Deceiver of Hearts

I’ve just added a new piece to my gallery, “Deceiver of Hearts”. It’s a piece that I am very proud of, so I thought I’d write a little blog post about it.

Copy of Deceiver of Hearts

Recently when creating my art I’ve been actively thinking about my real goal in all this; to create art that people would want to use for book covers. This is why, along with “The Rose and the Sword”, “Deceiver of Hearts” has a very structured feel to the composition, you can almost see a book title and author being added to the image.

The model who I used (and have used multiple times over the years), Elandria, is my favourite to work with, her costumes (all made by herself) are stunning, the poses and expressions are a joy when creating my art.

For “Deceiver of Hearts” I wanted to create a fantasy-style portrait, one that on its own could tell a story. Perhaps she is the queen of a kingdom in a fictional realm where sorcery and dragons exist. Perhaps she’s an evil sorceress preparing to unleash her demonic army on the land. I hope the opportunities are endless.

When creating this image I found myself doing a lot of painting on top of the original photography. The original image was very “flat” having been taken on a cloudy day there was no obvious light source. For this image I needed light and shadows, so after creating some in Photoshop I went to my trusty Wacom tablet and began refining the highlights and really making the image pop.


The background I used was a glorious abstract fractal design by RuleByArt. I have a few more that are incredibly cool, I have also used a them in a few other pieces. On top of creating a fantasy image I did want a slight science fiction element to the piece, I feel the background really helped bring this idea to life.

The texture I used is by another favourite artist of mine, Marcela Bolivar. Again, I have used her textures in many of my pieces and I think the addition to this piece helps reinforce that fantasy theme I wanted to portray. The texture could almost be a metaphor for a spell (or curse) the sorceress is concocting for her kingdom.

As I’ve mentioned before, one of my biggest inspirations comes from music, Within Temptation specifically and this image is no different. like “Heaven’s Rage” (which also follows a similar theme to this piece) I was heavily inspired by the operatic section of Within Temptation’s song “Raise Your Banner” (from the 4 min, 43 second mark). There’s something so epic and atmospheric about that piece of music that I feel adds another layer to my image.

I hope you enjoyed the piece and reading a little about it. If you did, go show it some love on my Instagram page! And don’t forget this image and all others are available for licensing if you do have a project you think this image would fit perfectly with. Send me an email and we can discuss it!