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A Favorite Artist: Chris Dunn

chrisDunntreeAs you know, I love to bring you news of the best artists, books, musicians, stories…anything that is just too stellar to be kept a secret. Chris Dunn is probably not a secret any longer, but I only stumbled across his work about a year ago. He does book covers and book illustrations. And they are each a wonder to behold!

I wrote to Chris and asked him for a bit of history or glimpse into his inspiration. This was his reply:

I don’t have many quirky stories to share however, one thing you might find interesting is where I found my original inspiration to produce illustrations using anthropomorphic animals. I grew up reading the Redwall Abbey series of children’s books by Brian Jacques. Unfortunately, in 2011, Mr Jacques passed away and so I decided to create a homage to his life as a writer and to the wonderful characters he created, which have sparked my imagination ever since. That homage was my first animal illustration of a mouse sleeping at his writing desk. The mouse is supposed to be Brian, and the snow falling outside the window represents the Winter of his life. That piece is called ‘Jacques’ Rest’ and you can see it here.

You can also read about how the artist John Howe inspired me with his Tolkien illustrations by clicking here.

I know a few of us are fans of Brian Jacques, and I’ve certainly read Tolkien and appreciate the stories and some of the artwork (although I did not know about John Howe.)

It’s not possible for me to pick a favorite from Chris Dunn’s work. There’s a lot to love! I love the owl shot. I think that best represents me when I’m at work writing! That’s right about what my work area looks like too!!!

Here’s another one that intrigues me.

chrisdunnairmail It’s a bit cut off–click to view the whole picture! If you let your mouse hover over the picture after clicking, it will enlarge and you can see some of the terrific detail. In the first picture I posted at the top–you really need to hover. That shot has so much really great detail from the red squirrel hanging laundry to the harness on the crow. Fabulous stuff.

Thank you Chris Dunn!!!

Unrelated books, but covers with fantastical creatures:
Dragons of Wendal


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Posted: August 18, 2016
Filed in Art Reviews, Cover Art Discussions


  1. I only have one thing to say. Genius!

    Comment by Anonymous — August 8, 2016 @ 6:53 pm

  2. He’s very good, isn’t he?

    Comment by Maria — August 8, 2016 @ 7:28 pm

  3. Love the first cover, it is incredibly detailed, which you can see when you zoom in.

    Comment by Karen — August 9, 2016 @ 9:27 am

  4. What I find amazing about it is that it holds that detail well even small without getting “muddy.” A lot of covers have tons of detail, but lack clarity at the smaller levels so when you see thumbnails online, there’s nothing but a smudge. That one in particular has a wealth of detail that manages to be quite clear even at smaller sizes–the lines and colors set things apart and even though there’s a lot going on in the picture, you still have a great sense of the art.

    Comment by Maria — August 9, 2016 @ 9:30 am

  5. I agree.

    Was looking at my review pile this morning and found you the perfect book: – yes, you too could paint just like Chris does! Just buy (and use) “The Fantasy Artroom” by Aaron Pocock*

    * some semblance of talent may be required

    Comment by Karen — August 9, 2016 @ 1:53 pm

  6. I draw with pencils. Nothing like Chris Dunn, but if I put my mind to it, you can usually tell what the object is that I’m drawing. I don’t do well with light sources and my color choices are bunk. And I need another hobby like a hole in the head. I’ve often thought it would be handy though, if I could draw better, when I’m working on cover art!!!

    Comment by Maria — August 9, 2016 @ 2:04 pm

  7. What beautiful art work, I particularly like the Winter Guest and Air Mail and the Owl. Such talent

    Comment by tibet — August 10, 2016 @ 7:13 am

  8. I had to go check out Winter Guest. That one is very romantic. I can just see the story there!!! They are all so really great.

    Comment by Maria — August 10, 2016 @ 1:14 pm

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