Monday, April 7, 2014

Chapter Cover Art

Black and White cover art: by Thomas Sigwalt

This week's artwork was a challenge for me. I never have done a book cover before so I had to do some more research to inspire me. One of my inspirations was Drew Struzan. Drew is a well-known artist who has made posters for popular movies, like Indiana Jones (Raiders of the Lost Ark, Temple of Doom, and Last Crusade), Back to the Future (I, II, and III), Star Wars (episodes: IV, V, VI, I, II, and III) and much more. 

If I am going be creating a cover piece for this graphic novel, I want to make it stand out. I want the cover to reveal a glimpse of the total story without revealing everything. Because of that, I had to work a little differently than what I am accustomed to to make this cover.

Usually, when I make a drawing or painting I illustrate one scene. I build up the textures and quality as I work further into the art piece. Everything has a focus and a means of telling the story frame by frame. However, for the book cover I cannot work that way. I had to do a collage in order to make the cover I wanted. 

In my cover I piece together a few elements from the story in a way to show balance between the perspectives and the meanings in the artwork. Starting with the masked figure on the top left of the painting: he is an important character that plays the role of a terrorist. For this piece, the guy on the top left represents the danger that is present in the novel. 

Moving on to the cloaked figure right of the book: this cloaked figure represents the mystery surrounding a lot of the issues in the city and this cloaked figure is one of them. I can't go into too much detail without spoiling a good portion of the graphic novel, but what I can say is that don't think everything in this story is predictable.

The fighting in the novel is represented by the two guys fighting below the book. Love that is present in the book is represented by the woman's mouth beneath the cloaked figure.

The top of the artwork is the city that the story takes place in, Leur. Leur has the nickname of the gilded city because of its shiny appearance from the outside, but inside it is a corrupt mess.

The characters silhouetted at the bottom would be the people that cause a change in the  story. Each character has his or her own personality and philosophy on how to deal with a situation. Most of the characters' philosophies end in violence.

The book at the center is what the story is about. Every event in the story revolves around this one book. Again, I can't say too much without spoiling the story so I'll leave you with a question: 

"What can be so important in that book that makes every person of Leur afraid?"

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