Thursday, 11 December 2014

Cover Art

Hey all,

It’s still raining here. In fact, if you’re anywhere near the Pacific Northwest right now it’s probably raining semi-biblical amounts of rain onto your head. We’ve got floods and flood warnings and sandbags being set all up over downtown Vancouver. It’s kind of nice to live at the top of a hill right now—everyone around me slowly drowns while I get closer and closer to having beach(flood?)front property.

Writing has been a lot of the same old me finding things that either need to be fleshed out, removed, fixed, or inserted into the story. There’s a lot of staring at bits of text, writing something, deleting it, and then staring some more going on. It’s not really the most… productive time of writing, when you consider how much new stuff I’ve created at the end of the day, but it is necessary. I’ll probably have to give the book another full read-through at the end of it all to make sure I haven’t done something entirely stupid with the fixing. We’ll see how it ends up when I’m done.

In more exciting news, here is a quite rough version of the new cover art:




Now, as you can see I haven’t really centered anything, the colors might not be 100% where I want them, and the text was almost literally just lifted off the other Dreamstate book and slapped onto this one. Despite all of those shortcomings, however, I really do like the way that it looks. Everything in the picture was created from scratch by me in Photoshop. The two center objects started out as line art that I’d scribbled into a journal and then redid (with proper proportions) on the computer. The hardest part was definitely figuring out a way to make the sun and inner object not look like a face. I have a good ten or so earlier versions (that I might release once the book is out) that look like smiling suns and other goofy things. There are a lot of ways to make something look quite bad, and only a few to make them look good or at least halfway decent. As I’ve said, visual art is not my forte, and I have to go through a lot of trial and error to find a way to make something that I like the looks of.

The gold and the glowing is all just lighting, beveling, and coloring tricks that I played around with in the layer settings. It was actually quite simple once I figured out exactly what I needed to do to make something shiny looking. The background, however, was actually a mistake at first. I was trying to make a smoke effect, like on the cover of the first book. Instead, I messed up a couple settings and had too much color on the page, and I ended up with I don’t even know what. It looked like silk on fire or something along those lines—whatever it was, I liked it and so I kept it.

Also, I can’t really explain what the images mean without spoilerizing some of the book, but trust me, it is relevant. Also, also, next week if I’m still doing the bleh bits of writing, I might talk a bit more about the cover art—I didn’t want to slam everyone with a five page paper on why it was tricky to make, so the explanations are being broke up into the next few posts. Thanks for readin’.

-Trevor

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