Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Mixing it up with Willsin Rowe and his bad ass covers...

I wanted to mix things up a little. I have authors on spotlighting their work all the time. And the other day I said to myself, "Self, you should have a cover artist on. And lucky for you, self, you have the best cover artist." And I do! And here he is! I've had the pleasure to work with Willsin Rowe as a writer AND as a cover artist. He's definitely got a lot going on and manages to handle it all brilliantly. Now let's look at some pulse-quickening covers and my probing questions...

*probe probe probe*

If you could create ANY cover what would it be? No holds barred. No client like me saying: “You know I really like minimal…”
There really isn’t any one kind I’d most like to create. Mainly I’d love for people to see one (or more) of my covers and feel compelled to investigate that book. Whether that be through crisp simplicity or through magnificent detail...either way is fine by me.

What’s your favorite font? There are only a trillion of them, right? So choose one. ONE.
Gah! Yer killin’ me here! Actually, I think Goudy Old Style would be my favourite, if push came to shove. It looks good in a formal setting, but also can work as body text. It’s kinda like the Miss America of fonts! For reference, it’s the font I used as the title on this little number I co-wrote with Katie Salidas.

What’s the weirdest request you’ve ever received?
This is not quite what you mean, I suppose, but I did receive some private messages on Yahoo at one point. A saucy young man who took a shine to a cover I’d made, and thought perhaps “Willsin Rowe” was the model on the front of it (a gorgeous blonde wearing almost nothing except handcuffs and a gag). When I pointed out that I was definitely NOT that girl, due to me being a dude, he wanted to know if I took the photos myself. Nope. Stock shots. “Oh...got any you can send me?”

Do you find it harder to do your own covers? If so, why?
Absolutely I do. Essentially it comes down to having too much information. Not just about the physicality of the characters, but the events of the stories as well. When a client requests a cover, they usually boil the story down for me into the most important chunks. I have my whole story moonwalking through my mind as I search for models.

What’s your darkest cover?
Probably one of the first I ever made. “Pitfalls of Desire: Winston” by Jennifer Campbell. A tale of forced feminization and punishment.

Your most whimsical?
It’d be hard to go past Selena Kitt’s “Tickled Pink” for that one. Mmm...underwear...

The most bad ass?
I think Jason Halstead’s “Devil’s Icebox” would be a tough one to beat in the realm of bad-assery.

Who’s your favorite client? Oh that’s not a fair question. We know it’s me. Next question! ;)
Wait, I—

How did you get into covers in the first place?
But I want to answer that previous—

No you don’t. How did you get into covers in the first place?
It was almost by default, really. My main publisher, Excessica, put around an email asking if any authors had the skills to work on covers. At that point (2009) I’d been working professionally with Photoshop and Illustrator for 15 years, so I tentatively offered my services. It seemed I had a little bit of what it took, because I’m still doing it now, nearly 5 years later!

Any big projects/plans coming up?
I have stories coming out soon in a couple of anthologies, for which I’m also making cover art. Those will be (or already are!) 3D boxed set covers too. I’ve been pushing the boundaries of 3D covers lately, as well. Things like this, and this, for instance...

Thanks for visiting with us, Willsin and showing us some of your amazing covers! If you look, dear reader, in the sidebar you will see some of my covers done by Willsin. Gritty, Wanderlust, The Accidental Cougar, Crossroads, etc, etc, etc. 



  1. Well, if I ever get my book finally finished and am lucky enough to have it published, I hope I get Willsin as my cover artist. You're brilliant darling - brilliant! (and I just finished my design class in my publishing course so I know what I'm talking about).

  2. Thank you very much, Miz Angell! Best of luck with the book.

    And thanks to the lovely Awesommer for having me here. It's always a pleasure!


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