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Cover Creator: Anthony Lucas

How often do you get a cover created by an Oscar- and BAFTA- nominated film director? Anthony Lucas gained the Oscar nomination for The Mysterious Geographic Explorations of Jasper Morello, which is just brilliant. I couldn't believe it when I heard he was willing to do a cover for Worldshaker! And he followed it up with an even more stunning cover for Liberator!

 

So let me introduce Anthony Lucas:

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ANTHONY'S MOVIES
His first successes were with Slim Pickings and Holding Your Breath. His most recent success has been My Rabit Hoppy (not a typo!), a short movie that won an award at the 2008 Palm Springs International Shortfest and was on the list of 9 contenders for the short film Palme d’Or at the Cannes Film Festival.

Here’s a still from Holding Your Breath -

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The Oscar and BAFTA nominations were for The Mysterious Geographic Explorations of Jasper Morello. I dote on that film! When I first saw it screened on SBS, I was knocked out by the imagery, so dark and gothic and beautiful. Not in my wildest dreams did I imagine the front cover of one of my books would one day come from the same talented hand.

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The Mysterious Geographic Explorations of Jasper Morello is (are?) available at
www.madman.com.au
or
http://www.sjhortfilmcentral.com.film/12/
which is the official link to the itunes download.

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HOW HE DOES IT …
The silhouettes are like the silhouettes used as a form of portraiture in the 18th century, before the invention of photography. For his short short films, Anthony created the silhouettes using wire, glue and tan bark. For a longer movie such as Jasper, he used a mix of photos and drawing, manipulated with photoshop

As for the beautiful haunting backgrounds, they’re created with photographed miniatures, as many as 80 digital layers combined together to produce a 3 dimensional effect. Real effects of clouds and smoke-stacks are worked in too.

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For more on the making of the film, and details of techniques beyond my understanding, check out:
http://usa.autodesk.com/adsk/servlet/item?siteID=123112&id=7321423&linkID=7679643

THE COVERS OF WORLDSHAKER AND LIBERATOR
When my editor at Allen & Unwin suggested approaching the Jasper Morello director, I gasped at the idea. When I could speak again, I said ‘Go for it! Please, please, please!’

It’s a perfect fit: the steampunk/Victoriana mood of Worldshaker and Liberator exactly matche the steampunk/Victorian sensibility of Jasper Morello. On both covers, you see the characters as silhouettes, as in Jasper Morello. It's Col and Riff on the Worldshaker cover, and Lye, Shiv and Mr Gibber on the Liberator cover.

To appreciate the artwork at its best, you need to see how it looked before all the additional material was added. (A book cover has jobs to do, apart from the pure artwork!).

Here are the original covers of Worldshaker and Liberator, full-size on a separate page, Beautiful!

According to Anthony, the pieces of machinery on the Worldshaker cover are from ships’ engines in the Brisbane Maritime Mueseum, plus car clutch plates, cogs and various other odds and sods. An amazing mechanical collage! I'm not sure where the mighty (or mighty-looking) machines on the Liberator cover came from.

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Here’s another pic of Anthony getting distracted from his own movie

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 And here he is again, keeping company with Oscar at the awards night in Hollywood!

 

 

 

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Richard Harland.