I’m sharing a special project with you today. A book cover commission for independent publisher Mothers Milk Books, who “celebrate femininity and empathy through images and words”. Something I wholeheartedly support.
For the 3rd edition of The Forgotten and the Fantastical, edited by Teika Bellamy, I was asked to create a cover illustration based on the Welsh goddess Blodeuwedd. Pronounced ‘bluh die weth’.
This beautiful Welsh Goddess’ name means ‘flower face’. Magicians fashioned her from oak, meadowsweet and broom flowers. Folk tales say that Blodeuwedd was unfaithful to her husband, Lleu Llaw Gyffes (who is a central figure in the fourth branch of the Mabinogi.)
As punishment for her crime, Blodeuwedd was transformed into an owl. She forever remained in this form, mourning the loss of love and reminding people of two important lessons: relationships are fragile, and beauty is indeed only skin deep. (You can read more about the Welsh legend here).
The making of a Welsh Goddess Illustration
First, the moodboard…I gather imagery for inspiration.
After some sketching, I send some ideas to the client (thanks to my iPad pro and Apple pencil this is extremely quick and easy!)
I build the layers and Blodeuwedd takes form
‘Wise women, children, bears, and ravens, these are stories that hear the songs of mermaids and strange sounds in the woods – an utterly enchanting anthology.’
Angela Readman (author of Don’t Try This at Home)
This is a wonderful project to be involved in and I’m very proud to be able to add it to my portfolio of illustration!
Have an inspired day