Illustration for fiction section in New Yorker Magazine (Sept 7, 2015). Two preliminary sketches below.

This is a collaborative work of fiction by 8 prominent Quebec authors. Michel O’Toole is a journalist who disappears without a trace, while on a motorcycle road trip on the mythic highway 389 in the Quebec hinterland. My first idea was to have a segment of highway for each author’s contribution with the road disappearing into the distance.

I settled on showing him from above on the open road. I wanted the motorcycle itself to be a bit ambiguous. The shadow on the road helps in identifying what it is.

Eventually we opted for a paper texture for the road which helped the bike pop out more.

Here is where it got complicated because the publisher really wanted the author names on the cover and they had to be prominent. I modified the background to give it more of a folded map feel and found a type arrangement that worked. I also had to get the right model of motorcycle. My friend Ben and his friend George were gracious enough to come over and let me photograph them from the barn hayloft window.

Recent packaging work.

This was another fun one to work on. I have this great vintage thermos that was kind of the kicking off point for the cover. Below is the thermos and a preliminary sketch.