London Art College Competition in Association with Jim Pinnock

London Art College Competition in Association with Jim Pinnock

Author Jim Pinnock has been in contact with us to ask if we would find an illustrator to create a front cover for his book ‘Sparrows with Vertigo’. The book was published in 2011 in digital format by Amazon/Kindle with 50% of the royalties being donated Help For Heroes. The book is now to be published in hard copy and the current artwork for the digital book is not good enough to be used for a paperback printed book. We are creating a competition for our students to submit an illustration for the book and the winner will have their artwork printed on the cover.

We have added a template with the exact dimensions in cms and inches. This template may be opened in your own digital software. Once your design is complete, you will need to turn off the guide layer so that it is not printed on your final product or rejected during the review process. If you are unable to turn off the guide layer, then you will need to format the artwork so that it completely covers the guide layer.

Download Template >>

Also below is a file to download with the text for the front cover, spine and back cover. Type styling is for the student to choose as part of their overall design. Text must not intrude into the barcode area.  Students should submit finished visuals with all type styling included.

Download Cover Text >>

The cover is to be a Matte finish and there are no colour restrictions. Images may be CMYK or RGB colour. All images should be sized at 100%, flattened to one layer and placed in your document at a minimum resolution of 300 DPI.

Although Students should consider this to be an open brief, so a start from scratch project, they may wish to be influenced by the current ebook cover here >> 

  1. Images used on the original cover include a WW1 bayonet, barbed wire, a dark edifice or castle, and of course, a sparrow.
  2. The cover should convey an atmosphere that is: Dark, Sombre, Dramatic and Sinister, and it should reflect the tragic WW1period.
  3. The design does not need to be continued over onto the spine and reverse cover but the principal colour(s) may flow round. Please bear in mind that approximately 200 words of text (see below) would be on the upper part of the back cover. This would leave the lower part for a panel carrying the ISBN number and barcode.
  4. The novel is to be a 5 x 8 inch paperback of approximately 360 pages.

A description of the book is below.

Book cover brief for Sparrows with Vertigo

It is the spring of 1915 and Britain is at war with Germany. Suddenly the full horror of the War is brought to the small market town of Tadbury in Oxfordshire. Detective Inspector Vic Collins, a resourceful policeman, who has served with valour in the Boer war, is called to investigate a disturbance at Stokehanger Hall. The Hall has recently been taken over by the army and converted into a Sanatorium for wounded soldiers.

Vic’s routine enquiry soon uncovers evil offences against his fellow countrymen that both anger and sicken him. He is determined to stop the criminal process and bring the perpetrators to book. His enquiries develop into a complex investigation which reveals a trail of guilt that goes to the very top of the British government. Vic receives no support from his superiors in the police force and so he decides that unconventional methods will be needed to stop the criminal activity and rescue the victims.

All entries are to be emailed to and if you have an y questions please send them to

Deadline for all Entries April 30th



6 thoughts on “London Art College Competition in Association with Jim Pinnock

  1. I too am enrolled on the Children’s Book illustration course. I would love to have a go at this but am a bit daunted with the technical issue of getting the presentation and format correct.

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