Saturday, December 29, 2012

Book Cover for 'A Favorite Son'

The cover of my book, A Favorite Son, is based on a mixed media paining I painted not long ago. In it I floated various paints on the paper, letting them drizzle and mix, to create an intricate, fiery flow of color. Then when they dried out I came in with a black pen, and drew just a few lines to suggest the figure.

To me, this is what this image means: looking directly at yourself, facing the pain and the ugly imperfections within, without any attempt to mask who you are—even if you find yourself on the verge of a meltdown. Which is the process the protagonist, Yankle, is going through in this story. He finds himself coming to terms with his core being, with how the tension between his emotions and needs has driven him over a lifetime. 

As in my previous book cover designs, the font of the book title and the author name casts a subtle shadow over the image. However, One detail is different here: Two of the letters of the author name cast a shadow like all the other letters, but the two glyphs themselves—the objects that cast the shadows--are intentionally missing. Why? For two reasons.

First, because often in my art I discover that the
 eye is drawn to the unexpected, and the brain rises to the challenge when there is a missing link to resolve. The observer, then, becomes engaged with the art, and in a sense, becomes its creator. 

And second, because this missing detail is a symbol, an indication of the flawed character in this story.

★ Love literary fiction? Treat yourself to a gift 

"Her prose is beautiful; she paints intricate, emotionally resonant pictures with words"

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