Sourcing a Cover Image


When you submit your work, you will also need to upload an image that will serve as the cover of your e-book. This will become the thumbnail image that will represent your work to visitors to the site. With this is mind, a little thought and planning can go a long way to creating a composition of title and cover image that can catch the eye, hint at the subject matter and intrigue potential readers.

Please note: The cover image should be free of text. The title of your story and your name will be displayed within the cover template that is combined with your cover image when the e-book is created. If this text is already on the image, the title and name of the author will appear twice and look strange.


Homemade Images

  • You can take the photograph yourself, or use a photo taken by a friend
  • Likewise, you or a friend can create a piece of artwork to serve as the cover and then digitise it (the artist or photographer can be credited inside the cover)
  • The ideal file size is between 250Kb and 1Mb image - a standard digital or smartphone camera is sufficient for capturing this


Ready-made Images

If you would rather source a ready-made image, you must take care to ensure that you respect the copyright of its creator and avoid using any such images unless you have explicit permission to do so.

There are many images legally available online free of charge, although sometimes paid for images are better quality and have fewer restrictions (for example, you may not need to acknowledge the creator).

Here are some suggestions that may help you source suitable images online.

Please note: these websites sometimes change their terms, so before using them you we recommned that you look at their Terms of Use or FAQs to check the licence conditions carefully.


Free Images

These sites allow you to use their images free of charge; without having to credit the creator:

  1. Freeimages – an excellent source of free images
  2. MorgueFile – another good site for free stock photography
  3. FreeMediaGoo – a small but high-quality collection, many supplied by professionals
  4. Pixabay – another collection of free images


Images Free with Attribution

In these examples, while the images are free, you are required to acknowledge the creator – you will be presented with the option to do this when you upload your work.

Some of these sites use a Creative Commons licence, which allows you to use the images with certain conditions. However, such licences vary, so please be sure to choose one which:

  • allows commercial use
  • allows modification, so that “derivative works” are allowed
  • does not require “share alike”
  1. Google Images – Many of the images searchable here are copyright, so don’t just choose any image you like without checking. However, you can filter your search to show only images which are labelled “reuse with modification”
  2. Flickr – Similarly, the photographs available here are copyright, but you can filter your search to include only those under a Creative Commons licence, which means the image is available for commercial use and can be modified


Paid for Images

They are many sources online for images you can pay for. Here are a few options:

  1. Big Stock Photo – One of many good stock photography sites
  2. iStockphoto – One of the oldest and most popular stock photo sites
  3. Dreamstime – This one has a very good advanced search facility, enabling you to search by image size, price, age of picture, or even the main colours in it. It also has a free section




© 2023 CUT All rights reserved.