The Border Keeper — with video

7KJennings Border Keeper

Last year, Kerstin Hall’s novella The Border Keeper came out from, and I did the cover art! It was revealed last year on Bookish, but that post has vanished now, so here are some process details — with a video.

It’s a beautiful, luminous, vast novella, and I recommend it. But to capture that, the art process went through a few iterations — a very clear initial concept had to be shelved (for good reasons) and then it was an adventure to capture the sense of shifting through of the book. Here are a couple of the later sketches.


Since it covers multiple worlds (one of the reasons it feels so spacious, I think) there were many elements to try and include.


Not least among which was everyone’s favourite crab-baby.


With so many details I had to cut a few test patches, to see how fine I could get the (e.g.) barbwire (the crab-baby, alas, had to be further simplified).


Usually my silhouettes are a single piece. This time, to catch the difference in colouring and allow for some sizing adjustments, I cut it in three pieces: trees, wire, and Border Keeper.

Here is a video of part of the process (time lapse, obviously, and if you catch a glimpse of a bandage it was not from the knife — I had an incident with a julienne peeler):

And here is the final cover for the novella.


Tremontaine – time lapse

Here is a compilation of a few time-lapse videos behind-the-scenes on the early Tremontaine covers. The making of videos is an ongoing learning curve, and for part of this I had a rather unwieldy camera rig, with the phone attached to my collar by a gorillapod (if you look carefully, you can catch a glimpse of it in the photos on’s article). In the other parts, the gorillapod was wrapped around the neck of a bottle.

Season 1 is now complete, but the story has been renewed for a second season.