Mark's final black and white art with new type.
Different type variation
Mark's original water colored color guide
First attempt with digital colored art and colored type
Final colored cover for solicitation.
Mark next provided the finished black and white inked artwork. Taking the Futura type font I next went through the process of distressing it, making it look less pristine and more disintegrated. The goal of this cover was to give it a "pulpy" rustic look. I gave Mark a version of the title that was pretty straight forward, close to what he had originally envisioned. I also gave him a version of the title using a condensed version of the font and adding a slight slant to the characters. The second version felt more appropriate to the style of the book and the illustration. Mark and John agreed to using that version.
Mark then printed out a copy of the black and white art and created a water color guideline of how he wanted the cover to look. I used this guideline to create a digitally colored version of the cover. Mark cautioned me that the colors had gotten a little dirty because of painting on top of a photo copy, so he told me to lighten them somewhat. Because of time constraints we had to create a substitute cover, so it could be used for solicitation purposes. Mark's intention is to actually water color the artwork himself for the "real" printed cover. Using his black and white inked art, Mark will make a print out on water color paper and apply the colors to it. A second print out will be made of just the black and white artwork that will be registered on top of the color and then used for printing. I think this is the first time that he has actually hand colored any of his cover images. I am very excited to see the results of his version of the painted cover.
After getting it digitally colored, I put in the black banner with Mark's name at the top and applied the title. I started second guessing myself and thought the banner at the top should appear more clean, and less busted up for better legibility of Mark's name. I matched the color of Jack's shirt to the title, thinking it would be a good balance of reds, I also added the drop shadow to give it more weight and punch.
Mark suggested eliminating the drop shadow and returning the banner at the top to the distressed version. He also wanted the red to be a darker more blood red version, (he thought my version was too feminine, I get that a lot). After a few more attempts at getting the red the right color, the cover was given the final nod of approval.