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Folks, I have a client, he's a member here: Tom Sheives

He has a book written and we need a good cover, fast. I'm great at judging a cover to be good or not, but I'm NOT graphically gifted to come up with the graphics and look. Here is what he has so far:


Tom is a Project Management Consultant. Last year he worked as the head project management trainer for the Panama Canal Expansion Project, a $5 billion dollar project. Much of this book comes from that experience. However, it doesn't focus JUST on the Panama Canal at all, but on the topic overall...getting an opportunity progressing and successful. This is what he teaches to corporations such as Texas Instruments and Microsoft.

But look at this list of books on the right side of Jon Dale's page...most are bestsellers. We need to match that quality: Jon Dale Blog

Please just reply here if you would, as I'd like everyone to see the process!

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I love the process of getting creative design ideas to highlight a book, instrustional manual or audio set. In addition to having my son Jared work on these I often just put the ideas out in the web as well.

Here are a couple of the most popular:

http://99designs.com/
http://www.elance.com/

I used elance for the cover on Acres of Diamonds that pops up at http://www.48days.com/. Great looking cover - I got lots of designs and then selected this one -- $50.

I think the cover Tom has here needs to be more integrated - blend the designs together.
Tom also asked about putting a quote from a high profile guy on the front cover...I think so, what do you think? And I said his name needs to be much more prominent.

And the picture...I'm not a huge fan of that, but need other ideas.
Hi Kevin,

I just saw this, per your note. Taking the idea above and dramatically enhancing it to something "striking" and "attention getting" is what I do best. I would love to do this for Tom and would be happy to accommodate the urgent timeline involved.

Nathan
____________________
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setting your ideas ablaze for the world to see
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Hi Dan,

I'm just curious what your thoughts are about how sites like Elance are changing the graphics industry.

I am one of the artists on Elance, but my current experience with this site has been an interesting one. I recently bid on a project through Elance that I was estimating about 18 hours of work required to do well. I usually charge about $900 for this kind of job, but the client, who was a pastor indicated that his budget for the work was under $500. The job looked interesting enough that I cut my rates by 66% to fit his budget and offered to do it for $300 (something that I do on occasion for specific causes). He indicated that I was way overpriced and insisted that I lower my cost to "between $100 - $150" for this work. I said "no" and he went with an artist who did the work for $5/hour.

Elance seems to be abounding with artists who are laboring for "next to nothing" rates. And they praise clients like this pastor because he is "easy to work with". I just can't figure out how so many artists can esteem themselves as worth so little. Their agreements to work for these wages seems to be undermining the entire industry. And it has produced a mass of clients who expect "Walmart" prices for something worth so much more.

How do artists, like myself, thrive in the midst of these kind of changes in our industry?

I remember meeting a web designer who used to make $60,000 to produce one "Flash"-based website. But today, you can find talented college-age kids who will do the same work for $6/hour. The opportunity has changed big-time.

Thanks for any help you can offer me on this. I know you love Elance :) and you are the one who motivated me to pursue that service as an option for work.

Nathan

P.S. - I recently finished your book "No More Mondays" and loved it. I have since been searching deep inside for that specific work that God has uniquely gifted me to do.

Dan Miller said:
I love the process of getting creative design ideas to highlight a book, instrustional manual or audio set. In addition to having my son Jared work on these I often just put the ideas out in the web as well.
Here are a couple of the most popular:
http://99designs.com/
http://www.elance.com/

I used elance for the cover on Acres of Diamonds that pops up at http://www.48days.com/. Great looking cover - I got lots of designs and then selected this one -- $50.

I think the cover Tom has here needs to be more integrated - blend the designs together.
Jason - I gave more info on the project in the initial description.

Nathan - I TOTALLY hear you. There will always be folks who will do cut rate work. Look at the internet, there are folks who put countless hours into non-revenue generating endeavors. So to do something and make a few bucks seems good, even if they are making less than they'd make flippin' burgers.

It's up to you not to play the 'commodities' market. Position yourself at the high end...I do that all day.

Now here on 48Days.NET, we give folks resources. The truth is that you can get a logo done cheaply with something like eLance, and I refer clients there too sometimes. I would not encourage you to try to compete with that. A website however, where someone needs to know the premise of the site and work hand in hand...that's not something I've ever gone to elance for. I want someone like you who is of real quality.

