#1
My band is coming out with a CD soon and I'm researching where we might get someone to make the CDs and have them with an image on them? As opposed to the blank CDs we would buy at Future Shop or wherever.
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#2
Many companies specialize in this.

Try Precision Sound Corp, I think they have a sales office in Toronto, if not call the Surrey office on the west Coast, pretty sure they have a 1-800 number. They will even set you up with a UPC for retailing. You will find that it will probably be cheaper to get 1000 "pressed" rather than a couple hundred short run. They have lots of options.
#3
Any 'CD duplication' company will do the job. Try and find one that includes printing of the inserts as well, though I suggest you hire a specialist designer for the actual artwork unless someone in the band has good design skills.

I usually charge £20-£50 for full CD artwork, though I'm sure you can get it cheaper (possibly even free) if you can find someone studying design course in university. I've also posted a very brief guide here to doing your own artwork, see below:

Kyle's quick and dirty guide to DIY album cover design:


1) Get some editing software
If you haven't got access to Photoshop, PSP, PS Elements or similar, 'GIMP' is a good freeware one to try. You can probably pick up an older version of Photoshop (7 is a good one) on eBay for a small price.


2) Decide on packaging

Work out how you're going to package the CD and then download the appropriate template here. You've got two main choices here;a regular jewel case (the ones you get albums in) or a slim jewel case (these are usually used for singles and demos). The printing for each is somewhat different.

For standard cases, you'll need:
-151x120mm rear tray insert
-120x120mm or 240x120mm front cover/liner notes (can be single sheet or booklet) [Optional]

For slim cases, you need:
240x120mm front cover/liner notes

If that doesn't make much sense, have a look at some CD cases so you understand how it all fits together.


3) Make some sketches
Talk with the band and decide what you'd like on your cover. For example, you might want a large picture of a skull on the front, with the band's name in small letters on the bottom right corner. If you're new to design, keep it really simple.


4) Get your source image
The quickest and simplest way of doing it is to use a suitable royalty-free image for the cover. Have a look on a stock photo site (stock.xchng is a good free one) and download any images you'd like to use. Don't use pictures taken from the internet unless you have full permission to use them. If so, the resolution should be at least 2000x2000.


5) Find some fonts
Go on DaFont.com and type your band's name into the 'custom preview' box. HAve a look through the different fonts in all the sections, and if there's any you like, download them and install them in the Windows 'fonts' folder.


6) Put it all together
Open up the CD template in your image editor, and then import the photo you downloaded earlier, or use a plain coloured background. Use the text tool to add your band/album name to the image with your new fonts. Play around with the effects and controls until you're happy with the look. The better you know the software, the more you'll be able to do.


7) Save your cover
Ideally, you should save your album cover as a PDF, JPEG or TIFF in CMYK colour, at 300DPI. A high-resolution JPEG image will usually suffice for most places.