A couple of months ago, I was approached with the idea of creating a 70s style, Walking Dead variant cover featuring that lovable badass, Michonne.
I assume it was in response to Afrodisiac, the 70s style graphic novel that Brian Maruca and I created a couple years ago. You can see a preview of it and order a copy from Adhouse Books.
With the 1970s in mind, I created some sketches:
I think that second one looks a bit Jamie Hewlett-like. After some back and forth, we decided to go with the third idea - limited color, like old exploitation posters. So I created another round of sketches:
The one on the left is the one everyone chose - but, I couldn’t use the Walking Dead TV logo. Not a problem. I love lettering, especially old title lettering.
Next step - draw some final artwork. And because I struggle with confidence (not a bad thing according to this study), I decided to work up a few variations. Here are the drawings I created for the cover.
(this is the actual original, 19 x 24 inches, ink on bristol)
(this was an unused variation, 13 x 17 inches, ink on bristol)
(this was an unused variation, 19 x 24 inches, ink on bristol)
(I drew the zombies on a separate piece of paper)
Next step was assembling the parts and coloring in Photoshop. The final result is at the top of this post. It is based on a 3-color silkscreen concept. I considered silkscreening the image and then scanning the resulting print.
Below is the alternative, alternative cover. I submitted both, due to the high-profile nature of this job, personal relationship to those who hired me, and my own interest in the subject (this was a very enjoyable assignment), I wanted to make sure everyone was happy with the final result. I think they picked the right one!
Thanks for reading, hope you enjoy the Ghost Variant!
(cover recreation for a collector, 12 x 19 inches, ink and wash on bristol)