Your main goal of doing 3D rendering and such though...that's unique and places you outside of the 'commodity' market. Basically it's when you go beyond mere graphics...to art. That...is positioning.
The only way you can compete with people who are working for so little is to offer more value. Then you have to convince your customer that your value is worth spending more than getting "basic" work from others. You have to show yourself as not having competition because your work is not in their league.

Nathan Fisher said:
Hi Dan,

I'm just curious what your thoughts are about how sites like Elance are changing the graphics industry.

I am one of the artists on Elance, but my current experience with this site has been an interesting one. I recently bid on a project through Elance that I was estimating about 18 hours of work required to do well. I usually charge about $900 for this kind of job, but the client, who was a pastor indicated that his budget for the work was under $500. The job looked interesting enough that I cut my rates by 66% to fit his budget and offered to do it for $300 (something that I do on occasion for specific causes). He indicated that I was way overpriced and insisted that I lower my cost to "between $100 - $150" for this work. I said "no" and he went with an artist who did the work for $5/hour.

Elance seems to be abounding with artists who are laboring for "next to nothing" rates. And they praise clients like this pastor because he is "easy to work with". I just can't figure out how so many artists can esteem themselves as worth so little. Their agreements to work for these wages seems to be undermining the entire industry. And it has produced a mass of clients who expect "Walmart" prices for something worth so much more.

How do artists, like myself, thrive in the midst of these kind of changes in our industry?

I remember meeting a web designer who used to make $60,000 to produce one "Flash"-based website. But today, you can find talented college-age kids who will do the same work for $6/hour. The opportunity has changed big-time.

Thanks for any help you can offer me on this. I know you love Elance :) and you are the one who motivated me to pursue that service as an option for work.

Nathan

P.S. - I recently finished your book "No More Mondays" and loved it. I have since been searching deep inside for that specific work that God has uniquely gifted me to do.

Dan Miller said:
I love the process of getting creative design ideas to highlight a book, instrustional manual or audio set. In addition to having my son Jared work on these I often just put the ideas out in the web as well.
Here are a couple of the most popular:
http://99designs.com/
http://www.elance.com/

I used elance for the cover on Acres of Diamonds that pops up at http://www.48days.com/. Great looking cover - I got lots of designs and then selected this one -- $50.

I think the cover Tom has here needs to be more integrated - blend the designs together.
Here is a quick cover I put together implementing kevins suggestions and some of my own thoughts as to what would make me pick it up. I have no idea how many points he makes in the book, so this is just for illustration purposes.

TIM!! You rock! Ok...where is Tom...I told him to get over here and see this...
Tim

This is really pretty awesome looking. I am not sure i know what to say other than at first glance it is really great!

What does the forum think about blue? Does it look like a business book? (blue ocean, duh..)I would haver never selected blue.. this is really out of the box. ...my company colors are more black and greeen...

Tell me what I should do. Apparently the one I submitted isnt close?

Tim.. really great work.. i went to your website(s).. Extraordinary!

What would I do if I wanted to move to something like this?


Thanks again.,. let me know

Tom
Tim Davis said:
Here is a quick cover I put together implementing kevins suggestions and some of my own thoughts as to what would make me pick it up. I have no idea how many points he makes in the book, so this is just for illustration purposes.

Tom;

The colors can be any that you want. I just chose the blue really out of a quick turn around time to put an illustration with what I was describing. If you want me to complete a true cover design for you, simply give me a call at 615-364-9039 and we can work out the details. That way I can find out the size you need etc. Glad you liked it.

Tom Sheives said:
Tim

This is really pretty awesome looking. I am not sure i know what to say other than at first glance it is really great!

What does the forum think about blue? Does it look like a business book? (blue ocean, duh..)I would haver never selected blue.. this is really out of the box. ...my company colors are more black and greeen...

Tell me what I should do. Apparently the one I submitted isnt close?

Tim.. really great work.. i went to your website(s).. Extraordinary!

What would I do if I wanted to move to something like this?


Thanks again.,. let me know

Tom
Tim Davis said:
Here is a quick cover I put together implementing kevins suggestions and some of my own thoughts as to what would make me pick it up. I have no idea how many points he makes in the book, so this is just for illustration purposes.

Tom

Here is a copy in green and black from the colors of your website.

Here is another idea...

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Check it out!

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