Dion MBD

Dion MBD – Designer

Illustrator/designer specializing in Young Adult and kids lit. Past clients include Scholastic, MacMillan, and Houghton Mifflin Harcourt.


Hi, my name is Dion, an Indonesian illustrator/designer living and working in Brooklyn. Creating works that are both conceptual and narrative-driven, I have had the chance to collaborate with clients such as the Scholastic, MacMillan, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, and the New York Times. The most recent book cover that I did is for Mike Jung's the Boys in the Back Row. It will be published as the first line-up from Levine Querido, the new publication founded by Arthur A. Levine.

When working with clients, I focus on 3 things: developing concepts, producing stunning visuals, and being professional. I put emphasis on coming up with a strong idea. I begin by talking to my clients not only about the book but also their thoughts and feelings on the subject matter. I then send a few sketches that we will choose and build together into a tight drawing/layout. I am open to a few revisions during this drafting period to nail down the specifics. Once I finish a tight drawing/layout, the project is open for another revision to ensure the final design/illustration will be perfect.

Every book is unique and it is my job to highlight the different voices and put them in the spotlight!
Coming of Age Middle Grade Picture Books Young Adult
  • Adobe Top Talent Award
  • Japan Illustrators Association Silver Medal
  • Creative Quarterly 56, 55, 51, winner
  • Zankel Scholar Runner Up 2018
  • Howard Koslow Memorial Scholarship
  • Florida Watercolor Society Scholarship
  • Bachelor of Fine Arts

Work experience

MacMillan Publisher - Imprint

Jul, 2019 — Feb, 2020 (7 months)

- Established initial concepts and direction for a non-disclosable cover for a book about a coming-of-age story and domestic abuse.
- Illustrated 2 drawings to capture the heavy concepts using surreal imagery.
- Generated 6 sketches for the novel the Half Orphan, a coming-of-age story about a girl who lost her father to suicide.
- Created color directions for the book cover ideas based on revision notes from art director and publisher.


Jun, 2019 — Aug, 2019 (2 months)

- Sketched out 4 ideas for a young-adult, coming-of-age book Asha the Spirit Bird by Jasbinder Bilan
- Revised 2 drafts within a tight deadline of 3 days
- Finalized a full-color wrap-around dust jacket utilizing both digital and traditional media within the deadline of 7 days.

Houghton Mifflin Harcourt

Jun, 2019 — Dec, 2019 (6 months)

- Generated 6 concept sketches for the book cover Prairie Lotus by the Newberry Medalist, Linda Sue Park.
- Summarized a story about racism and coming-of-age through the use of surreal visuals.
- Generated a full-color portrait of the main character in front of a grassy landscape utilizing both traditional and digital media.
- Sketched out 7 compositions for the excerpt of the story Untwine by Edwidge Danticat
- Illustrated 5 full-color illustrations to capture the somber and mournful story to be published in the textbook Read 180.


Aug, 2019 — Feb, 2020 (6 months)

- Produced 3 sketches for the science-fiction story Necessary Arthur by Garth Nix
- Completed a full-color, space-themed illustration using ink, graphite, and digital media
- Delivered 3 sketches and 1 simple animation for the story More Real Than Him by Silvia Park.
- Finalized robot and science-fiction themed portraits utilizing graphite and digital media.

Levine Querido

Aug, 2019 — Oct, 2019 (2 months)

- Submitted 4 dust jacket concepts for the novel The Boys in the Back Row by Mike Jung. The story revolves around comic book enthusiasts who experience racism and homophobic treatments from their community.
- Created 3 color directions to capture the adventurous, intimate, and humorous mood of the story.
- Completed 1 full-color illustration, 1 spot illustration, and typography for the book cover.


May, 2018 — Dec, 2019 (over 1 year)

Created narrative-driven character designs, background, style frames, and assets for commercial projects for clients such as Uber, Facebook, Chik-fil-A, Delta Airlines, etc.

National Geographic Indonesia

May, 2017 — Jul, 2017 (2 months)

Illustrated dance moves for the story about Sang Hyang Dedari, Balinese dancers who perform in a trance state of mind.


Jan, 2015 — Present

Creating Illustrations and designs for both self-publishing writers and big publication houses. Previous clients include Scholastic, Macmillan, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, Levine Querido, and.


The beginnings of a tentative friendship between two roboticists complicated over career envy, female beauty, and a stolen robot designed to resemble a famous Korean actor. Silvia Park's Tor.com Original short story about artificial intelligence "More Real Tha... read more
My Heart Song

Sister Solana

Life on Windy Mountain is predictable and ordinary, until an unusual squirrel dazzles his way through and surprises its many furry creatures along the way.
Elpa senang sekali! Hari ini ia akan bermain bola bersama teman-temannya. Elpa berlari penuh semangat. Bum! Ia menabrak Sisi sampai wortelnya berceceran. Elpa harus bilang apa kepada Sisi?
Prairie Lotus

Linda Sue Park

Prairie Lotus is a powerful, touching, multilayered book about a girl determined to fit in and realize her dreams: getting an education, becoming a dressmaker in her father’s shop, and making at least one friend. Acclaimed, award-winning author Linda Sue Park ... read more
In contemporary India, 12-year-old Asha will journey across the dangerous Himalayas to find her missing father and save her family's home -- guided by a mythical bird and a green-eyed tiger who she believes to be the spirits of her ancestors. This is an incred... read more

Dion has 3 reviews





Charlene G.

Charlene G.

Jun, 2020

The cover is everything I hoped it would be. Dion has been such a joy to work with, and I sincerely hope we will work together again in the future. I have no problems recommending Dion to anyone searching for illustration/cover design.
Dion M.
Thank you, Charlene! It was a pleasure working with you and your tender writing.
Miran K.

Miran K.

Apr, 2020

Dion was a joy to work with. His creativity and professionalism are exceptional. Thanks again Dion! Miran, author
Dion M.
Miran was a great client who was clear with his vision and what he wanted for his cover. He even hired an art director to ease the process of me creating the illustration for the cover. I could not...
Read more
Sita B.

Sita B.

Apr, 2020

At every stage of the process, Dion's work blew me away! He captured the essence of the novel and character so beautifully and powerfully and the final design exceeded anything I imagined! His work is very thoughtful and detailed and he seems to have a special way of finding the soul of something and portraying it in a very unique way. After a lot of research, I feel truly grateful to have fo...
Read more

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