From Concept to Creation by Brian Konutko

I want to thank Brian for giving us this look into his artistic process for creating such wonderful covers for our books.  He is currently hard at work on his third cover which will be unveiled in the next couple of weeks.  Keep an eye out for it…it is another great one!  You can find more of his work here:  Soul of Ko

I love working with Jeff because of the creative freedom that he gives me. “Tales of Terror” was the first illustration I got to do for Millhaven Press, I remember showing him a rough sketch and after having the go, I followed the instructions – “…make it shocking and horrifying…” well… I hope I succeeded.

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“Fierce Tales: Shadow Realms” Was a different approach. I got to choose the story I wanted to illustrate myself, so I picked “Hex Hollow” which got my attention right away.
My first thought after reading K.P. Kulski’s tale was to do a portrait of Nellie, the witch protagonist. But I changed my mind about it because I was afraid it would take away from the reader’s imagination, so I went with a river spirit instead.
I always start with a rough sketch, mainly for visualizing concept and composition and after looking at it for a couple of days I might decide to change it completely, or start coloring. Or both!
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The title design for this one was a big deal to me, I wanted it to feel regal. Like it was the cover of a medieval fantasy book, which is why it took me longer to do that than the rest of the illustration, both designing and finishing.
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I do hope I get to do a lot more of Millhaven’s covers. I enjoy diving into the stories and coming up with ideas of how to represent them as illustrations.

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