After going back and forth a few times discussing options, the artist, Scott Christian Sava, sent me another sketch. This one included all four main characters. The art style is inspired by the pulp sci-fi magazine covers of the 50s and 60s and by artists such as Frank Frazetta, Michael Whelen, and Syd Mead. I approached Scott to work on my cover after he posted pictures of a series of watercolor paintings he was working on as practice in a new medium. I was just joking around and to my surprise, he showed interest and we started a dialog about the cover. At that point, I wasn’t even finished with the first draft of the manuscript!
In this picture, you can see Zack and Jenny from the previous picture. Jenny’s look has been updated. To Zack’s left is Mungus, an Ersidian Junior Ranger about a year older than Zack. Mungus underwent some developmental changes as well; I didn’t save all the interim steps. This picture was also my first look at the Valtraxian, Ix (behind Jenny). I describe Valtraxians as being a sort of cross between grasshoppers and praying mantises. These four characters are the main characters of Zack Jackson & the Cult of Athos and will be featured heavily in subsequent novels.
Ix is too big in this picture. We spoke briefly about what do to about that; my wife suggested he and Mungus switch places. I suggested maybe Ix could go on a rock behind the other three. The final solution was probably less work for Scott, but the results were excellent.
In the next picture, we get to see some of the background, but that’s another post. 🙂