Starchild is a space epic. It’s a story for people who grew up with Star Wars but who wanted Star Wars to grow up too. And I want you to design the cover!

I have a logo (under construction). I just need you to deliver a cover illustration. (But make sure to keep the typography in mind as you go.)

The first book shows the heroine on the cover: Kalhette Whitesun. She’s beautiful. And she recently got her head shaved (not for fun).

Her outfit is sci-fi and sexy, but not too sexy for kids.

Oh, and her eyes
are glowing.

Plus she’s holding a fiery
laser sword. This should be a light-source in your illustration.

The blade should have
these colors.

But it should have this shape.

The pose should be EPIC!

The lighting must be DRAMATIC!

(DON’T do dull space gray.)

Make room for a title!

The deliverable is a full-bleed Photoshop (CS6) PSD.

It needs to be 300 dpi.

Make sure to include a 0.25” bleed around the entire design.

13.5”

6”

9”

1.5”

The back doesn’t need serious artwork, but the backdrop must fill this space with at least some texture.

PLOT

Kalhette (the woman you're illustrating) has special telekinetic powers. It's called being a "radiance." Radiances are deemed dangerous by the leaders of Pangalactic government. They're hunted, kidnapped, and imprisoned, which happens to Kalh in the beginning. With the help of her friends and a pilot named Starchild, she escapes. And then her group of friends goes to her homeplanet of Solace to start a rebellion, to throw off the tyrannical government, to keep them from treating radiances this way.

SETTING

Solace, Kalhette's home planet, where the revolution takes place, is a planet that's tidally locked. That means it's not spinning. So you don't get night and day. One side of the planet is always light, the other always dark. People live on the "twilight band," right between the two halves, because that's the best climate. So it's like living in a CONSTANT SUNSET. This could be a cool backdrop for your artwork. The twilight is a key feature.

Also, Solace, on the twilight band, is very green and lucious. Plant life really thrives. (I was partly inspired by the VIVID JUNGLE in the recent movie Annihilation starring Natalie Portman.) It's green and watery with vivid colors of flowers.

One of Kalh's climactic moments happens outside of a building called THE ATHENAEUM. It's a massive library that's shaped like an arrowhead (a triangle) pointing toward the sky. That could be a little detail that's dropped in the background. (Not at all required though.) There could also be spaceships in the sky. (Also optional.) If you've ever played the RTS game Starcraft 2, it would be like being in the midst of a battle with the Terrans.

But it’s okay if you want to do something more abstract with sky and stars in the background. For the illustration, I am much more concerned with character than setting.

These are some compositions I really love.

Right now, I’m hiring you to design the first book. But I’d love it if you also sent me thumbnail sketches for the two sequels. (Because I want to hire you to do them later.)

These 3 covers must use a matching set of COLORS, so they look good together on a bookshelf.

Book 2 has a 6-legged alien on the front. He wears leather armor. He also has a laser sword and glowing eyes.

(This is my sketch.)

Try to follow this ANATOMY as much as possible.

His HANDS are shaped like this.

His FEET are shaped like this (although not so cartooney).

Liink's FACE is noble, strong, and cool in shape. So cool that a six-year-old might pick him as his favorite character. (That means he can’t be repulsive.)

The work you did on the last version changed a lot from start to finish. So maybe this isn’t bad for a first draft.

He has eyes like a cat.

He has black fur like a panther.

He's wearing leather armor...

His chest is long because he has two sets of arms, and so his legs need to be extra long as well in order to keep his proportions somewhat human-like.

His pose should be standing up, holding a laser sword. He could even hold it with all four hands (if that looks natural).

I also like this low, prowling pose. It makes his extra hands seem more useful.

Here's some four-armed concept art for inspiration, but these are too stationary. Liink should be moving, an action pose, kinetic!

It would be awesome to show him in the center, surrounded by his shadowy enemies.

The SETTING is a dark technological underground. There are wires and machinery, but it's organic looking, like a forest.

Book 3 has an older bald man, with a tattoo that comes out of the socket left by his MISSING EYE. He also has a laser sword and his one eye glows.

The deadline is

22 April 2019

If you’re the illustrator for the job, let me know:

me@jwashburn.com

Akira X3 on 99Designs said he could 3Deeify the typography for me. He’s got some stellar stuff. And since I already have a logo vector, he said he’d charge $300 (instead of $600). Search Gmail for our conversation.

Starchild Book Cover Illustration Requirements Slides - Google Slides