frequently asked questions

How quickly do you complete commissions?

This depends on our current workload, and can vary from two weeks to three months or more. When we provide you with a quote for your project, we will also include a timeframe in which we will be able to complete it. For certain situations, we may be able to achieve a shorter turnaround, and are happy to discuss this possibility with you.

Will you look at a map I made and tell me how to improve it?

Yes! If you have drawn your own map and would merely like advice on how to improve it, we do offer consultation at a low rate ($35). This includes a detailed list of suggestions as to how you might improve your map, a study of your world's believability (things like: do mountains really look like that? does the scale of your world make sense?), and advice on how to go about printing your map.

Can you provide prints of my commissioned map?

Currently, we do not offer printing services for maps. However, our maps will be print-quality, and upon request we can provide you with a list of printer recommendations.

Can you make an RPG map for me?

Absolutely! Check our portfolio for samples of our gaming maps.

Who do you design maps for?

Our primary clientele consists of writers, publishers, and others in book industry, specifically in the genres of fantasy and science fiction. We can design for indie authors, game makers, industry professionals, or anyone simply wishing to see their fictional world brougt to life in loving detail. Browse our testimonials page to see what our clients think of our work.

Do you do concept work?

Yes! If you don't have the need or budget for a full-scale, deluxe map, we can offer a reduced rate for "concept art," meaning maps which are fairly bare-bones but which make for excellent references for writers or game masters. If you'd like to see your story world visualized, but don't know where to start, we can work with you to develop world, region, or city concepts which you may then use for your own personal reference.

What if I need changes made to a map after it's finished?

Throughout the design process, we will be in touch with concept art and works-in-progress for you to check over and approve, so hopefully we will catch any changes that need to be made before the commission is completed. However, we know late changes can happen, so no worries! For a small fee (contingent on the size and scope of the revision), we can revise past commissions.

Do I get the copyright for the map?

Exceptional cases outstanding, we retain the copyright of all our works, for use in our portfolio or otherwise. We offer two options for clients, and we will determine early which route is best for you: 1) Commercial rights: this means you, the client, will be able to use the piece commercially, as a book cover, illustration in a novel, or to sell reprints. This is the more expensive option. 2) Non-commercial rights: this means you, the client, will be able to reproduce the piece digitally or in print for personal use, but you will not be able to use it for monetary profit. Which means if your publisher decides to print the map in a book, they will have to contact us and purchase the commercial rights.

Do you provide contracts for commissioned works?

Yes, before we ever begin your map, we'll ask you to sign an artist/client agreement specifying the map, deadline, price, and rights being transferred upon completion.

Do I pay you before or after the map is finished?

We ask that 1/2 payment be made up front as a deposit, 1/2 upon delivery of the finished work. Should events prevent us from finishing your commission, you will be issued a full refund of the deposit once the contractually agreed-upon deadline has expired. If for any reason other than artist's noncompliance you decide to cancel the commission, the deposit will not be refunded. Payments in thirds or even fourths may be available in special circumstances.

How much does a map commission cost?

This varies widely, based on a number of criteria: the size of the map, whether you wish to purchase commercial or non-commercial rights, the level of detail the map requires, the amount of time you need it in, whether it's black and white, full-color, or simple concept art, and other variables. Contact me with your specific needs so that I can provide you with an accurate quote. Jessica's maps generally start at a minimum of $250; LeslieAnn's at $100. Prices may increase depending on the project scope.

Where does the name Lizard Ink come from?

Yes, we get that one a lot. When Jess was in elementary school, she "self-published" a series of newspapers and books under name "Lizard Ink Press," which was named after a favorite book of hers, Lizard Music by Daniel Pinkwater. Ever since then, she always knew if she started her own publishing or design business, she had the perfect name.

What medium are your maps?

Most of our maps are made digitally. But at a slightly higher fee, we also offer unique, hand-painted watercolor maps as well. See our portfolio for examples of each.

Which mapmaker will handle my commission?

If you have a preference between Jessica and LeslieAnn, please note it in your inquiry. As master mapmaker with 4+ years of experience, Jessica's maps tend to cost more. As an apprentice, LeslieAnn can offer lower rates, and her work is done under Jessica's direction and guidance. If you're unsure who you want to handle your commission, we can help you decide who is the best artist for your project.