I can now reveal the cover art I was working on last winter for the novel due out in in the spring- The Witch of Torinia, sequel to the excellent fantasy adventure The Guns of Ivrea, by Clifford Beal. Published by Solaris Books. Learn more on Goodreads.
Updated my website so it’s all shiny and new. Check it out-
Long before the cover appears on bookshelves there’s an extensive process of coming up with ideas and submitting them to the art director. I always ask to read the story to draw directly from the material, but it’s not always made available. Below are just a few concepts I came up with based solely on having read the three earlier novels and the art director’s encouragement to be inventive.
Many people assume that the image is something I paint and hand in. But in fact are a lot of opinions involved with a book cover, particularly for a high profile series such as this. Along with my convictions we also of course have the author, as well as the editors, the art director, the marketing department, and at times some major booksellers weigh in. It can be a lot of cooks in the kitchen.
With that being said, here we go. My main goal was to genuine to the series sensibility and capture both gravitas and finality. One thing was for sure, this was where Blue and the Raven Boys fulfill their destiny.
After a handful of months I was told to depict a stag. The intention to go the symbolic route. Christopher, the art director, mocked up a sketch.
In doing my own development I found that a deer is rather tricky for a cover composition. Large antlers means reducing the size of the deer, which diminishes the animal’s boldness. There’s also the issue of the antlers visually conflicting with the author’s prominent name.
Here are the final variations that led up to the published cover.
It’s been a terrific journey working on this much beloved series over the past five years. I appreciate the opportunity working with Christopher Stengel at Scholastic, the support from Maggie to represent her wonderful writing, and the enthusiasm from all of her lovely readers.
Doves cry. Farewell Prince.
The new look of Sannfæring Airlines :D
Interestingly, there’s a Thai version called Cat Dumb that’s also running the series-