David D’Andrea really shouldn’t need any introduction. His style is immediately identifiable, and graces posters, CD covers and t-shirts for the likes of Sleepy Sun, Om, Boris, Agalloch, Swans, Witchcraft and Sleep. I’ve always been a great fan of his intricate, layered compositions and was over the moon when he agreed to work on a piece for The Great Dominions. As with Benjamin Vierling, David had an interest in the novel’s subject matter, so this was a bonus from the outset. David chose initially to depict an absolutely key character in the book – and I had a very clear idea about how that character should look.
The first cut was in many ways spot on. I loved the overall composition, and the way trees and ruins merged into the folds of the cloak (see final inked piece at the end of this post.) The face was problematic though and, to be honest, did not fit with my vision of the character.
Bizarrely though, with a few minor tweaks, I realised that David’s initial pencil drawing could be modified into the perfect illustration of a completely different, but equally important, character. So, rather than go back to the drawing board, we proceeded on this new tangent:
This altered depiction was exactly what I was looking for. No further tweaks were needed, so David worked the drawings up into an inked piece:
As always, the final full-colour version will be available when the book is released but, in the meantime, here’s a low-res image of the complete illustration: