The Jobs Board is up and running! | If you need a book interior laid out, visit | Visit our Blog for tips on self publishing

12 Book Covers Featuring Paintings

2022 Edition

12 Book Covers Featuring Paintings

2022 Edition

Professional book cover designers have always used paintings in their jacket designs, but in 2022, we saw a surge in the popularity of this exciting design device. Below are 12 memorable book covers from 2022 that feature paintings, both new and old. If you want to see more book covers that use full bleed paintings, explore the imagery category “paintings,” which can be accessed from the filter bar on the Book Covers homepage.

If you’re an author intrigued by the idea of incorporating a historic painting onto your book cover but are unsure about the rights and restrictions involved, we suggest learning more by reading this article about using stock art on a book jacket.

1. Portrait Of An Unknown Lady

Author: Maria Gainza

Designer: Dana Li

The cover art for Portrait of An Unknown Lady (Catapult, 2022) was painted by 16th-century painter Alonso Sánchez Coello. The painting is called Lady in a Fur Wrap. Dana enhanced the painting by adding the sky and clouds.

2. Checkout 19

Author: Claire-Louise Bennett

Designer: Jaya Miceli

The cover artwork, “Airport” (2011), used on Riverhead’s novel Checkout 19 was painted by Kristine Moran. View more of Kristine’s work here.

3. We All Want Impossible Things

Author: Catherine Newman

Designer: Lauren Peters-Collaer

The cover artwork for We All Want Impossible Things by Catherine Newman was painted by Lauren, the designer. She painted the hand-lettering as well.

4. What We Do In The Dark

Author: Michelle Hart

Designer: Jaya Miceli

The painting used on the jacket of What We Do In The Dark by Michelle Hart is by Jen Mazza. Jen is a New York-based artist who paints and teaches at Parsons School of Design and the Pratt Institute. The painting on this cover is from her 2007 series, Red Letter.

5. Maps of Our Spectacular Bodies

Author: Maddie Mortimer

Designer: Vi-An Nguyen

The cover art for Maps of Our Spectacular Bodies by Maddie Mortimer was painted by Rocio Montoya. Rocio Montoya is a Spanish artist with a particular interest focused on the portrait and the female body. From her website: “The human body in synergy with nature, the female figure and the loss of identity are the conceptual bases of her work, with special interest in the exaltation of emotions through color.”

6. Lapvona

Author: Ottessa Moshfegh

Designer: Stephanie Ross

The cover art for Lapvona by Ottessa Moshfegh comes from the 17th-century Spanish painter Francisco de Zurbarán. This sheep painting, Agnus Dei, (Latin for Lamb of God) is an oil painting completed in the years between 1635 and 1640 and is on display in the Prado Museum in Madrid, Spain.

7. Just By Looking At Him

Author: Ryan O’Connell

Designer: James Iacobelli

The painting for Ryan O’Connell’s Just By Looking At Him comes from Henry Scott Tuke, a 20th-century English painter.

8. Afterlives

Author: Abdulrazak Gurnah

Designer: Lauren Peters-Collaer

The artwork used on Abdulrazak Gurnah’s Nobel-prize winning novel, Afterlives, is a detail of a painting by Lubaina Himid. The painting is called Man in a Pyjama Drawer (2021).

Lubaina is a British artist and curator. “She has been pivotal in the UK since the 1980s for her contributions to the British Black arts movement, making space for the expression and recognition of Black experience and women’s creativity” (Tate Modern). In 2021, her work was exhibited at the Tate Modern in London.

9. Lucy By The Sea

Author: Elizabeth Strout

Designers: Gregg Mollica and Anna Kochman

The cover art for Lucy By The Sea by Elizabeth Strout was painted by contemporary artist Jeremy Miranda. Jeremy is a fine art graduate from Massachusetts College of Art. He’s interested in painting about memory and the landscape and creating paintings that are complex spatial environments that hover between interior and exterior worlds. His paintings are for sale from the Dianna Witte, Room 68, and Nahcotta Galleries.

10. The Book of Goose (US)

Author: Yiyun Li

Designer: Na Kim

The original goose painting for the US hardcover edition of The Book of Goose comes from a James John Audubon watercolor illustration. The designer added the orange circle.

11. Sirens & Muses

Author: Antonia Angress

Designer: Cassie Gonzales

This painting used on Antonia Angress’ Sirens & Muses was painted by Anastasia Balabina. Balabina is a Ukrainian artist. Prints of the original painting featured above can be purchased through the artist’s Saatchi Art page.

12. The Poet’s House

Author: Jean Thompson

Designer: Kelly Winton

Designer Kelly Winton completed the artwork for The Poet’s House herself. She made this image using Procreate and her iPad. Impressive!

Bonus! Cleopatra and Frankenstein by Coco Mellors

Designer: (unknown. Please email us with credit info)

Both of the Coco Mellors editions above feature paintings by Gill Button. Gill Button is a London-based painter known for her captivating translation of found imagery and for creating gestural, intimate portraits that are deeply personal and intuitive.

“Capturing moments of wonder, melancholy, strength or vulnerability, Button’s practice makes us question how we connect to each other, but ultimately to ourselves. Her larger canvases, often cinematic in nature, depict moments of contemplation; evocative of distant dreams, fears or memories.”

-Artist’s Statement

The jacket on the left is the Bloomsbury hardcover edition. The jacket on the right is the international paperback edition. Explore more of Gill Button’s work on her Instagram, here.

Finding the Best Cover Artist for Your Painted Book Cover

The “best” book cover artist is subjective and varies according to an author’s specific vision and style preference. However, platforms like the INeedABookCover Job Board have made it easier for authors to find and collaborate with talented, professional designers like the ones listed in this article who know how to utilize an old or modern painting to create a dynamic, unique book cover.

If you enjoyed this roundup, be sure to check out our collection of book covers featuring paintings for books published in 2023. The cover painting for this blog post is by Berthe Morisot.

Template is not defined.
Template is not defined.
Template is not defined.
Template is not defined.
Template is not defined.
Template is not defined.
I Need a Book Cover Logo
Need a book interior?

Job Alerts

Sign up to get notifications about cover jobs posted on INABC.



Join our mailing list to receive a monthly summary highlighting recent cover uploads and blog posts.