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February 15, 2013
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Broken boy by Roguehill Broken boy by Roguehill
This is from a book cover illustration for Valancourt Books, who is reprinting a 1959 weird mystery novel called "Broken Boy" by John Blackburn. Broken Boy is a murder mystery that changes into a spy novel that changes into a weird mystery....just my cup of tea! The publisher wanted me to recreate something similar to the original cover seen here: [link]
I extensively redesigned the statue to make it seem more ominous, and the woman to seem more...um...real. Anyway, it wasn't a really simple piece to do, but I liked how it turned out.
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:iconjeshields:
jeshields Featured By Owner Feb 18, 2013  Professional Digital Artist
Well, the piece doesn't really feel as ominous as it could. The straight view robs part of the feel. I would force more of a worm's eye view on the piece where the viewer is placed beneath the ominous figure. Also, the facial expression of Broken Boy is too happy. He doesn't look like he might do me harm. Also, the tail(?) looks more phallic in nature. Other than these, still a great piece. Your rule of thirds is in place horizontally but is cutting it close vertically. A forced perspective would definitely help there as the figure would break those bounds when put into a worm's eye view. The smaller you can make the viewer, the more ominous the figure will feel.
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:iconroguehill:
Roguehill Featured By Owner Feb 19, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Thanks, Jes!
You're right about what you are saying. The straight-on shot is very flat and non-dramatic, but the publisher wanted something as close to the original cover (see the link in the description) as possible. Pretty tight constraints, but I did what I could. I can certainly see what you mean with the happy expression, which I think is coming mostly from the eyes. The "slits" that you see is actually the edge of the upper eyelid. I should have put some highlights on the lower lid at the very bottom edge of the eye to reinforce that. And....that's not a tail. :) It's a fertility statue, and indeed has a penis. I just made it vague because it is there in the original cover and will be covered with the title copy anyway. A worms-eye view would certainly have heightened the drama...I just didn't feel like I had that option. Maybe I could have spoken with the publisher about it.
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:iconjeshields:
jeshields Featured By Owner Feb 19, 2013  Professional Digital Artist
Yeah, that's the difficulty of restraints. As an freelance artist, I take the position that I am being hired as the duty expert for the art desired, so I never feel restrained from asking or making suggestions for a better representation for the client. If he/she chooses to refuse such, then it is ultimately their image they are paying for and I will work within that. I've seen plenty of your work to know you have at least a working knowledge of these suggestions, so your work is still aces in my book. :) Btw, be looking forward to seeing my latest piece. I think it will represent my absolute current best when complete... at least as far as character portraits go. If your a fan of the old He-Man action figures, you should like it. :)
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:iconroguehill:
Roguehill Featured By Owner Feb 19, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
That sounds awesome! I have a Space Ghost piece planned myself..must be something in the air..? Can't wait to see it!
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:iconjeshields:
jeshields Featured By Owner Feb 19, 2013  Professional Digital Artist
Check it out! [link]
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:iconjeshields:
jeshields Featured By Owner Feb 15, 2013  Professional Digital Artist
As always, beautifully rendered. Excellent artistry. Would you mind if I offer composition critique?
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:iconroguehill:
Roguehill Featured By Owner Feb 16, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Not at all, Jes. What were you thinking?
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