Creating my Own Universe

I’ve been thinking about creating cover art and (hopefully) book covers for some time. The big thing with this is how to go about it, I couldn’t work it out and I’m quite a creative person.

That was until I read this from Christoper Doll: Drawing a spaceship a day

Now, while I’m not drawing a spaceship a day I have been having a go at some sketching and using some of the sketches on Christoper’s website as inspiration.


After dusting out the old cobwebs and having a look at what other artists have done I’ve drawn some of my own, drawing on their inspiration. This means I’ve taken some of the design DNA and added a twist of my own to make it mine.


So while this is all well and good how does an artist take sketches like these and create digital art out of them?

The answer is fairly simple, import or open the picture into a graphical drawing software package. In this case I used Inkscape and after scanning the drawing I opened it in my drawing package and drew the lines in a drawing layer above the picture.




Once the line drawing was complete using the drawing tools I could fill in some colours and shading and also have a go with some textures.



Once I had got this far I needed to use something else to take it further as I didn’t think it looked terribly realistic. So the next step was to use a photo editing program to help me. I can’t afford Photoshop, so the open source world has a really great tool called GIMP (Graphical Image Manipulation Program) Adding a texture to the design gave a it that bit more depth. Personally I think it’s could still be better – I’ve lost some of the shading effect that I had brought in – but you know even Rome wasn’t built in a day.




This design was intended to be cover art from my short story The Enemy within the Rings so this needed an appropriate backdrop. After learning how to create a starfield and a planet (this literally took about 30 minutes) I created this:

Battle of the Rings

I’m really pleased with how this turned out – it’s not perfect but for now it’ll do and I can take what I learned to create even better artwork. I think I’ll be creating a few more of these works and using them here on the blog

(have a look at my blog page header) and updating the look of some of my stories.

I might start taking this up to create logos and art for others.

What do you guys think?

Simon ☺️


76 thoughts on “Creating my Own Universe”

  1. Oh, how cool! I tried dabbling in digital drawing earlier this year, but I’ve let it slide a bit these last few months… Other projects (that I find easier 😆) hijacked my time! Seeing your results though, I could be lured back into it – I’d definitely be interested in reading more posts about your artistic endeavours!


      1. I’ve had a few requests from people to write some posts on their use. They all take getting used to and perseverance.
        Google is a great help if using the the ones I use


    1. Thanks Casey, I appreciate that. I can’t lie, the spaceship took ages as I was in the unknown. But the starscape took about 5 minutes and the planet about 20.
      I was using quiet and lunchtimes at work to do this. 10 minutes here and there. At home I would have no chance. ☺️

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Ha, I used to have free time at work…we decided it would be best to homeschool this year (and it HAS been a really great decision for our situation) so…I look for time in the middle of the night! 🙂 One of these days I will spend more time with art! 😉

        Liked by 1 person

      2. I know what you mean, I have one child at home not at school so looking after him is hard work. At least I get out to work. But the kids give you no time for yourself and also keep trashing my laptop’s. So working on writing and art at home is not easy.

        Liked by 1 person

      1. Being ‘good’ is a very subjective term. Just in the same way writing is expression at in all its forms is an expression of one’s self. Sure in your minds eye you have an idea of how you want it to turn out. But don’t get hung up over it. ☺️

        Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks for the pointer, I’ve already found Blender and installed it, I’ve struggled to get to grips with it I have to say but I didn’t know I could import 2D Inkworks into it.


      1. Your welcome. Importing svg is actually quite easy. They can be edited as nurbs then, and faces can be textured with your prepared pixel designs. There are already lovely 2d animation realized with it on YouTube, but you might like to see some BlenderGuru tutorials first, to get additional grip.

        Liked by 1 person

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