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Covers

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  • Covers

    We've all had a chance to see the covers. For those who haven't you can find images here: Elric: The Making of a Sorcerer [link expired] and they are magnificant. Mike has spoken a little on the covers and I was hoping the two of you could give us the details on what you set out to accomplish with the covers. I haven't seen the 4th cover yet, and was wondering if there is a surprise in store.
    Last edited by Reinart der Fuchs; 03-08-2010, 07:58 PM.
    The cat spread its wings and flew high into the air, hovering to keep pace with them as they moved cautiously toward the city. Then, as they climbed over the rubble of what had once been a gateway and began to make their way through piles of weed-grown masonry, the cat flew to the squat building with the yellow dome upon its roof. It flew twice around the dome and then came back to settle on Jhary's shoulder. - The King of the Swords

  • #2
    Cover Thoughts...

    I had several thoughts when I began to consider what I wanted to do with the covers for the Elric mini-series.

    The first was that I wanted a large single figure as the focus of the cover. Since we're telling tales about some of early developments at the beginning of Elric's story, a large drawing focused on him seemed appropriate.

    And, because the four issues--while containing more or less complete stories--all thread together to tell a longer tale, I thought the covers ought to be linked in somehow. The linkage is actually accomplished (I hope) in several ways.

    To begin with, the four issues take place over an extended period of 'time', dreamtime to be sure but time nevertheless based on the early history of Melnibonأ©. So the costumes change with the issues, beginning simply and becoming more baroque as they go along. This is especially true of the armor and that's reflected in the covers.

    I also thought it would be fun to link the covers together in terms of sequential action, a frequently used hallmark of comics. So the 'action' within the cover drawings acts as sort of 'flip book' of Elric raising his sword. Don't know how effective it would be to actually 'flip' the drawings--the originals are way too big. But I like having the idea unite the covers.

    And I used the logo to anchor the head so as to 'fasten' the character to the page in the same place on all four covers.

    I've also worked to suggest the history that Michael's developed for Elric over a number of years. One of the things about Michael's work I like is its malleability. 'Reality' has a certain fluid quality in the Multiverse. I read of Elric's fate in STORMBRINGER back when I was in college and then I got to draw another version of it in the MICHAEL MOORCOCK'S MULTIVERSE comic a few years back. Makes it tougher on continuity hounds but I rather love the idea of there being a high degree of difficulty in trying to pin things down to a single or 'right' version. Kind of reflects my own experience with real life. <g>

    So...to go back to the topic sentence of the previous paragraph...I've drawn Stormbringer differently in each comic. But not randomly. The proto-Stormbringer in Issue One is based on Michael's own sketch he sent me where the blade in that form really belongs on the end of a spear. Michael's the genesis of the character and it seemed appropriate his version begin the series.

    The second Stormbringer is based on two early paperback covers here in the States--that of Jack Gaughin (not sure if I'm spelling Jack's name there correctly) who did the covers for THE STEALER OF SOULS and STORMBRINGER from Lancer Books--as far as I know, the first American publication of the material. I combined Jack's version with that of Jeff Jones who did what looks like an ink and watercolor version that appeared on an Elric reprint a few years later.

    The third Stormbringer is based on the P.Craig Russell version, a central Elric illustrator in comics. Craig's sword has morphed a little over his various Elric adaptations but it's always been variations of a central design.

    And the fourth Stormbringer is my own design. If there had been more comics, I would have tossed in three or four other designs at least but four is all I could manage.

    But I felt the sword's shifting appearance rather reflected Michael's creation.

    That's all I can think of offhand about the covers. Oh, and I did want the light from the sword to be getting harsher as the series progressed, darkening the shadows and drawing more black into the pictures.

    Best/Walter

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    • #3
      I like the way Walter's taken up the themes of Earth, Water, Air and Fire, which are the themes of each independent story, and worked accordingly. The colourist has also done a great job in keeping the colours right for each element. Colour's very important to me in my novels. If you look at, say, The Skrayling Tree, you'll see that red, white and blue are the dominant colours there. The Dreamthief's Daughter drew on the colours of the German flag. The film, in my view, should show similar attention to detail. And that's what I love about Walter -- his attention to detail!

      Pre-order or Buy my latest titles in Europe:
      The Whispering Swarm: Book One of the Sanctuary of the White Friars - The Laughter of Carthage - Byzantium Endures - London Peculiar and Other Nonfiction
      Doctor Who: The Coming of the Terraphiles - Kizuna: Fiction for Japan - Modem Times 2.0 - The Sunday Books - The Sundered Worlds


      Pre-order or Buy my latest titles in the USA:
      The Laughter of Carthage - Byzantium Endures - London Peculiar and Other Nonfiction - The Sunday Books - Doctor Who: The Coming of the Terraphiles
      Kizuna: Fiction for Japan - The Sundered Worlds - The Winds of Limbo - Modem Times 2.0 - Elric: Swords and Roses

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