All art copyright (c) Mike Kloepfer
"The level of achievement that we have at anything is a reflection of how well we were able to focus on it."
-Steve Vai

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Progress on FATED cover art

Cover for Fated -
The new book from
Lisa Fender and Toni Burns

The novel 'Fable – Book 1 of the Lorn Prophecy' is on the bookshelves at, complete with my cover illustration and interior map. 
Fable - Book 1 of the Lorn Prophecy
Interior map for Fable

I met yesterday with the authors to review progress for the cover of the first Novella of the series: 'FATED – Book 1 of the Djenrye Chronicles.'
We are very excited about the book, and the series. We'll be at MileHiCon October 18 – 20; look for us on Authors' Row. Stop by for a sneek peak at the newest book, to check out 'Fable,' and talk with the authors and myself.
This is a dream come true for me. Growing up, I envisioned myself illustrating the covers of Fantasy novels, like my heroes Frank Frazetta and Michael Whelan. And now I'm actually doing it! Not only that, the authors give me plenty of room for my 'artistic vision.' I also get to have fun with typography, which I always enjoy, especially on a project like this one.
(My thanks to fellow artist and designer Phil Normand for showing me so much about typography, which is becoming something of a lost art. He will forget more than I ever know...)
This cover has presented me with some fun challenges. I am exploring different methods of creating textures in acrylic, with the help of Carrie, my agent and fellow artist, who does exquisite textures in her realistic and abstract paintings. I always enjoy breaking new ground and adding new tools to my kit, so to speak.
I can't show you the cover yet, as we are saving the surprise for the release. However, I can show you a couple of closeups – one of the concept sketch, and one with some of the fun textures and lighting in the final painting. I am attempting to create the look of an old wall – plaster or stucco, something along those lines.
Closeup - cover concept sketch

 For the cover, the authors requested an image of a sabre-toothed tiger used as a sigil. Those of you familiar with my work may recognize the look from my previous painting, 'Tiger Eyes.' I find each animal's face interesting, and there is quite a bit of variation in a single species. In fact, I could paint tigers from the same vantage point and never run out of interesting new insights and discoveries. I find the direct gaze of a giant predator to be exciting to paint. However, I did not want to simply remake the same image. Simply remaking previous pieces holds no interest for me at all. Plus, this is not just a tiger; the sabre-tooth is a separate animal, and I wanted to capture the 'essence' of this, in a more graphical form. I researched large cats and archeological examples of the sabre-tooth and combined them into a sigil. The final painting is very exciting and I can't wait to share the end result.
The book is entering the final editing stages and will be released soon. I'll keep you posted as we progress, and soon there will be another in the series of completed covers!

No comments: