November 29, 2006 Bonus Blog
We went down to Barnes & Noble at Desert Ridge for a cover seminar road trip. Met Dan Harshberger, Abby Pearson, Meghan Saar and Robert Ray there, along with Trish and Bob Brink. We looked at all the new covers. So many new titles (Women & Cancer magazine!) and then retired to Rock Bottom to have lunch and decipher it all. A very creative crowd although they have a tendency to get a tad negative (they ride down together and get all worked up), but I kept them on task as much as I could (it really is lke herding cats with creative people, plus they ride back to the office together and undo all I had tried to instill). I still think we got some good direction and I feel confident we will have a couple new looks for 2007. We don't want to get fancy, just keep tweaking our brand so we don't look stale.
My good friend Tom Carpenter commented on my recent sketches and said he admires my "Highway 93 phase." Ha. Kind of true. Here's a couple of the reference shots I took last Friday night while we were stuck on the Arizona side of the dam. That igneous rock is so dramatic and potent looking. Notice the light, creamy patterns that set off the darker browns:
And here's two more, the second one is down on the flats near White Hills. If that name sounds familiar it's because that's where the photo was taken for the To The Point (editorial) in the Resource Book which just went out to subscribers. I also ran the photo here on the blog and it's the one where the Harsh and I are all cowboyed up with toy Winchesters standing on the porch of an abandoned building in the ghost town of White Hills, circa 1959. Well, the second photo, below, looks straight out at the former site of the town.
So I came home Sunday and bailed into a rejection pile board and inspired by all the ancient lava flows, I came up with this:
I need to put in a horse and rider, picking their way through the lava beds, while a lonely campfire wafts up from that creekbed below. And wait until you see who is in that camp! Here's some horse sketches for that scene which I did last night:
Robert Ray and I whipped out a Classic Gunfight page for the next issue of the SASS Chronicle. Worked on that all afternoon. Trish, Joel, Sue and Bethany are off to Vegas in the morning for Cowboy Christmas. We've got a booth there and it's always a huge deal up there.
"Time cools all fires."
—Old Vaquero Saying
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