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Monday, October 26

Halloween Madness: The Interior Art for the In the Time of the Dead Trilogy



The Interior Art for the In the Time of the Dead Trilogy

By David Monette


Greetings! I’m the author and illustrator for the “In the Time of the Dead Trilogy.” What holding these titles means is that I not only had the chance to write the books, but I was also able to do the covers and the interior artwork for them. For someone like me, a person who has always loved everything about books, it was kind of a dream come true. So what I’d like to do in this guest post is to show you the three different styles I used to do the interior work that is sprinkled through each of the books.

We’ll start with the first book in the series, “The Zombie Axiom.”


For all the books, I completed the illustrations digitally, using Photoshop. But as you can see in this book, I tried doing a bit of a pen and ink, crosshatching technique, where the darker values are built up with lines drawn upon lines. Like this:


And this:


Now, I really like working with this technique, and I was very satisfied with the finished pieces. However, for the next book I was interested in a look that wasn’t so hard-edged. I wanted something a bit more rough and dirty-feeling. This brings me to the images in the second book in the series, “The Warring Dead.”


Here, I discarded the pen and ink style and used a pencil technique for the shading as shown in the image below:


And this:


Again, I was really happy with the outcome. I had cool, rough and ready finished illustrations that were just gritty enough for the subject matter. The only problem was that they took forever to finish.

Naturally, then, this brings me to the final book in the series, “The Eternal Undead.”


In this book, you’ll find images that were done with an airbrush technique. They are a lot darker, with more heavy areas of black. Like this:

And this:


This technique was a lot of fun. I really liked the brooding quality many of the images have, and I felt they were the perfect complement to the ending of a series. Well, make that the perfect complement to the ending of this series. You’ll have to read it to find out why!


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About the Author: 

David Monette was born and raised in the cold rural hinterlands of upstate New York. As a typical kid in a typical community, life for him was pretty... typical. He liked to draw creatures and contraptions but as the second born of four sons, such ability was merely a convenient way of standing out from the crowd. As he inexpertly stumbled through high school, his talent for capturing the images in his head onto paper was noticed and encouraged by both teachers and family members.

Without any other idea of what to do with himself after graduation, besides a vague idea of doing something art oriented, he decided to attend Mohawk Valley Community College where he received his associate's degree in Advertising Design and Production. Acting on excellent advice from his teachers at this institution, he went on to Syracuse University where he learned a great deal about art and eventually wound up with a bachelor's degree in Illustration.

With a disturbingly large amount of student debt and a decent portfolio, he learned what it was to be a starving artist. Namely, he found that artists don't starve; they simply pick up an endless series of part time work to pay the rent while continuing to plug away at their true passion. This was essentially what he did until he received his first illustration job and from that point on, he didn't look back. As an illustrator, his highly detailed fantasy and science fiction work has appeared in many books, magazines, board games, and collectible card games for such varied publishers as Dell Publishing, Wizards of the Coast, and Atlas Games. Initially, he had completed these diverse projects utilizing oil and acrylic paints as well as pen and inks.

As digital technology continued to improve, however, he decided it was time to tackle the arduous task of mastering the computer and eventually figured out a way to adapt his style to a digital format. With this knowledge and experience, he went back to school and received his master's degree in Illustration from the University of Hartford. While there, his instructors reviewed his written work and had strongly suggested that he combine his writing ability with his talent as an illustrator to chart his own path.

And hence, an author was born.

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