-By Dan dos Santos

Here’s a new cover of mine that was just released for a book entitled ‘A Beautiful Friendship’, by David Weber.

Yeah, I know… I’m obsessed with pink lately. Something about it is just so satisfying. It may not be obvious to my audience (since they often see my paintings in a different order than what I paint them in), but I sometimes get fixated on a certain color or compositional element, and will re-use the theme in multiple paintings back to back. Usually this is because I felt I wasn’t successful the first time, and so I take what I’ve learned and attempt to implement it better in the next painting. For instance, this painting came right after ‘Switchblade Goddess‘, which came right after ‘White Trash Zombie‘. If you look at them together, you can see the repetition of pink, as well as the stylized blossom branches. Eventually, I will get what I am trying to achieve, and move onto something else.

Currently I’m a bit obsessed with the color red. Given the nature of RGB monitors, it always looks so vibrant on my screen when I’m doing sketches. Capturing that same vibrancy in paint though is a lot harder! I’m on painting #2 now attempting to achieve the results I want. We’ll see how it goes. It’s looking like it may take me 3 attempts to get it right!

Anyways, back the painting at hand.


Given the title of the book, and the fact that it is targeted to young-adults (most likely girls), my original concepts were a lot more playful and gentle. They all focused on the relationship of the two characters. After a few rounds of sketches, the AD let me know that I was barking up the wrong tree, and that she wanted the image to be a lot tougher, with some danger and mystery to it. It took a few tries, but I think I finally got what we were going for.

Here are a few detail shots for you.