Remember the sketches I worked on a while back for the Flannery O'Connor short story "A Circle in the Fire"? I've been meaning to post the final illustration for a while, but this semester has been keeping me so busy ever since it started.

The client thought the black and white sketches could actually work as the final, but there was also talk of taking two of them to a color final treatment. Since I was curious to see how the sketches would look in color anyway, I offered to finalize whichever ones they wanted in color with the option to use the black and white sketches as the final if they were  preferred in the end.

The two sketches were decided upon, and these are my color versions below:

I think they are a nice experiment for me in terms of trying to work with a little closer to my sketchbook work (more limited color palette, leaving things a little bit looser and more atmospheric) but I don't think that they are 100% there yet. I have this idea that I have in my head of how I'd like to be working, but just can't quite get on paper yet. The client was very positive about the two finals, but decided to go with black and white original sketches as the final, which I am completely fine with since I think I prefer them a bit more myself.

The good news is that this one assignment has been approved to continue for a whole book of Flannery O'Connor short stories! I'll get to work on 11-12 black and white interior illustrations and a cover design through the end of the year, which I am very excited about. Unfortunately, I won't post any of the other illustrations until the book is published and complete, but I'll try to keep posting other work in the meantime.

I do want to keep working on this idea of looser, limited color personal pieces on my own time to try to achieve this look that I have in my head. Maybe I'll get it, maybe I won't, but I've got to keep trying or it will continue to bug me.

I might try to post some of the inspiration photos I looked at while working on this series of illustrations, since I think they're pretty interesting.

"A Circle in the Fire" Final Illustrations

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