I know I’ve been a bit quiet lately. That’s because I’ve been working on all the art for this:
You can visit the Kickstarter here to learn all about it.
Just found out “Union Station 1, 2 and 3” bundle, hit number one on Amazon’s “Humorous Science Fiction” Chart! And “Union Station 1″ is number two! ” While Union Station 13″ is number Four on the chart. Just wow…
Well done E.M. Foner!
When Gurin got in touch with me he told me:
“I’ve seen your work for E. M. Foner’s Union Station series and I think your style is exactly what I am looking for.
I have the concept for what I want, based on an event in the book, and it does include a beautiful woman which I want to be sexy, innocent, funny but not sexual. That is why I think you’re work on Union Station is spot on.”
I liked the sound of this and after reading the book the image almost created itself in my mind. It’s an unusual book that tells the tale of a very different alien abduction. The protagonist has a lot of extraordinary experiences to deal with and uses his razor sharp, yet gentle wit, to carry himself (and the reader) through the journey of a lifetime.
Guerin’s original idea was to have one of the main characters posed as I’ve shown her in front of the shuttle and while I liked this I was afraid it wouldn’t indicate enough of what the reader would experience so I decide to feature some of the more spectacular scenery from the book too and after I’d worked out a layout, we both agreed this was the way to go.
I’m sure if you care to look you’ll see some of the influences there. My buddy Jim Burns (he’s so good at alien tech and aliens in general that I always have to look through his stuff just try and get into that headspace) , Chris Foss (for the sheer massive scale he can imbue in his work), Peter A. Jones ( for the dynamism and the colour), Todd Lockwood (whose painting technique and compositional sense astounding to me) and I’m of course trying to channel a little Frank Frazetta there (and I feel like maybe I succeeded a little this time).
I have to admit to being very pleased with the end result.
You can pick the book up here:
and posters are here: http://keithdraws.deviantart.com/
He writes science fiction and Fantasy with a light comedic twist. In this case the cover for “Meghan’s Dragon” was to feature a young girl and her Dragon (who happens to also be extremely hungry all the time). And I have to indicate the humor found in the story.
Comedic illustration is never the easiest thing to do but when it’s done well it can be hilarious.
For me there is nobody better at this than Mort Drucker (famous mainly for his work in Mad Magazine).
So when faced with this challenge I looked at what he does. And what he does is incredible, he sets up situations and then punctuates the joke using the characters facial expressions. I also looked at the Dragons created by Todd Lockwood, which are all pretty scary and used that as a direction to avoid! So with that in mind I set about working on ideas and after several roughs and some to and fro between the Author and I/we finally settled on this.
My indicator that it works is that my kids laugh at it and immediately make up stories about what’s going on.. Mind you, They are both under 9 years old and they laugh at my jokes too, so maybe that’s not the best guide.. Anyway..
It’s probably the first time ever that I’ve welcomed people laughing at my work! Maybe I’m dragoning this post out a bit so I’ll end it here.
Here’s where you can get this book: https://goo.gl/iuLvGb
And posters are available here: http://keithdraws.deviantart.com/gallery/
book cover, Bryan Choi, Cover Art, Cover design, Erica Carson, Fantasy Art, Frank Frazetta, golden ratio, Horse, Horseback, illustration, Keith Draws, science Fiction, Science fiction art, Swords of the Imperium, Todd Lockwood, Warrior on horse back
Working on a series of covers is always a challenge and it’s important to retain a strong identity and feel. So far so good I think.
This is the second cover for the new series of science fantasy/dark fantasy books by Brian Choi and Erica Carson.
If you want to buy the book or want to know more about the Authors :
Amazon/KDP sale site: https://goo.gl/M9bxyO
Author website: www.carsonchoi.com
Author facebook: www.facebook.com/Bryan-Choi-16…
Author twitter: @bchoiemdoc
Posters here: http://keithdraws.deviantart.com/gallery/
Comic, Comic Art, Cover design, DC, Fantasy Art, golden ratio, illustration, Keith Draws, Liam Sharp, Magic, Outlier, science Fiction, Silent Machine, Smoke Bomb, TFN, Twelve Foot Ninja, TwelveFootNinja, Wonder Woman, WonderWoman
And I produced the cover art. Credit where credit is due though, TFN always have very strong ideas and without their direction this cover would not have worked half as well.
You can get it here http://twelvefootninja.com/
And this is their new single which I also did the cover for:
I’ve been working with TFN since 2010 and in fact they were probably the main reason I was able to move my focus to illustration.
Initially they asked for artists to send a couple of comic panels as samples since they were intending to produce a comic and or graphic novel. I don’t normally do this, but for some reason I had a good feeling about this work and so I produced the following.
