The Making of a Book Cover Illustration
Launching my YouTube Channel
I’ve launched my YouTube channel with a new video. It’s a look at the illustration I created in Blender and Affinity Photo for my story The Murders in the Reed Moore Library. I’ve studied 2D/3D illustration, digital art, in Blender particularly, for several years now. I wanted to create original artwork for my book covers. This first video on the channel is a quick tour of the cover in Blender—I didn’t record a process video for this one.
2023 Plans on YouTube
I needed to get this video done—instead of just thinking about it. I knew going into it that I’d make mistakes and learn. That’s great. I can do it better next time. It still took longer than I’d expected to edit the footage, record the audio, create the description and other metadata. Writing captions was eye-opening (write a script next time). I want to learn much more about doing this well. It’s interesting and fun. I just need to figure out how to fit it in with everything else.
I’m not releasing weekly videos or anything crazy like that. I did start recording my process working on a new cover illustration. I’ll continue to do that so I can create videos of my process. At this point, I’m thinking I’ll release a new video (coinciding with a new cover illustration) each month. Hopefully these turn out interesting and entertaining for everyone!
Additionally, I expect I’ll do other videos around characters and settings in my books and stories. I have a series of books I’d like to release, but I’d always planned to create individual chapter illustrations, so that’s going to take time! I’ll likely put up those videos as I progress with the series.
Other 2023 Plans
Writing, of course, remains central to my plans this year. I’ve made some progress this month and expect to do more in the time remaining. I shared an update reviewing the first week last time.
I’ve planned to do a monthly review this year, so I’ll share insights from that review each month. I’ll talk about where I failed, missed, fell down—and what I’m doing to pick myself up and continue.
I have many new titles to release this year, so I’m planning to succeed, while realizing that sometimes other things (such as health issues) get in the way.
Booktalk: What I’m Reading
I finished 2022 having read 104 titles, having set my usual goal of 80 books for the year, so I was pretty happy about that outcome. I never have a shortage of books I’m reading!
In audio, I’m currently listening to Existence by David Brin. Sorry, it’s Audible-only (which I don’t like).
It’s a big, complicated novel following several main characters. The trigger event is the discover of an alien artifact in orbit. The book deals with the questions of the Fermi Paradox, the Great Filter, our near-term future, our social structures, and much, much more. I’d recently read the first Uplift trilogy by David Brin. This isn’t part of that universe, but it does have some thematic and other connections.
In e-book format, I have a few books I’m reading, but most of my attention right now is on The 1619 Project by Nikole Hannah-Jones.
I remember being an undergraduate at The Evergreen State College, doing an independent study with Rudy Martin in African-American history and fiction (I was so fortunate to work with Rudy, he retired four years after I graduated, and sadly passed away in 2016). It was an area I knew was lacking in my education—and I didn’t know how much! I’ve lived in predominately white, West coast communities, that didn’t ever say much of anything regarding the history and writings of people who were not white (or male, for the most part). I would have put this book on my reading list if it had existed back then. Highly recommended!
In print, I’m reading, The House in the Cerulean Sea by TJ Klune.
Linus Baker is sent by the Department In Charge Of Magical Youth (DICOMY) to evaluate an unusual orphanage with children considered to be more of a threat than any he has encountered before in his dull, follow-the-rules, life. It’s a delightful book, one that I’m thoroughly enjoying.
That’s it for this issue of READINARY. Wrap yourself in a warm afghan with a favorite beverage and a good book in your preferred format, and enjoy yourself. You’ve earned it. If you’re interested in supporting my work, you can become a paid READINARY subscriber, pick up copies of my books, purchase books I suggest (I earn a small affiliate commission, at no cost to you), watch my videos, or share this newsletter. If you want. No problem if you don’t. I’ll be back in a couple weeks with another issue.
Best wishes, always—Ryan