Here's how I go from a sketch-which you may have already seen-to a finished cover. The book was EARTHBLOOD by Keith Laumer. A very very cool classic SF book that could easily have been a movie. There was so much visual info! I wanted somehow to depict the earth "bleeding" as at one point it's attacked by aliens. So I made the ships, symbolically look like big ominous knives, one piercing the comfortable circular image of the earth. And a nebula in space looking like blood. I like giving space character. I did this in acrylics on board. Below is my original sketch that came to me in a coffee shop while doodling around. It's going to be a Baen trade paperback out later this year. A book really worth picking up. They just don't write 'em like this much anymore. This piece is 18x24 inches and the price(and this would really be in my "art for sale" blog) is $1300.
A note here. I've gotten AMAZINGLY busy, which is a good thing, but as such, the "painting of the day" will get really sporadic-once or twice a week if I can. Otherwise I'll be blogging and talking about art, life, etc. Feel free to comment. I'll be up and back to smaller works as we get into later May.