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Old Apr 22 2011, 07:24 AM   #1
D. M. Domini
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Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Chicagoland
Gender: F
Fan of: Afra Lyon, and Robinton!
Now Reading: Sabriel by Garth Nix
Exclamation Damia cover concept art

So. I was noodling around on the web, looking for a larger picture of the Damia coverart we all know and love. And I chanced upon two *preliminary* versions of the Damia coverart, both done as I understand it by Romas Kukalis. I found them here. The meta data for the images says 2009, which seems to indicate someone took pics and uploaded them fairly recently (yes, recently, this fandom moves slow), which is probably why I just discovered this. If they'd been up in 2001 or so I would have been all over them back then.

They are incredibly creepy. And Damia looks like an 80s hooker. (Am I blunt? I am blunt.) But--I do understand that they were preliminaries, which aren't supposed to be perfect, and obviously folks caught onto their flaws, since the final version was pretty spiffy.

Version One: Afra's gaze is penetrating in every meaning of the word.



I think in modern slang, Afra would be called a "creeper". (Because "creep" is no longer good enough for teens?) Unless perhaps that isn't Afra? Maybe it was intended to be Sodan. In which case, the image is right-on for that aspect. Sodan was creepy.

Damia's still alarming, however. Afra: "Hey mom, dad--look what I'm going to marry!" Gos and Cheswina: "There was always something wrong with you, Afra, but now we have proof."

Art director: AHHHH! THE GAZE! CLOSE THE EYES! CLOSE THEM!


Version Two: They closed his eyes. And put flowers in Damia's hair.



Damia's gained some heavy eyeliner. If I had to guess, they were attempting to go for sultry/sexy Damia here (and in the prior version)...perhaps trying to go for a temptress that lured in the Methody Capellan...it just wasn't working.

I don't know what the rocks puffing red smoke are, but they look pretty phallic.

Final Version: In case we forget, here's the actual coverart that the book had.



I like how Afra and Damia are posing while the liner they should be teleporting says, "Screw it, they're taking too long, we'll just use this handy runway and our chemical rockets. Nobody will mind: Iota Aurigae is already a wasteland of rock."

I do like (no sarcasm) how the final version has a Dama that looks confident and Prime-like, like her mother. The earlier two versions make it clear we could have had a Damia more interested in her sex appeal than confident in her Talent. Final cover wins by a longshot.
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