Just hang­ing…

ImagineFX - - Artist Insight Tangled Characters -

Make room for the ti­tle

It’s cru­cial to ac­count for the ti­tle of the book dur­ing the early stages of cover de­sign. The ti­tle is the most im­por­tant com­po­nent of a cover and so it’s wise to ei­ther leave enough space for it or de­sign the cover around it. In this case, I left the bot­tom of the com­po­si­tion free for the ti­tle, cred­its and other text el­e­ments that come from the pub­lisher.

Tak­ing aim…

In the story Stil­ian is an archer and so the bow and ar­row is a re­peat­ing visual through­out the comic. I thought it would be fit­ting to see the two main char­ac­ters rid­dled with ar­rows. Here, they have the ad­di­tional func­tion of guid­ing the viewer’s eye.

Directing the viewer

I used a split-com­ple­men­tary colour scheme here where the ter­tiary greens and browns make up 90 per cent of the im­age, while the sat­u­rated reds have the sole pur­pose of directing the viewer’s eye. In this case, they’re taken from Veina’s hair, fol­low a cir­cu­lar path along the ar­rows and the fall­ing ru­bies, and fi­nally to­wards the ti­tle at the bot­tom.

Push­ing the story

Small things can help to tell the story bet­ter and add lay­ers to the cover il­lus­tra­tion. Here, if we look at Stil­ian’s right hand, he seems to be grasp­ing a hand­ful of ru­bies and gold coins; if he lets go of them then he’d be able to free him­self. That is a rep­re­sen­ta­tion of Stil­ian’s char­ac­ter as a thief in the comic.

The power of flat darks

Flat blacks or darks help to ground an im­age. Ar­eas that are seem­ingly in­ac­tive, like a heavy chunk of black in a paint­ing, of­ten func­tion as neg­a­tive space or breath­ing space for a paint­ing. Th­ese can be used with great ef­fect to make the rest of the im­age look more ac­tive in com­par­i­son.

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