Sunday, June 27, 2010

Episode 3: Judging A Book By Its Cover (Works)

*Click on the works to view larger versions*

Artist: Timothy Forry
Twitter: N/A
" Medium: Pastel and digital type."

Artist: Rhonda Rubin
Twitter: The_Rhonda
"I selected H.G. Wells' classic science fiction novel, "War of the Worlds" for two reasons. First, I've read it. Second, have you ever tried to draw a stick figure whale? Not easy. They come out looking like airplanes. I chose to create a literal interpretation of the book, because of the novel's campy adaptations on radio and in film and TV, plus the stick figurey aspect of the martians' war machines. Also? It's fun drawing stick figures being hit with death rays. My submission was created on sketch paper using pencil, pen and ink, and colored pencils."

Artist: Micki Brown
Twitter: N/A, but she food blogs HERE
"I created art for the book The Scarlet Letter. I tried to portray the tension that exists in a reductive community which is held together with suspicion, gossip, and rumors. Everyone has dark corners and secrets in their private lives; finding fulfillment in a society where one is under constant attack by external forces is nearly impossible."

Artist: Susannah Perry
Twitter: PaintingChef
"The Secret Garden was one of my favorite books when I was little. I always had this image in my head of the garden gate being iron and covered in ivy, although I think that in the book it is very clearly described as tall and wooden. When I was about 13, my mother and I saw the Broadway adaptation of the book and they used a revolving stage in the production. It was the first time I'd seen a revolving stage used (I didn't see Le Mis until later that year) and I was fascinated. I wanted to incorporate the three things that I've always associated with this story, the iron gate, the ivy and the rotating stage. This is acrylic paint and ink on canvas. And I have to confess to adding the lettering in Photoshop. The humidity in terrible in Tennessee right now and I just couldn't get the canvas dry enough to do the lettering by hand. Although I do think that if you look close enough, you might be able to see some of the pencil lettering through the paint. My plan for the lettering (and I will still do this once the thirty-seven pounds of paint finally dries) was to make the letters resemble the spikes and finials of the iron gates that apparently exist only in my mind..."

Artist: Becky Cochrane
Twitter: BeckyCochrane
"I was happy to see this title on the list because I recently read the novel for the first time and loved it. Other covers for MOBY DICK show the tortured Ahab, the white whale, or perhaps both locked in battle. But to me, the power of the novel lies in its unfathomable depths: the ocean that conceals Moby Dick and the darkness that lies within Ahab. The perspective I used for this painting is the narrator Ishmael's as he stares down into the water and has a fleeting glimpse of what may be the elusive whale."

*Click boombox to play*
Artist/Composer: Josh Newton
Twitter: Marquis66
"I had a lot of problems with this week, but I finally settled on Treasure Island. I tried to capture a couple of different feelings - the openness of the sea, the prevailing sense of adventure, and then that slight feeling of dread (you can hear it at the very end in particular, in the quotes of Blow the Man Down). Hope you enjoy!"

Artist: Sean Kramer
Twitter: N/A
"Materials: Photographs, paper, pencil colors

I wanted to use one of my art strengths for this challenge, which
would be photography. Then I had to think. Since I didn't have any
pictures of children in period clothing, I decided to draw some of my
own. I figured that would give the cover a little more playful and
childlike feature."

Artist: Lindsey Smolensky
Twitter: Smoness
"Materials: acrylic paint and ink over a photograph"

Artist: Brad Dumm
Twitter: N/A
"Bright colors and a good simple graphic - easy to see and eye catching; Conveying an essential part of the story but doesn't give anything away. When looking at a table of 25 book purchase options, which one will jump out at the buyer? That was my goal."

Artist: Jennifer Mathis
Twitter: JenXer


  1. I love love love the Scarlet Letter, I'm so happy that someone chose to do that one ... all well done. Want to see the rest

  2. I just love these! I think that Moby Dick is my favorite so far although I really love how Sean did The Secret Garden with the drawings and the photograph. I love the two together.

    Great job everyone!!!

  3. Once again, I'm thrilled by the submissions. I like seeing two different perspectives of THE SECRET GARDEN. Every one of these covers delights my literary soul and conveys so much story to me.

    Josh, your composition expresses exactly what you say--and would be great for parts of MOBY DICK, too.

  4. Yeah... I agree with everyone so far. And Josh, DUDE, you're outdoing yourself every week.

    I'm still waiting on a few-ish submissions, but damn, I'm beyond impressed so far.

  5. Hah, Seriously? Thanks guys, I thought that this was the weaker of the three so far :-S

  6. @Micki WHOA! That is seriously cool, I really like the way that came out.

  7. Yeah, Micki, it's totally blowing my mind.

  8. Micki rocks! and her typesetting is beautiful on top of her great concepts

  9. Thanks guys. You are extremely generous!

    I have to give credit where credit is due, my kids made the paper boxes. It was a gruelling origami lesson, but we succeeded in making nine beauties for the final sculpture.

    Personally, I am keen on Becky's Moby Dick cover visually. Although each week, I am totally psyched to see and experience all of the artwork. It's very inspiring.

    Congrats to everyone!

  10. I'm really super impressed with everyone's work. I would totally pick these off the shelf based on the covers.

  11. I really am loving these! I love all of them! I love the Scarlet Letter, although if I saw any of The Secret Gardens I would buy them. I also like Becky's because it has a 60's feel to it ... and that is GROOVY. And Rhonda, LOVED IT!

    Everyone's entry is wonderful, and I certainly can't say that about the entrys on the show... this was such a great idea, I look forward to these more then the show...

  12. Micki, Suzannah and Becky's look like could be on the shelf selling books right now...absolutely amazing the amount of talent that was shown this week be everyone! On we move to "SHOCK ART" where things will really get crazy...

    What did I learn this week? In photographing book covers you need to use a wide angle lens so you can fit more into the photo and still leave enough blank space for a title and author's name. Color value (or pigment) is really important when choosing a lettering to compliment the background. If the values are too close you can't see the letters...and, from the tv show, bright colors will sell books better.

  13. I have to say that I am amazed. Everyone has done some amazing work. These challenges keep making me get out of my box. Something I'm not used to, but it's a good thing.
    Keep up the great work.

  14. What? No Lord of the Rings? I'm soooooo disappointed.

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  16. Loved all the art. And Rhonda...I totally knew that was your by the book title instead of the content.