Variant and sketch covers

Make your comic book or magazine a real collectors item by adding a variant cover featuring amazing alternative artwork or by adding a sketch cover so artists and fans can customise your book.


Variant covers

A popular part of the comic book collecting community, variant covers refers to a comic printed with a variety of covers, but the same internal pages. These may have different artwork, or a different finish, and are usually produced at a lower volume to make them more collectable and encourage fans to pick up multiple copies. They are also a great reward for Kickstarter campaigns. For example, TPub Comics offered two fantastic covers for their new book The Theory.

To request a variant cover, simply contact Mixam for a custom quote and then supply a separate variant cover file that is clearly labelled. Please note we can only offer this option on larger offset print runs (typically >750 copies) and it is not available for smaller digital print runs.

A comic book with two distinct covers
A comic book with two distinct covers

Sketch covers

Another popular part of the comic book community is a sketch cover. These special edition covers are usually left blank, or just feature the comic’s logo, and are printed on uncoated paper which allow another artist to draw their own artwork on to them.

Sketch covers can be added as an extra to the front or back of a comic, and the original cover artwork can be included inside as one of the early pages, or as a pin up at the back.

To create a sketch cover as a variant, follow the instructions above. Or to include it as part of a regular print run, select ‘Uncoated’ paper for the cover section in the instant price calculator.
Please note that uncoated paper will be used for all parts of the cover and special finishes like lamination cannot be applied.

Example of a sketch cover
Example of a sketch cover