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Atomic Fly Studios

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How Much is that Puppy in the Window?

Our Illustration lead-time is usually three to six weeks, depending on current number and complexity of projects.
Click the printer icon on bottom right to print the lists within the dotted line - does not include the drop-down details.


Important considerations:

To begin, we need to have a conversation - even with a basic layout, we need to know your expected timeframe (deadlines) and everything from the specs of the job to details about your story, music, or product. Once we have an understanding of what you need, we will make recommendations, give you an estimate, and get to work. Customizing art for you is a process and there are may be limits as to what can be done. Sometimes we recommend changes based on our expertise and substantial training. Preliminary info can be filled out on our Hire Us Page.
Understand that we are a service company and want you to be happy with your cover, however, we reserve the right to limit adjustments and changes. We charge a 30% “Kill Fee” to allow us to cover any beginning expenses. Additionally, we include our company info and credit the artist as a matter of policy, though we can remove that for an additional fee if requested.
We have devised an illustration pricing method which may seem a little unusual - look over our pricing categories below to see how we can fill your needs. All charges are additive. You can calculate your expected cost by adding the charges from the lists below.

Why separate charges? Why by the figure? Simple - the methods we use take time, materials and effort that is different than traditional media, so we charge by content - and the effort required for the project. This positions us between hourly and flat-rate, saving you money and giving us incentive to work faster, without skimping on quality.

Once done we will supply all appropriate files, formats and color spaces you need for printing, producing and distributing your product. Always read any contract carefully before signing - you will be expected to return a signed copy.

Price list of services available:

Click any option to expand for details.

Layout & Design Work for Hire

Everything in this segment is “work for hire” – which does not need licensing. Most items are additive and assume a single-page, 2-page or front/back layout. Examples are book & magazine covers, DVD and CD (including interior, single-fold; interior CD booklets are billed separate) packaging, box packaging, business cards, flyers, posters and brochures. If you supply the art or photography, we need to know you have the right to use it.

Base Design Fees

Basic layout, design & titling of media – which includes placement of text (using our commercially licensed typefaces or fonts), customer supplied art, logos or photography. This includes small design elements such as dividers and flourishes as appropriate. This also applies to stock template layouts and industry provided templates such as Lightning Source, CreateSpace, or Disk Makers.

Your supplied art or photos only, no added stock art or photo-manipulation included (see Art or Photo Processing below). This charge is the beginning of every job except an art-only job. Single page only; includes a front & back full wraps.
Image processing — includes sizing, cropping, image processing and manipulation of customer supplied photos or art. This could be for photo-manipulation, color corrections, added special effects or enlargements.

In addition to the Basic Layout & Design charge; only added once.
Stock art backgrounds — we have a large selection of commercially licensed stock art and background imagery to give your media a polished look without resorting to licensing of custom art. This is also the charge for a generic background behind a custom figure.

In addition to the Basic Layout & Design or other charges; only added once.
Elements derived from the cover we produced — includes audio book versions, formatted video elements, packaging mock-ups, extra or specially requested web-ready versions, etc.

In addition to the Basic Layout & Design or other charges; only added once.
Staged or location Photography – estimates are free, and done on a per-job basis. Photography takes time, sometimes travel, and equipment as well as expertise. We will need to estimate the time and equipment it takes for each job depending on your needs.

Copyrights & Licensing for Illustration

Art usage is transferred via contract - once we create a background or character, it is our custom art until we transfer rights to you. We offer different types of rights and conditions at different rates, listed below. We try to sell you only what you really need to keep your costs down, and allow us to do prints or resell our art in other ways.

Licensing Fees

For eBook only – includes electronic publishing of any kind, in perpetuity as long as continually published. Rights auto-revert upon intentional publishing discontinuance.

This is in addition to any other printing rights you may need and is solely for eBook rights.

This is for rights only and does not include the art or layout fees.
If you want to use the art for an audio book – this gives you the rights for that version.

This is in addition to any other printing rights you may need and is solely for audio book rights when purchasing a book cover.

