Friday, November 6, 2009

Dragon 381

Finally! Here is the cover of Dragon Magazine 381. I had the privilege of working with Jon Schindehette again, and I'm flattered that he trusted me with such a cool assignment. It was great to be given the same kind of responsibility that guys like Kekai Kotaki, Cyril Van Der Haegen, and Kieran Yanner have taken on as well!


There was a lot of good back-and-forth in the early stages of thumbnailing, so that we could get as close as possible to the idea that Jon envisioned for the piece. The result was a composition that was less typical for me, which is good. That's one of the neat things about working with an art director: you tackle problems you wouldn't have come up with alone.

I believe in making images that A. have a strong impact at a glance, and B. hold up under scrutiny. I've been following Jon's Artorder blog long enough to know that whenever he posts cover images, he makes the files extra-big (and why shouldn't they be? they're covers!). Knowing this was added incentive to make sure that this image wouldn't just fall apart once the viewer got a close look. Its one of the most "hi-res" images I've done in a while, if that makes any sense.

Having moved to New Mexico has manifested in its own little way; the color palette and the rock formations in the background weren't any product of growing up in South Carolina, lemme tell ya. Now that I can go see some epic mountains at sunset, its wild to witness how much atmospheric perspective obliterates detail and just reduces mountains into simple shapes of brilliant color slashing away at the horizon. The clouds are pretty, too. My New Mexico friends have taken to calling them "McLean Clouds", which makes me happy.

Thanks for reading! I've got more goodies in the works, another cover included. It might be a little while longer before I can post that one but it'll get here, rest assured!

8 comments:

Jake said...

That's a great cover! And that back drop is definitely southwestern. Just curious, what drew you to NM?

McLean Kendree said...

My buddy Kyler expressed interest in coming out here, and I knew that I needed to get out of my parents' house anyway - so it was off to New Mexico! Leave it to friends to help you make the leap you wouldn't have done otherwise.

Eric Braddock said...

Damn, awesome cover, man! Gratz on the gig. Great color and atmosphere going on, seems NM is already having it's influence haha

capprotti said...

Daaaaaaaaaaamn McLean! I'm so impressed by this! You knocked that ball outta the PARK! John was right to assign it to you. Congrats man!

Chris Rahn said...

Holy crap McLean...that's an F-ing killer cover. I have no idea how you pull off these colors but keep it up man.

Reid Carlisle said...

That is an amazing piece of art. I love the colors that you used and the dragon is freaking killer. Keep up the good work!

Sandra Lucia said...

epic!! i hope your having fun in nm.

luis espinosa said...

hey man.. Congrats dude.. Image is getting around a bunch of Art sites.. I geeked out when I was this on Abduzeeo.com... Sick work man!