A grand redesign
Shrink wrapped Celebrated fantasy artist Charles Vess has condensed the epic mural from his last exhibition into printed form
Discover how Charles Vess took his 150-foot wall mural featuring numerous characters from faerie land, and turned it into a 108-page art book.
Veteran fantasy artist and illustrator Charles Vess has released an art book with a difference, inspired by his exhibition last year at Virginia’s William King Museum of Art.
“As part of the exhibition, I painted a 12x150ft narrative mural that ran around the gallery,” Charles says. “I also displayed selections of poetry alongside each piece. The response to that combination of art and text was phenomenal, so I decided to pursue more of the same, only in book form.”
So Charles has reconfigured the mural to fit the pages of the 108-page book, entitled Walking Through the Landscape of Faerie. “This dramatic transformation in size necessitated numerous aesthetic changes to the narrative," the illustrator says, “but I’m very happy with the result.” The book features poetic contributions from Neil Gaiman, Ursula Le Guin, Charles de Lint, Susan Cooper, Robin Williamson and others.
Next up for Charles is illustrating all six of Ursula Le Guin’s Earthsea books, collected together for the very first time, for release in 2018. “I’m in direct consultation with the author, trying to crawl inside her brain and see that world through her eyes,” he says. “A daunting task to be sure.”
You can order Charles’ book, which costs £28, from
The book features encounters with blind beggars, giants, witches and dragons.
Charles and his original mural: “Now anyone who was unable to travel to Virginia can experience my story.”
Charles says that publishers Faerie Magazine “has lavished a large amount of attention” on his book.
The Corn King sacrifices himself to ensure a good harvest in the coming year.