Why Rafael Albuquerque is Amazing
(or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Hire a Cover Artist)
We weren’t even thinking about him for the covers. We knew we wanted something that said “horror” but could also be literary and elegant too. We wanted a strong design that showcased a cool logo and the creator’s names. A daunting task. I thought about it constantly. We were throwing around a lot of names, some big names, some unknowns. But we certainly weren’t even considering Rafael Albuquerque for the covers—he was too busy kicking ass on the interiors.
Then he sent me an idea and I was blown away.
It happened like this: late Friday afternoon Rafael shot me an email, “…I don’t know what your thinking for covers, but I had an idea, something like this…” with these two sketches attached.
Pretty hot right? Bold. Iconic. It looked like a book cover. Over the weekend I talked to Scott. He loved them too. Monday I met with Karen, Will, Ken Lopez and Richard Bruning. It was the fastest meeting I’ve ever had. We loved the layout and the concept. We thought maybe, since we were telling a dual narrative we should have a scene from each story, split by that killer logo, for the first five covers. Other than that, we loved it. No notes. Like Steve says in his introduction to the hardcover, referring to Scott’s outline for Avamp, “Why f--- with genius?”
Rafael took the note about the two scenes, chose Skinner’s gang waiting for the train, re-worked the Pearl image and we had our cover.
I showed it to Scott and Steve, they loved it and that was it. Cut. Print.
So we included these two sketches (along with TONS of other bonus features like early character designs, variant covers, script pages and more!) so you could get a behind-the-scenes look at the birth of “American Vampire.” Enjoy!