Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Geek Girl Artist

Mad Norwegian Press is offering a special pre-order deal on their "Geek Girl Chronicles".  This four volume set, schedule to be released in  November, includes Chicks Dig Time Lords, Whedonistas, Chicks Dig Comics and the forthcoming Chicks Unravel Time. What ties these books together - other than their sheer awesomeness?  The amazing cover artist Katy Shuttleworth. 

Katy is a talented animator (my children were a bit starstruck to learn she worked on the PBS Emmy-award winning series "Word Girl") who puts an incredible amount of time and detail into her illustrations. Her groundbreaking cover for Chicks Dig Time Lords featured a now-beloved character which she and the editors dubbed "Verity" after Doctor Who founding producer Verity Lambert.  We were thrilled when she agreed to do the cover art for Chicks Unravel Time and brought Verity out to play once more.

The best part of a Katy Shuttleworth cover is decoding the symbols and fannish bits of triva she slips into every piece, in fact it's almost become a tradition for fans to pick out these clever visuals.   (I fully anticipate the "Media Art: Analyzing the work of Katy Shuttleworth" at a future convention!) For example, on the cover of Whedonistas there were visual references to Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Firefly, Angel as well as Mutant Enemy, Joss Whedon's production company.  For Chicks Unravel Time, Verity is still wearing her Rose Tyler wrist warmers and iconic fourth Doctor scarf first seen on the cover of Chicks Dig Time Lords, but given the nature of this book she is unraveling the scarf, yard by yard*. This visual alone is what sold both Liz and myself on this version of the cover.  Katy took the iconic and, with a clever twist, referenced both the title and mission of the book. As someone with absolutely zero artistic talent or vision, I am amazed that someone managed, with a few brush strokes, to capture the very thing that 34 writers chase down with thousands of words. 

To say that we are Katy Shuttleworth fangirls may be a slight understatement. Now, if we can just convince someone to make these covers into posters!

*There are a few other fannish nods as well but I'll leave them for you to discover!