18 July 2012

The Lily and Andresh Project.

For my book, The Name and the Key.   

Since joining Deviant Art I've been actively searching out artists to commission work that features the two lead characters of my book, The Name and the Key.

I've named this mission The Lily and Andresh Project,  because I'd like this to be an ongoing partnership between myself and artists, where we help each other out and show off each others' work.

The first artist to do wonderful things to Lily and Andresh was Molly Carlson of MMC Illustrations. She's also on Deviant Art, under the username RyouGirl.

I commissioned a full-color, full-body, plain background of the characters, and she did a beautiful job with it:

I love all of it--she did so well with both characters, but I have to give a special shout-out to how well she did with Andresh's coat.

Now that I've got one commission out of the way, I've settled on another artist: Juhaihai. She is also doing a full-color, full-body composition with a blank background, but her art will be digital (although she's giving me a 300dpi copy so I may print it). This will probably take about two months or so, and I've given her a lot more information to work with along with a similar request I have to Molly: "Make it better, make it your own." And when I say I gave her a lot more to work with, I did. Maybe I went overboard...but I think (I hope) this gives her more freedom to do some original things with the characters--an interactive pose, or maybe even Andresh doing some magic.

I gave Juhaihai my own artwork as references, plus Molly's art, and then these new pieces I created for Deviant Art (shout out to Fox Orian for making this meme)!:

Image (cc) by KEB

Whenever I picture Lily, I picture a composite of these images, although the first three boxes on the left are the closest real-life images to her I could find.  All the other photos illustrate aspects of her appearance. The next two rows are how I see her if she was illustrated--they feature different artistic styles, East and West. In the penultimate row, there is a little box that focuses solely on the inspiration for Lily's scar--a broken mirror, a Lichtenburg figure, and Molly's drawing of the scar. The remaining boxes are full of costume influences for her character.

Image (cc) by KEB

Andresh's character sheet is of a similar vein to Lily's. Although it was harder finding people who could double as Andresh in real life. Like Lily's, the first three boxes on the left are the closest to real life I could find. The rest of the photos are kind of all over the place; they depict single features or aspects of his appearance, not necessarily the whole person. I think everyone on his sheet is famous enough for you to guess, except the last portrait photo. That is El Gitano--he is a Spanish gypsy, and was featured on the cover of the book by the same name. The Romani had to be represented on this chart somewhere, because Andresh is, in fact, Roma. The next rows feature anime/manga influences, but when you get to the second row of anime artwork, you see that things start to get a little more...supernatural. I've not kept this hidden--Andresh is possessed for a good chunk of the book. So the last three images are demon influences, and the last two rows are costume influences.

The last bit of information overload I provided was a special comic I sketched out: Flame and Shadow--a tale of Andresh's Magic. I was too lazy and time-strapped to ink and color the things, so it's just quickie pencil drawings, with words and panels created in Comic Book! In this little comic, I try to explain the principles of Andresh's magic in case an artist wants to mess with illustrating it. But it also helped me out immensely, because it helped me cinch some of the concepts I've been working with into his magic. Anyway, here's the comic (two pages), and I'm using pretty over-the-top Mythic Narration--forgive me. And you'll have to click the pics to enlarge them--text is a little small as is. Sorry about that!




Every time I note an artist with a commission request, I now have plenty of info to give to them as references!

I'm excited to see what everyone comes up with, and of course I'll keep you posted on the status of the artwork, as well as any other new character commissions. 

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