Jason Arias

Jason Arias - Designer

New York, NY, USA

10+ years designing covers with versatility + imagination. Clients—HarperCollins, S&S, Scribner, Timber Press, Verso, W. W. Norton, etc.

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I'm a freelance cover designer / illustrator and book interior designer with previous experience working for Simon & Schuster's adult trade imprint, as well as Scribner and Avid Reader Press. I have experience working on bestselling memoirs, literary fiction, historical nonfiction, mystery, popular science, and self improvement. I aim to create covers that are striking at first glance, but convey the author's deeper themes on further inspection.

Select clients include: Bloomsbury, Google, HarperCollins, Harvard Business Review Press, The New York Times, Nonesuch Records, Pluto Press, Restless Books, Simon & Schuster, Timber Press, Verso Books, and W. W. Norton.

Design Process

We will determine the scenes and/or symbols that are the most ripe for visuals. Once we know what imagery we'll be focusing on, I will ask you to submit a selection of book covers that you feel encapsulate the look and feel of the cover you're envisioning. This will include the style of artwork, typography, and color scheme. While some authors have a very clear vision of the cover they want, others are open to interpretation and prefer that I direct the design. I'm open to both approaches and the assessment helps clarify the way forward so we both get the most out of our collaboration.

Round 1:
I typically create between 3-5 cover designs that vary in concept and aesthetic style. The first round of designs are usually delivered within 5 days.

Round 2:
You will select your favorite cover from Round 1 and offer design edits to help bring it to a near-final stage. Sometimes authors are happy with a Round 1 cover as-is and require no further design changes, other times authors will request reworking some of the imagery or typography. I will address all design edits and submit a new round of covers typically within 5 days.

Round 3:
You will select a final cover from Round 2, if multiple designs were submitted, and offer final edits. I will put the finishing touches on the cover and submit a final version typically within 5 days.

Most projects are completed in 3 weeks.

This will depend on your specific requests, but most commonly I will send a package including:
—Print-ready PDF
—Hi-res cover JPG for eBooks
—Mockups for marketing and social media promotion

Additional services:
—Book interior design
—Marketing materials (print/digital advertisements, bookmarks, stickers, wallpapers, apparel, etc.)

*** Are you ready to work with a designer? ***

Here are some of the elements I will need to know before I can begin designing..

For printed books:
—Are you printing hardcover or paperback
—The dimensions of your book
—The company you're using to print your book
—Spine width (determined by the page count of your designed final manuscript*)
—All back cover text (book description, quotes, review blurbs, etc.)
—Author photo
—ISBN and price (required to generate a barcode)
—Colophon logo if you will be releasing your book through a publisher
—A selection of book cover inspiration

*After your manuscript has been finalized, the interior of the book will need to be designed to the specifications of your book dimensions. The page count of your designed interior is then used to calculate the spine width.

For eBooks:
—Front cover copy (title, subtitle, author, quotes, etc.)
—A selection of book cover inspiration
Biographies & Memoirs
Humanities & Social Sciences
Math & Science
Political Science & Current Affairs
Literary Fiction
Mystery & Crime
Science Fiction


  • BFA Graphic Design, School of Visual Arts (New York, NY)

Work experience

Book Cover Designer

Simon & Schuster
March, 2019 – August, 2020 (over 1 year)

I designed hardcover and paperback book covers for Simon & Schuster's Adult Trade, Scribner, and Avid Reader imprints.

Art Director

Scientific American
June, 2013 – May, 2015 (almost 2 years)

I designed the digital edition of the magazine and art directed front-of-book pieces for the monthly print magazine.

Editorial Designer

Condé Nast (Custom Publications)
May, 2013 – June, 2013 (about 1 month)

I worked on a redesign of Delta Airline's Sky Magazine.

Editorial Designer

July, 2012 – May, 2013 (10 months)

I designed the print and digital editions of Newsweek magazine.

Book Cover Designer

Oliver Munday Group
March, 2012 – June, 2012 (3 months)

I helped design book covers and editorial illustrations.

Art director, graphic designer, illustrator

June, 2011 – Present (about 11 years)

Book Cover Designer

Office of Paul Sahre
May, 2010 – August, 2010 (3 months)

I helped design book covers and editorial illustrations.

Portfolio (7 selected works)

The 4 Disciplines of Execution: Updated and Expanded: Achieving Your Wildly Important Goals

Covey, Sean, McChesney, Chris, Huling, Jim, Thele, Scott, Walker, Beverly

Jason has 7 reviews

Communication & Punctuality
Communication & Punctuality

Andrew Serra
Jason was a pleasure to work with right from the start. He understood the look and feel I was going for and found the right image for my novel. He was patient with my requests for revisions and always replied promptly. In the end, I am thrilled with the cover he designed for my book. I highly recommend his services.

Andrew Serra, January 2022

N.S. Johnson
Jason accepted a challenging project and came up with a good solution in a short time. His fee was reasonable, and his work superb. I would recommend Jason to anyone.

N.S. Johnson, December 2021

Evan Watson
Jason was beyond professional and fantastic to work with. He was thorough in asking what my vision was for the completion of the project, a re-design of my book cover. Once he had that, he brought me back a product in the timeline that I wanted and even worked through some personal hardships in order to complete the project. I could not be happier with the end result, and would highly recommen...
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Evan Watson, December 2021

Jason Arias
Thank you for the kind words, Evan. I really enjoyed our collaboration and wish you the best in publishing your book!

Reply from Jason Arias

Peter Fusco
Working with Jason Arias on the cover of my book, "The Grave Stompers," was pure pleasure. The cover is a sepia-toned photo from the 1920s. Its striking simplicity belies the amount of time and thought that created it. Nothing involving art is ever simple, but Jason walked me through the process with remarkable patience and a sense of humor. When I asked for something to be changed, he deliver...
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Peter Fusco, November 2021

Laura Tonwe
Working with Jason was an absolute pleasure. He is a talented artist who had very innovative and creative ideas that he brought to the table for my cover design even from our first meeting. The process of creating the cover was excellent. Jason took in feedback and did quick turnarounds. The final product was amazing. I love my book cover! Jason is very talented and I will definitely hire him a...
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Laura Tonwe, November 2021

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