Two incredible things happened. First the amazing Liam Sharp (currently the lead artist on Wonder Woman for DC) and blew my mind with this comment on my deviant page and I have to say that is probably one of the most inspirational moments of my life. A moment when it felt like all the effort was worth it after what seemed like an eternity of losing battles. I’m happy to say that we also became friends (even if it is only on social media). If Liam had not left that message I suspect I would have gone down another path.
It only gets better… After I’d given up on hearing back about the samples, Stevic from TFN got in touch with me and told me I’d got the Job.
From that point on I worked with the band mainly through Stevic and Dave MacGregor (their manager who they work very closely with). things went well. I worked on a lot of concept with them, finally deciding on the look of the Twelve Foot Ninja and we produced the cover for their second CD
Now we moved on to the next major project. The album “Silent Machine”
It had 12 tracks and each would have it’s own 6 page comic making up a graphic novella to go with the album.
I produced all the art and wrote the adaptation from the original plot/novel. But I had to tie the stories in with the songs. They pretty much gave me a free hand so long as I stuck to the plot; and the songs are very inspiring which made it a lot easier. It was a hell of a job, on a tight deadline, but we did it!….And I’m very proud of this work. Here are some pages.
I’ve worked on lots of other projects with them over the years and they have done a lot to help me out through some difficult times. They are great people and I doubt I’d even be doing this if it wasn’t for them.
Oh and I’m also working on another new project with them right now so watch this space, it’s going to be awesome!
All art produced for “Twelve Foot Ninja” is copyright “Twelve Foot Ninja” and is reproduced with permission.
Okay so it’s only on social media but hell! This is a man who has been a great influence on my work for as a long as I can remember being interested in Science fiction and he actually takes the time to talk with me. I think the first time I saw his work (at least attributed) was in Omni (a Science fiction and fact magazine) in the late 70’s.
The thing that stuck me about the way he worked was was his ability to contrast very human Star-ships, machinery and people with incredibly “alien” Alien star-ships, machines and characters. The alien part of his work can be almost jarring in it’s difference, and yet at the same time it looks very natural in the scene.
The realism of his work and the incredible detail he applies meticulously have always been something I strive to achieve, with varying degree’s of success, but I have to say the most important thing he does is to take the viewer away from the current reality, into the reality of his science fiction. And something about the way he does this seems to connect to the almost primeval parts of the mind. The effect of looking at his work is almost like experiencing recovered memories, filled with the almost overpowering emotions of awe, excitement and discovery. The truth is when I look at his art I almost become that “starry eyed teen” again. Speaking of being a “starry eyed teen” I remember the first time I saw the cover for Stanislaw Lem’s “The Cyberiad: Fables for the Cybernetic Age” painted by Jim. The image is so alien and yet at the same time so fascinating that it has stuck with me. I don’t think I’ve ever seen an image that had such a profound effect on my outlook before or since.
Since I was first introduced to Jim’s Art I wondered what it would be like to have the opportunity to work on such images. In 2012 that opportunity came about when Richard Tongue ordered three book covers from me.
He sent me the books, I read them and really enjoyed them. I remember I put together the roughs for Richard and we just couldn’t finish them fast enough. I knew then that something major was happening in my journey.
Since then Richard and I have worked together on multiple covers (more than 25 if I remember correctly) and Richard recently told me,
” You’ve done some wonderful covers for me over the years, and I always look forward to each one. Often they are some of my biggest inspirations when it comes to writing the book; it’s always great to have that in front of me, urging me on.” when he ordered this:
It is extraordinary to hear such words directed at me when I could say exactly the same thing about about Richard’s and Jim’s work. Also It would be remiss not to say that thanks to the work I’ve done for Richard I’ve also been commissioned to work on many other projects in a similar vein.
Another major influence on my outlook was the magazine OMNI and they just ran a fantastic interview with Jim that I heartily recommend you go read. It’s right here: https://omni.media/jim-burns-interview
I think all that is left to say is a big thank you to Jim for being such an inspiration to me and thank you to Richard for allowing me to put that inspiration into action
You can visit Jim’s website here:
and Richards here:
UPDATE: Jim’s reply on facebook:
As ever he is humble, and wouldn’t we all love to hear that speech. I’ve asked him if it’s around and I’ll let you know what he says.
Bellow in the comments is Richards Response and I have to say I am humbled.
I think I’m going to try and do more posts like this about creators and their influence and if possible I’ll try and get some interviews.
So when I get the chance to produce work in the genre of Sword and Sorcery Fantasy Art I jump at the opportunity.
Now I don’t want to just copy the style of Frank, no, I want to pay homage by creating a piece of work that is clearly inspired by him, while being essentially my work. And it also must sell the book it is painted for by reflecting the atmosphere, characters and excitement contained therein.
David A. Brogdon gave me that opportunity recently. I read the book and discussed the concepts with him and above is the result.
I don’t think I’ll ever be able to express my appreciation for the impact Frank has had on my life but this kind of work goes someway toward that.
The Book is now up for sale here: www.amazon.com/dp/B01AQNRG7U
Posters are here: