BlogTuesday, April 8, 2014
These are the various covers I made for the cover to Spain & Morocco. The first one, at top, dates back to 2004. There is a whole B & W version of the book, done between 2002 and 2005, which was left behind and forgotten (probably for the best). In 2009, I found the whole book in a box, and as I was re-reading it, I thought I might as well put it online. I liked the final pages, but the early pages were pretty rough. So I started re-drawing pages here and there, then decided they needed some color, so I re-drew and re-wrote the whole book, this time in color.
The 2nd cover from the top is the one I used in the online version. It’s ok, but after 4 years of working on this book I wasn’t going to settle for that as the cover, which brings us to the 3rd cover. My approach to the 3rd cover was to fix the things I hated about the 2nd cover, notably that the characters were too small, and that we needed to see their expression better. However, I just created a whole new set of mistakes that bugged me. The composition was especially problematic because both the characters are at the same height. I also re-worked the painting after it was done, and in typical late-night painting mode, I started using gouache (mixed with watercolor) on the faces, which made them look like like black guys. I’d scan that disaster if I could actually find the painting!
So the final version, which is used on the book, was painted in a quick (for me) 4 hour spurt. I did it right after the 3rd version, so I was sharp on how to paint all the elements (cats, flowers, stairs, etc.), and I was happy with how it turned out. The characters are small once again, but I like it better. The cats are better, I think. Ok, that’s it.
The book is available for pre-order, for all you anxious types:
(…and yes, for some reason, the wrong cover was used on the Amazon previews, but that’s ok.)
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