This is for rights only and does not include the art or layout fees.
For eBook and P.O.D. Printing (or DVD/CD publishing as a stand-alone product) includes small batches (up to 10,000 total, specifically), covering North American printing rights (with shipping worldwide). Rights auto-revert upon intentional publishing discontinuance. If you intend to print in other countries, or distribute in batches exceeding 10,000 you will need our Mass Production Rights.

This is in addition to any other printing rights you may need and is solely for eBook & P.O.D. rights, or DVD/CD publishing as a stand-alone product.

This is for rights only and does not include the art or layout fees.
Put your cover on everything else – If you need sell, sell, sell, then merchandising is the way to go. This contract if you need to completely monetize your product with a full line of merchandising: tee shirts, mugs, toys, stickers, keychains, mouse-pads, collectables, greeting cards, whatever — anything and everything except art print runs.

This is in addition to any other printing rights you may need and is solely for merchandising rights.

This is for rights only and does not include the art or layout fees.
Sell prints of your cover – this transfers the right to make prints to you. This applies only to illustrated art for a cover job and is not available for just any image. Must be contracted at time of commission.

This is in addition to any other printing rights you may need and is solely for art print rights.


This is for rights only and does not include the art or layout fees. We maintain shared promotional rights to include the image in portfolios, our own advertising, and the right to produce a single large version (our “original” one-off piece).
For projects that require larger quantities — this gives you mass production quantities over 10.000, worldwide printing & publishing, and foreign language rights, in perpetuity. This is instead of the Extended Publishing Rights contract for eBook and P.O.D. (or DVD/CD publishing as required).

This is in addition to any other printing rights you may need and is solely for eBook & P.O.D. rights.

This is for rights only and does not include the art or layout fees.

Illustration Art & Process

We give you 3 major revisions – and will keep you engaged along the way. Minor adjustments and details are expected. We deliver print-ready PDF documents to your chosen printer’s specifications, 6 eBook formatted sizes (we check the publishers regularly for spec updates), 9 web-ready sizes and one each pre-sized banners for Facebook and Twitter. Additional sizes are available.

Illustration Fees

Custom figure — This is what we charge for each main figure - a figure that is large on front and customized to the story. Generally speaking, 3 is the most a standard book cover has room for. Add a figure over stock art to give your piece a custom art look. Main characters are central to a story and a picture is worth a thousand words - who is telling YOUR story?

This is in addition to any layout charges, background, additional figures or necessary rights. Multiple instances may apply.
Support characters — Mid-ground figures don't have to be quite as detailed, but sometimes they are critical to a scene. Of course, these do not take the place of main figures, they are not the main focus. This is what we charge for each mid-ground figure. Added as many times as necessary to create a full cast!

This is in addition to any layout charges, background, main figures or necessary rights. Multiple instances may apply.
Two is company, ten is a crowd — Background figures don't have to be as detailed, but sometimes they are critical to a scene. This is what we charge for distant figures, alone or up to 8 in a group for each charge. Added as many times as necessary.

This is in addition to any layout charges, background, main figures or necessary rights. Multiple instances may apply.
Flocks, herds, schools and death – Oh My! Whether your cover needs a murder of crows, a death of ravens, a glaring of cats, a mischief of rats, or a herd of cows… we’ve got that covered too. Animals require special treatments, and this covers a single main character animal, 4 mid-ground animals or up to 8 in in a background group such as flocks or herds for your barnyard.

This is in addition to any layout charges, background, additional figures or necessary rights. Multiple instances may apply.
When stock backgrounds aren’t enough – includes conceptualization, creation & illustration of a complete environment based on your text or input, not including animals or people (see additional charges for figures & animals). Your characters don't live in a vacuum, they are in your world - this takes more time, but the results are a fully customized art piece for your cover, especially when adding any of the above elements such as a couple of main figures or animals in the background.

This is in addition to any layout charges, figures or necessary rights.

Favorite Bundled Bargains

Our most economic bundle – a generic stock background appropriate for your book, DVD, or CD, titling and layout of your supplied text & logos. Does not include any custom art or figures. “Stock” may be from our fully licensed library, our own previously created stock, or a newly created generic landscape at our discretion. Client provided photography or art may be substituted.

