Women In SFF: Cover Artists
Here at the Hive we absolutely love seeing a wide range of cover art and designs!
We wanted to highlight all the wonderful female artists and designers who work relentlessly to make so many fantasy covers look gorgeous and entice us readers into wanting to buy them immediately!
A little thank you to Petrik Leo and Eon from Novel Notions who gave us many artists to add to our list. Thank you also to everyone on Twitter who responded and also gave us many more artists to highlight.
This is by far not a complete list, and please let us know if we have left anyone out and we’ll happily add them.
Elizabeth Story is a cover designer based in San Francisco. She is the lead designer for Tachyon Press, and as such has worked on titles such as David Liss’ The Peculiarities and R. B. Lemberg’s The Profound Weaves.
Magali Villeneuve is a French cover artist who has worked on the covers of the French editions of Trudi Canavan’s The Black Magician and the special illustrated edition of Farseer trilogy by Robin Hobb.
Lisa Marie Pompilio is an Art Director and Art Designer at Orbit Books and Redhook.
She’s recently worked on For the Wolf by Hannah Whitten
Miranda Meek is a freelance illustrator She has worked on a few of Brandon Sanderson’s Mistborn novella covers including Secret History US edition.
Tawny Chatmon is a photography based cover artist. For an example of her work, take a look at the stunning cover of A Song of Wraiths and Ruin by Roseanne A. Brown.
You can find Tawny on Instagram: @TawnyChatmon and her Website
Marie Bergeron is the talented artist who worked on the beautiful cover of The Blacktongue Thief by Christopher Buehlman.
She can be found on Twitter @marie_bergeron
Thea Dumitriu who recently worked on The Broken God cover for Gareth Hanrahan published by Orbit, is also a film concept artist.
Francesca Resta is an Italian cover artist based in the UK. She did the gorgeous cover for Flame in the Mist by Renee Ahdieh. You can find her here:
Leah Candace Jacobs-Gordon is a London-based freelance graphic designer who has worked with publishers such as HarperCollins and Random House. You can find her on:
JungShan Ink lives in Taiwan, and her recent work includes the US cover for She Who Became the Sun by Shelley Parker Chan published by Tor. You can find more of her work here:
Sasha Vinogradova is an award winning cover artist. She did The Bone Shard Daughter by Andrea Stewart cover and Girl, Serpent, Thorn by Melissa Bashardoust. She can be found here:
Website | Instagram @melaamory
Lauren Panepinto is the amazing cover designer for Orbit. She has worked alongside many artists on a whole range of covers, which recently includes her collaboration with Sasha Vinogradova on the stunning cover for The Bone Shard Daughter and the upcoming sequel The Bone Shard Emperor by Andrea Stewart.
Here’s a quote from Andrea:
“I find it incredible how Lauren and Sasha were able to take just the feel of my books and translate them into covers that reflect both the content within and the mood. The carvings! The cracking background! The colors! For the second book I only said, “Oh sea serpents and swords are important” and then was absolutely bowled over by the sketch–for which I had no comments except “Wow.” I feel incredibly lucky to have worked with them both.”
Lauren can be found on Twitter @Planetpinto
Karla Ortiz as stated on her website is ’an award winning artist who enjoys working on a diverse and wide variety of projects. As a professional Illustrator her clients include Wizards of the Coast, Ace Books, Tor Books, Orbit Books, CB+P and she has provided cover work and art for various independent authors and toy makers.’
For an example of Karla’s stunning work, take a look at the beautiful cover for The Rage of Dragons by Evan Winter.
You can find her here:
Brit Caley Illustrated Carol. A. Park’s covers for The Chronicles for the Lady Sar.
You can find more of her work HERE
Jenny Zemanek has worked on the covers of Suzannah Rowntree’s series and Benedict Patrick’s series too. Quote from Suzannah Rowntree:
“When I was looking for a designer to cover my WATCHERS OF OUTREMER series I couldn’t think of any artist I was more excited to work with. The best word I can think of is “swashbuckling” – Jenny has the gift of creating artworks in gorgeous, bright, saturated colours and textures that nevertheless seem sophisticated and mature. Add to that her eye for typography and composition, and I felt sure that she would create something truly iconic for the OUTREMER books. She did that and more: these books are supposed to be very historically accurate, and her willingness to incorporate design elements from the obscure time periods in which the series is set means these covers aren’t just beautiful – they accurately reflect the stories within.”
Cindy De la Cruz is a Graphic Designer and illustrator based in Queens, New York. She’s a children’s book designer at Macmillan’s Children’s Group. You can find more of her work on:
Micaela Alcaino is a cover artist who has worked with Del Rey for special editions of the Winternight trilogy by Katherine Arden. She has also worked on the Marion Lane books with author T. A. Willberg, and Ariadne by Jennifer Saint.
You can find Micaela on Twitter @micaelaalcaino
Sue Gent is the cover artist of The Wood Bee Queen by Edward Cox. She has also designed the covers of The Blue Salt Road by Joanne M Harris, and Harris’ latest collection of stories Honeycomb. You can find her here:
Zelda Devon is a fantastically whimsical artist who has fifteen years experience of making visuals for the entertainment industry, such as the cover for Kai Herbertz’ Age of Torridan.
