I am still trying to scratch the surface of the behemoth that is Expression Design 4, but one day at a time I am getting closer to it. Today, inspired by one of the paintings I created with Artrage a few years ago, I invented a title, added several textures to match the mood of the title, then worked with 8 layers to manage text and image. A professional would have found an easier way to achieve the same result, without drowning under a sea of layers. Because of the typeface I used, this cover doesn’t work well when scaled to thumbnail size, but I like its overall feeling. The image conveys a sense of playfulness with just a hint of dark memories lurking under the title. At least, that is what I wished to achieve with this project. And now, I want to write this story.
This peacefully blue, albeit nonsensical piece will be the last one for a while. Nanowrimo is just around the corner, I’m still working with my editor on Prince of War, and I should also be finishing the drawings for the kids book. Between writing, editing, and hopefully drawing nothing else will be accomplished. Meanwhile, Nero managed to jump on the kitchen counter and ate the dental treats we put in a plastic bag… Have a great Monday, everybody.
Sidetracked by life, I started on my Monday drawing later than usual. Rainy season is finally here and with a vengeance, but as usual, although I often look outside my windows, I rarely see what lies beyond the glass panel.
Lightness is my word of the day. The state of being when you feel everything is possible, because there is nothing anchoring you down. For you, A. E.
Dente di Leone
The following drawing is a good example of what happens to people who try to stick to a gluten-free and dairy-free diet, they dream of cappuccino and pastries.
At the beginning of the summer, I had the great pleasure to meet a fellow author on the twitverse, Julia Hughes. Julia was running a promotion for her novel A Ripple in Time and I was immediately intrigued by its blurb: “After one hundred years, the Titanic has a new love story.” Julia and I started tweeting, also thanks to a common friend, Randall Peterson who was promoting her book and mine. A friendship was born out of 140 characters at a time. Later, Julia saw my drawings and asked me if I wanted to work on the new cover for A Ripple in Time, which meanwhile had had more than twenty thousand downloads in mere five days. I was flattered that my naïf art had caught Julia’s attention. Her proposal arrived at an odd moment for me, I was leaving to go back to Italy for a long stay due to family reasons. My mind was stretched in several directions at once, but Julia assured me she was in no hurry. Nevertheless, I don’t like to have people waiting on me when I accept to work on a project, and so once Julia told me what she wanted on the cover, I started playing with my tablet. One of her requirements was that the cover must have dandelion flowers and seeds. I had never drawn a dandelion flower before and I scouted the web for good images I could use as reference. It turns out, I love drawing dandelions and dandelions seeds. Below are my first and second mock covers and the banner.
Once the backdrop was done, I asked my cover artist and dear friend, Alessandro Fiorini to come onboard. I gave him the specifics of what Julia wanted on the cover: a sundial, a winged figure, and of course the Titanic.
Alessandro told me he was going to give it a try and contacted me a few hours later with this:
I thought it was a solid work and sent the image to Julia. Once we received the okay from her, Alessandro and I started working on the details. Despite a particularly hot Italian summer, internet failures, and life in general, a few weeks later we were able to send Julia the final cover. Below is one of the final tries and the banner.
Working with Alessandro is always a treat and Julia is one fabulous patron of the arts and it was an absolute pleasure to create a cover for her imaginative novel.
I was exposed to the ‘double rainbow’ video earlier in the morning and something must have charged my synapses. Not my cleanest painting and I did a mess with the layers. Nevertheless, here it is.
Una Finestra Per Sognare