Normally $80 - $130 if purchased separately.
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Example of stock art layout done for Gannet Mountain Press
Our basic eBook deal – a generic “stock” background of our choice (appropriate for your book), a custom figure, titling, and our Rights for eBook use only. “Stock” may be from our fully licensed library, our own previously created stock, or a newly created generic landscape at our discretion.

Normally $190 - $240 if purchased separately.
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Example of a generic background with a main figure for an independant author
Our best semi-custom bundle – a generic stock background of our choice (appropriate for your book, DVD, or CD), a custom figure, full wrap cover layout with titling, and our Extended Publishing Rights for eBook & P.O.D. “Stock” may be from our fully licensed library, our own previously created stock, or a newly created generic landscape at our discretion.

Normally $240 - $290 if purchased separately.
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Example of a generic background with a main figure for Sky Warrior Books
Our complete custom bundle – a fully custom background, up to three custom figures (or two main figures & 3 mid-ground figures, animal substitutions, etc.), full wrap cover layout with titling, derivative extras, and our Extended Publishing Rights for eBook & P.O.D. (or DVD/CD publishing as required).

Normally $450 if purchased separately.
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Example of full wrap cusom envirement with 2 main figures, 3 background figures with animals added
Have it your way – this is the full enchilada, customized background, as many main figures and background figures as you could want, all publishing rights except for shared promotional rights. Pretty much, everything you could possibly want, including full merchandising rights and as much art directing as we can stand. We’ll even put you up first. This is basically what we charge for all rights, with the art thrown in for free. You can’t get a better deal from us.

We maintain only shared promotional rights to include the image in portfolios, our own advertising, and the right to produce a single large version (our “original” one-off piece).

Additional Options, Services & Fees

We automatically include our credit — studio and/or artist credit (when appropriate) on everything we do. We put it in with the other publishing information you provide. Sometimes an author doesn’t want that on the back of a cover - this is what we charge for removing it.

Keeping that credit on is how we keep our prices low - we advertise with each job… but the choice is yours.
Emergency Expediting Fee – Jobs are put in our cue as they come in, occasionally shuffled according to need, speed, and deadlines beyond our control. Often quick layouts are done as we work on creating art for something else. This will put your project on the top of our list.
Excessive changes Fee – We do our best to limit our fees and charges so you can have great art at great rates. Sometimes clients exceed the scope of our initial discussion of charges and require more re-starts or details than was initially accepted. This is what we charge if we have to go beyond what was agreed upon, or if we need to start over after multiple tries without killing the project. Other charges may also be incurred upon project scope re-assessment.

See descriptions of the illustration process, above. We reserve the right to require this charge be satisfied before a project re-start can proceed.
Author Branding for you and your publicist — Not exactly a logo (not vector art or infinitely scalable), this specialized branding banner design is labor intensive and requires a direct communication pipeline with rapid response during the production. We will give you multiple options at each step – upon completion, you get a high resolution 8 x 5 inch banner suitable for print and SWAG, assorted web-ready versions & social media specific versions for Facebook & Twitter or to other specifications you provide.

This is work for hire and you retain all rights. Suitable for enlargement for basic banners and advertising.
Company logo as you direct it — Logo design is labor intensive and requires a direct communication pipeline with rapid response during several phases of the production. It also requires designing as vector art for infinite scaleability – think business cards to billboards. We will guide you through the process and give multiple options at each step – upon completion, you get all design files and assorted web-ready versions.

This is work for hire and the customer retains all rights.
Multi-page interior layouts — Book and magazine interiors including table of contents, chapter headings, image & text placement, minor image processing, preface, and special segments as required. Price depends on complexity and number of pages.

You supply all content unless otherwise agreed upon. Additional charges may incur for extra image processing, ad creation, special elements to be created for inclusion, and so on. You will need to give us a complete accounting of requirements for the job so we can work up an appropriate estimate.
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