This work was for a comissioned cover and interior illustrations of a YA book called "The Tides of Glory
". A really interesting project for me because the story is about a young girl growing up on a water-world after humanity has fled Earth and thus requiring me to draw a lot of boats and ships!
The main character, Annie, is a young woman of mixed Afro-Caribbean and British ancestry, and getting her look right was an important part of the process. She needed to be young with a bit of a devil-may-care attitude, yet charismatic and friendly. The sea monster behind her is a Foy, one of the alien antagonists of this novel that later got dropped from the design.
After several rounds, the author expressed a preference to drop the Foy in favor of a ship from later in the series. The final cover painting was done in gouache on panel and sent to the author after it was finished. In working on this painting, I thought a lot about the now classic covers done by Eric Rohmann and Mary GrandPré, and particularly wanted to capture some of the latter's visible hand in the finished piece.
For the interior illustrations, the author wanted ships that would express the nautical theme. Quite a few of these got rejected for not being the right kind of boats!