These 12+ steps will give you a rough idea how I work with self-publishing authors.
1. I read your manuscript carefully to see if it is a good fit for my illustration style and it has enough action for character interaction and page turns.
2. I give you a bid based on the number of illustrations, the complexity of backgrounds, the number of characters, any research for costumes and background I will need to do. I also need to know if you want me to design the cover and layout and compose the inside text in a print-ready digital file.
3. I create a simple contract explaining clearly what publishing rights you have, (full publishing rights for the book being illustrated) and what rights I have as the illustrator, (the right to display the images on my website, my portfolio and promotional materials with your name as author). Also, a rough time frame and a payment schedule.
4. I expect one-third payment when I start work on your illustrations and a $500 deposit to hold a place in my schedule. This deposit is deducted form the first one-third payment. It takes me approximately 6 months to illustrate a 32-page picture book. I only work on one book at a time.
5. I read your manuscript over and over until I can find the best page breaks and actions to use. We want those surprise/reveal pages to be perfect.
6. I start working with you on character design.
7. I make rough sketches of each page in dummy format.
8. Second 1/3 payment is due
9. I make changes if any and tighten up sketches into finished line work
10. We agree on a color scheme and I start painting the illustrations
11. Last Payment is due after I finish all illustrations, receive final approval on all illustrations and they are ready to print. I then deliver finished illustrations or packaged files in a high-resolution digital format to you or your printer.
12. I work directly with your printer or POD service to make sure you get the best printed book results possible.
PLUS+ Hopefully while working together throughout this 4 to 6 month process we become friends.