Do you need illustrations in your book to better describe your words? You may have heard “A picture is worth a thousand words,” which is true in the case of books, as it is everywhere else. So what if you need imagery in your book? How do you handle that? How do you go about it?

Don’t worry; we got your back with these three handy tips that will guide you along.

Research, and plan an outline for the illustrations

You need to research about the illustrations that you would add in the book. Go to the nearest library and look at the images inside the books. Notice the placement, the captions and how the words link to the images. This will give you an insight to add images in your own book that are relevant and do not feel as if they were stuffed in at the last minute. You need to create a seamless flow between the pictures and the prose.

Once you have done your research, plan an outline for the pictures, just like you planned an outline for the book. You can divide the images chapter-wise and list them down. Make a note as you go. If you are explaining some things where pictures would help you, write down that you need 2 or 3 or more pictures in that section. Just like you allotted words in each heading when you decided the word count for the book, you will now add the number of images in each heading or chapter. This will give you an idea of how many illustrations you would need.

Don’t get the illustration work done until you have your first draft reviewed

Don’t get too hasty and pay for the pictures before your book has been edited and finalized. This is because, there may be some sections in the book that your editor might remove or ask you to change, which might mean that you have to remove some pictures along with it, too. And if you have paid for them already, you will have your money wasted on the illustrations that you won’t be using at all.

Make sure that your book is finalized before you pay for the illustrations to be done.

Describe the concept to your designer

Designers have it hard. They have a number of people coming up to them everyday asking them for various projects, and if you just go up to them and say “I need 60 pictures by the next week. Get it done!” chances are that the designer might refuse.

It is a good idea to brief the designer what you want, to make the process easier for them as well as for yourself. Take your trusty outline to the designer and explain exactly what you need. Your designer will appreciate the effort and would come up with illustrations that are precisely what you needed in the first place.

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