You can find her at her Website.
Luisa Preissler is the artist who worked on the covers for Rachel Aaron’s DFZ novels, starting with Minimum Wage Magic. You can find her on:
Elona did covers for L.L. Macrae’s The Iron Crown and The Citrine Key. Here’s a quote from Macrae…
“Elona from Psycat Studio is a fabulous cover artist! She is so creative, her designs really pop, and she does exceptional fantasy covers! Fabulous to work with, always positive, and quick to fix any issues. Highly recommended and will be coming back to her for more cover designs in the future :)”
You can find Elona HERE
Jen McIntosh is an author and an artist so she decided to do break the cardinal rule and do her own cover art for Blood of Ravens
Quote from Jen – “Honestly, I was really scared doing my own artwork because *everyone* tells you to hire a pro. But I’m also a bit of a control freak and I wanted to at least try, even just to see how it turned out – figured if it was awful I could always get someone else. Ended up really liking what I came up with so just went with it – and it’s been really well received which makes it so special”
Pen Astridge is a popular cover artist who has worked with an array of authors. She did all of Alicia Wanstall-Burke’s covers and Graham Austin King. She also did JP Ashman’s covers and here’s a quote from him.
“Pen Astridge was such a huge pleasure to work with when I needed new artwork for my debut. Not only that, but she continued the theme wonderfully. Such a talented artist and all round awesome person. She allowed me to fall in love with my books all over again.”
Here’s just a few more quotes from authors who have also worked with Pen:
“Pen’s cover for my book, Road Brothers, is evocative art combined with wonderful design, and really captures the mood.” – Mark Lawrence
”ROCKET MAN looks great. I gotta say the cover is not only smart and beautiful but the kind that draws attention and sells books.” – Steven Pressfield
Meg Jolly is a cover artist who “designs dreamy, rich fantasy character covers and adores beautiful typography.” You can find her here:
Janny Wurts is an author and artist, who has worked on her own beautiful book covers.
Here’s a quote from Janny: “The first thousand are the hardest.” — Herbert Gute, who taught at the Paier School of Art. If you want an original one of mine, ‘There is no such thing as born talent, only desire perfected by relentless practice.’
You can find more of Janny artwork HERE
Sara Oliver is an artist from New Zealand, and as stated on her website is a “book enthusiast and graphic designer and illustrator who specialises in creating beautiful book cover designs which communicate the soul of the work.” She has worked on covers such as The Binding Tempest by Steven Rudy.
Here’s a quote from Steven: “Sara listened to all of my input about the cover, (and there was a lot) and was able to synthesize the essence of my novel and all its unique curiosities into a cover that is both intriguing and beautiful.”
Here’s her Website.
Nele Diel has done several brilliant covers for @grimboldbooks anthologies, and has also worked with authors such as Tom Lloyd.
She can be contacted her via Website.
Karen Smith is an in-house cover designer for Watkins/Angry Robot, she doesn’t have a website of her own, but she has recently worked on the beautiful covers of THE MOONSTEEL CROWN by Stephen Deas and the upcoming SWASHBUCKLERS by Dan Hanks.
Quote from Dan Hanks:
”I couldn’t be more in love with this cover. From the piratey-skull face with the games console buttons, to the town houses, the red windows, the 8-bit snow, our magical fox, and a hint of enchanted forest, Karen’s done the impossible. The book is a huge mash-up of so many different elements and yet she’s created a cover that conveys its story perfectly.”
Kieryn Tyler did the cover for Rushes Edge by Ginger Smith.
Here’s a quote from Ginger: “The first time I saw Kieryn Tyler’s art for The Rush’s Edge, I knew immediately it was my cover. It just called to me. The bold black and white illustration perfectly captured Hal and Vivi, the two central characters, and I couldn’t have asked for more. My heart still skips a beat every time I see it!”
You can find her on Instagram @kieryntylerdesign
Leesha Hannigan did the covers for Thornbound and Snowspelled by Stephanie Burgis.
Quote from Stephanie: “I adore the strength and magic of Leesha’s art. I fell in love with her work the first time I visited her online gallery, and when I hired her to do cover art for my own books, I was blown away by how thoughtful and sensitive her approach was. So many of the best tiny details in those covers came from ideas she had based on the world of the books! (Also, I would kill to wear the outfits that my heroine wears on both of those covers.)”
Joanne Renaud is an art director for Dark Valentine Press. You can find her on
Sarah Anne Langton did the covers for Lavie Tidhar’s The Violent Century and Shona Kinsella’s The Flame and the Flood.
Here’s a quote from Shona: “The intricacy and detail of the work took my breath away. I love it.”
Rachel Emma Shaw is a self published author who also does all her own cover designs. You can find Rachel here:
Jackie Morris is an author and illustrator with extensive experience, probably best known for recent work with Rob MacFarlane on The Lost Words and her stunning covers for Robin Hobb.
If we’ve left out any female cover artists you love, let us know in the comments!