Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Above The Timberline Case Cover

--Greg Manchess

Just when I thought I was completely finished with all the Above The Timberline paintings, I remembered one more that had to get done.

This is a closeup of part of the case cover, the painting that goes on the hardback of the book itself. It’s printed and mounted directly to the book boards. You’ve seen this done a lot for children’s books. If a child tears the jacket off, the same image is still on the book. (You'll get to see the full piece on publication. Grin.)

These are two of a bunch of very loose sketches of ideas for the piece which will wrap around the cover, spine and all. I was open to doing many different approaches, from montage to single image. I’m a fan of still life because of the way it freezes a scene, yet projects activity into the objects, like an after-image of who might’ve held or used the items. So I drew one up and when I showed the idea to my editor, he responded positively right away.

It's about Wes’ stuff, some of the equipment he carries with him on his search. It tells a lot about his character right upfront. A combination of oddball gear, from journal and oxygen mask to chronosextant and snowknife. The sort of things you need when traveling across the Phantom Waste in 3518.

You see, he was taught how to use this equipment while in the Air Service, during airship duty, in a time when they’re rediscovering old technology and the planet is covered in endless snow from pole to pole and…

…well, you’ll get to know all that when the novel comes out this October!


  1. Sweet.Will it be exclusively hard cover or will it be available in softcover?

  2. Good question, Sam. They haven't told me anything about a softcover. I suspect if it sells well it may go to softcover. But for now, everyone is only thinking about hardcover.

  3. I'm so excited to see this book. I buy a lot of art books, Spectrum annuals, graphic novels, and children's books but I don't feel like I've seen a book like this since the Dinotopia series. I've also been following along with the posts of it here on Muddy Colors and have seen a small sliver of how big a venture this is even for a talented, professional artist like yourself and am in total awe of your courage and commitment. Great job Greg!

  4. Thanks, Sean. Means a lot to know that people are watching! Eight months to go before launch....

  5. So pumped for this book! Thanks for all the progress posts!

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  7. You had me at hello! Can't wait to pick up a copy of your novel!! Especially enjoyed reading all the behind the scenes in process posts: completely inspirational!

  8. Thanks, Mary and Ben! Appreciate that! Will have more news about the novel soon!


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