I do not make multiple rough mock-ups, changes, or photograph images free of charge; my fees apply regardless if you use the cover or images.

After approving the ₰completed design and payment has been received I will make your full resolution image(s) in the sizes and format you told me you needed available to you by email or download.

All changes made after the ₰completed design has been made, or the cover files have been saved to the format initially specified will incur additional charges. This is another good reason for you to have an idea of what you want and need as far as sizes, page count, print book in hardback or paperback, or eBook before hiring a designer.

After the final payment, full-resolution files will be released.


2024 Pricing

Payment is due when services are rendered before final files are released. I prefer cash or check. I can accept Paypal payments, but please add 3% to cover their fees.  Payable to Kimberly Maxwell. If we have not worked together in the past I require a minimum 50% deposit to start your project.  I will not release any full-size files until final payment has been made. After payment is received I will make your full resolution image(s) in the sizes and format you told me you needed available to you by email or download. It is up to you to send your file(s) to where they need to go, to the printer or whoever is publishing or putting your book in print. 

The invoice signature, payment or use signifies agreement to terms.

All changes made after files have been made incur additional charges.

If you need rush service, or photo work beyond basic editing (see above) the prices will increase.

These prices are subject to change


Photography and Image Prices

I charge for my session shooting time on photography and will provide up to 2 image size/type per product photo. For digital element/illustration/images that I make for you, the prices for photography apply.

For individual product shots I charge $200 per hour session time. Minimum one hour.

Price includes light basic editing. I prefer to bring products back to my private studio to photograph. On custom assignment images, there may be model releases and fees involved with using people. There are additional fees to locate and purchase props, along with travel or access to areas to photograph the image.

For pet portraits, I will provide color or black and white images. The amount of images varies greatly on each pet. Typically between one and four images will be edited and released. I will come to you for pet photography if traveling is within 30 minutes. Price includes light basic editing.

Photographs shot on 255 pure white backgrounds, especially if the product is white, will incur additional editing time charges in addition to the shooting time, as they take considerably more time to edit than most.

My images and creations can not be altered– see above terms.

Providing an image for use, that I have already shot, “as-is” the way you see it now $150. and up depending on the image. and Viewbug are great places to view some of my photographs. The image price is determined by several factors including the demand for the image, the uniqueness of the image and the time or effort involved in creating the image, model, product or property releases

For book cover design without me supplying images, see book cover design prices as the image use fees are separate from the design fees.

Working on your image $40 per hour. Most printers require a 300 dpi image. It is up to you to supply a high-resolution image and verify it can be changed, modified or edited and all releases are in order.


Book Cover Design Prices


This is completely separated from the photo, image or illustration. This is for the graphic design and layout of the cover.

If you’d like to design your own book cover, I can provide just the image for use, see “Product, Image, Pet Photography, and Book Cover Images Prices and terms above.

I scoured the web to find a wide array of pricing and decided not to try to compare my work with others. I came up with what I thought would be a fair price for my time involved.  Just to give you a reference, Amazon’s pricing starts at $99 to make the pdf format you already made, fit their layout. Their actual design fees range from $399 to $1199* for a custom cover which *may incur additional fees.

It is advantageous to purchase all formats you will need initially before design begins,  as changes will run up your cost.

With this à la carte method you are only paying for what you need.  Here's an example. If you need a full flat, ebook front, and an audio cover designed, that would start around $700. for the design fee not including multiple revisions or an image/illustration or changes to your provided image. 

To keep the costs down and avoid revision charges, know what you want, and keep changes to a minimum.

Examples of a §format are the print book, an ebook, the full flat, or an audio cover. Each format is sized differently and requires different specs, a new size ratio/color destinations /resolution. Creating a new layout takes time. It’s helpful if I know ahead of time that you’ll want this so I can give you the best cover in the additional layout.

Designing a front or back cover only -this is in addition to the image charge* $200.

Designing the front and back covers with no spine -this is in addition to the image charge* $300.

Designing a full flat: cover, spine, back– you need to know your page count, paper color & paper thickness for this. -this is in addition to the image charge* $375. If you change your page count. The design has to be changed an will incur additional charges.

*If you have provided your own ready to use image that does not require editing there is not an image charge due to me.

Revisions or change fees that are close to the original design

Each additional revision, after the one initial included revision, is billed at $40 per hour.
A new mock-up concept, including changes in spine thickness, or adding design elements after the initial project will incur charges.

Spine width changes needed, even if the width and height of the book does not change requires recalculating, moving and saving new files for you to upload for the printer. The spine width changes every time the page count or type of paper changes. Most printers will not take the cover unless it is exact. The price depends on time it takes for the change at the rate of $40 per hour. 

If it is a different design it will be billed like a new design on top of the original design fees.

Related Items with Pricing

Logo design, (not trademarked) for a book series or publisher logo, starts at $75.

3D book or tablet image made from your cover photo (see portfolio page for example) $50. each

Social media banner / image design starts at  $75.

After the first banner is made, making additional sizes for other sites will be discounted at my discretion, if the design is similar and I still have the original files on hand. I do not keep files indefinitely.

For work outside of what is listed above, charges start at $40 per hour.

Image fees
Design fees
BD logo-spiral-but-no-line-for-web.jpg
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