Book illustration for cover of The Gathering

Sneak peek at the illustration that will appear on John Phillip Backus’ new book The Gathering: After the Fall (book two in the series).

This is considerably more complex than what you’d normally expect on a book cover, however in its complexity it demands attention and thus should serve the author well in terms of pulling in reader’s interest.

Yes, it was complex to do, painting in all the little organic looking bits and pieces to create a surreal overall feel to the illustration. I find it fascinating how little of the human face can be painted while still give the essential human element to the picture. While little more than eyes, nose, mouth and chin appear, each character is readily identifiable with those in the book, and even a feel for their emotional state of mind and personality.

Sadly this web version (at 72 dpi) doesn’t give a complete feel for the complexity of the piece. Imagine four times as much detail and you’ll have an idea of what will appear on the cover.

Duncan Long is a freelance book cover illustrator for HarperCollins, PS Publishing, Pocket Books, Solomon Press, Fort Ross, and many other publishers and self-publishing authors. See his cover illustrations at: