Jun 8, 2014

Cover The Foundations

version 1.0 cover
About a year ago I decided on a title for the second novel in the Exode Trilogy: Foundations of Eternity. Since that time, I've altered my thinking slightly about how to illustrate a key feature of this science fiction story: time travel.

For the version 1.0 cover art (shown to the right), I depicted a model being sent through time by a machine that could be easily mistaken for a teleportation terminal.

As described in a previous blog post, I've been updating the cover art for the Exode Trilogy. For my science fiction stories I like to include images of models that have been photomanipulated so as to create a somewhat alien appearance. In Foundations of Eternity, a major character is Grean. Grean is almost human. Grean is actually a Kac'hin, but she carries a swarm of zeptites in her body that allow her to change her facial features. For the version 2.0 cover, Grean's appearance is rather whimsical (see below) and does not really reflect what happens in the story. I just wanted to experiment with alien teeth...she's not a vampire!

Tori (left), Grean the Kac'hin (right)
I made use of Tori Calderwood (see this collection of Tori deviations) as the model who represents Grean on the new cover. Tori is another of the models that was photographed by Cathleen Tarawhiti and shared at deviantART for non-commercial use. As discussed in an earlier blog post, Cathleen imposes no restrictions on the types of photomanipulations that can be performed on her stock images (more unrestricted dA stock images). The lower panel in the depicted scene shows Grean within the Hierion Domain, a place outside of Time, prepared to travel through Time. For the background inside this node of the Hierion Domain, I used and image from Da Jinz at deviantART.

On the display screens behind Grean are two events within the flow of Time that are being carefully monitored by Grean. These scenes take place within the Buld Reality. Towards the right on the wall display is an image showing the arrival of a Buld spaceship in Washington D. C., the "first contact" that occurs in the final book of the Trilogy, Exode.

Towards the left on the wall display is an image of the future Grean, shown for dramatic effect on top of the Washington Monument in an imaginary scene that actually has nothing to do with the story. There is a dramatic showdown at this time, but that is a rather complex affair with multiple characters involved and it does not take place on top of the Monument! This is just a "Hollywood-type scene", a literal cliff-hanger.

Model Rose Wood (left),
Grean the Kac'hin (right)
Grean the Kac'hin
Imagine that Grean finds herself in a dangerous situation and she must use time travel to rescue herself. At the lower left of the version 2.0 cover illustration for Foundations of Eternity, she is shown standing inside a time travel device, ready to go off on just such a mission.

I used the body pose from another model (Katrina Chadwick) to depict Grean standing in the time travel device.

blue adjustment layer
Foundations of Eternity is a story about the invention of time travel, inspired by Isaac Asimov's time travel novel, The End of Eternity. In his story, Asimov described how colors shift depending on whether the Eternals are viewing the past or the future. To depict Grean moving through time towards the future, I placed her in a blue temporal beam.

Ivory Fersoni
Ivory Fersoni (an imaginary character in Exode) has been acting as an intermediate between Angela and "the editor". Angela might be the only person on Earth (if, indeed, she has not departed) with efficient access to the Sedronic Domain, allowing events from the Foundation Reality to be told in the Exode Trilogy.

Cover 2.0
The Foundations of Eternity, cover version 2.0
See my description on this blog page for image credits.
Who is off stage to our right, distracting Grean before she travels through time?
Here is the version 2.0 cover for Foundations of Eternity (image to the right). That's the White House at the top, behind Grean as she clings to the top of the Washington Monument.

There are only two characters from the story depicted on the cover, Grean and an as yet un-named Buld (shown here dressed in white). The Buld spaceship is there at the lower right. This depicted scene is rather misleading since the spaceship is "cloaked" and would not normally be visible.

During the past year I've become comfortable just using the title "Foundations of Eternity" without a leading "The". The story is a fan fiction sequel to Asimov's novel Foundation and Earth.

Asimov appears as a character in Foundations of Eternity. I pretend that when Asimov was born into the Foundation Reality he became involved in Grean's attempt to eliminate the last positronic robot from Earth.

If I wanted a "true Hollywood moment" to be shown on the cover, I'd put in the legs and feet of an evil clanking robot into the upper panel, stepping on poor Grean's hand and trying to make her fall to her death.

I can see the headlines: "Vampire found at the base of the Washington Monument".

Next: Grean on pulp magazine covers.
book and magazine covers at deviantART - more imaginary book and magazine covers

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