In honor of Wicked Women, the latest anthology from the New England Horror Writers, I’ve invited the other contributors to crash my blog. Today I’d like to welcome another fellow ex-Tampan, the uber-talented Lynne Hansen, our cover artist.
Ok, who are you?
I’m a horror artist who specializes in book covers. I love creating art that tells a story and that helps connect publishers, authors and readers. My art has appeared on the cover of the legendary Weird Tales Magazine, and my clients include Cemetery Dance Publications, Thunderstorm Books and Raw Dog Screaming Press. I have illustrated works by New York Times bestselling authors including Jonathan Maberry, George Romero, and Christopher Golden. My art has been commissioned and collected throughout the United States and overseas. Art-Haus Gallery in Atlanta will be hosting my solo art show “Lyrical Nightmares: The Art of Lynne Hansen.”
What inspired this cover?
There were so many stories that I just absolutely loved in the Wicked Women anthology! I wanted to create a piece that really spoke to the range of women depicted in the book and not fall into the trap of the sexy, badass young woman, you know? I wanted to show how different this book is. So, inspired in part by the story “Souls of the Wicked Like Crumbs in Her Hand” which takes place in a coffee shop, I embraced the Crone archetype.
The woman on the cover not only looks like she’s up to something, but it’s pretty clear that that she’s totally got your number, you know? See her drinking a cup of coffee in a skull cup, and you’ve just GOT to know what’s going on inside those pages.
What drew you to art?
My entire life I’ve been drawn to telling stories. I was a novelist first, then a filmmaker, and now an artist. To me, they’re all just different ways of telling a story.
The thing I love most about creating art for book covers is helping talented authors find the right readers for their books. I really do just have the best job in the world. I get to read awesome books by amazing authors and then create art that resonates with the very heart of the book. It’s like getting paid to make fan art!
Who are your favorite artists?
Salvador Dali, MC Escher, Jill Bauman, and Alan Clark. I love the surreal, but above all, I love the storytellers like Bauman and Clark who can really make a book come alive.
Ok, it’s 2021. What guilty pleasures are helping you cope?
Chocolate. Lots of chocolate. And, to be honest, my newsletter. A lot of creative folks dread putting out a newsletter every month, but I absolutely love it! I started it in May when I noticed that a lot of my friends were dropping off of social media. I send folks a free downloadable Creepy Calendar every month and share some behind-the-scenes stuff and little tidbits about what’s been going on with me. I encourage folks to write back, and so many of them actually do! My newsletter reminds me that no matter how busy I am, or how isolated, I’m never alone.
What are you currently obsessed with?
Getting my schedule under control! I have way too many folks waiting in line for my work. Beyond that, I’m pretty obsessed with learning everything I can about merchandising and online sales so I can open a virtual storefront in 2021.
What are your creative mantras, rules, and/or rituals?
I’m not sure I really have any. Part of being a working creative is that I don’t get the luxury of indulging like that. If anything, my big ritual is getting up every morning and working until my eyes bleed. That counts, right?
I’ve got three:
“Playing for a living. Can’t beat it with a stick.”–Jimmy Buffet
“It’s better to regret something you HAVE done, than something you haven’t.”–Billie Joe Armstrong (Green Day)
“Do. Or do not. There is no try.”–Yoda
What were some of your highlights of 2020?
I was so insanely grateful to get to create the art for the cover of the 364th issue of the iconic Weird Tales Magazine. I’m still pinching myself.
Actually, the entire year was filled with firsts for me. Not only was Weird Tales my biggest cover, but it was also my very first magazine cover. I also got my first-ever t-shirt commission (for the famous Iliad Bookshop’s annual Halloween t-shirt.) For the first time, I got hired to do concept art for a television series currently in development.
It was also the first year I ever topped 50 commissions in my queue (and that went on to be 60 and then 70 at one point over the summer.) Crazy, right? But that’s my life–one crazy adventure after another, doing what I love!
Where can people find you?
Join my newsletter here
See my art and find out how to commission me here
Join my premade book cover club here