Meet the Artist Behind the Gorgeous Indonesian Book Covers – Part 2
In Part 1 of our interview with Nicholas Filbert Chandrawienata, we explored his early exposures to Harry Potter and art and discussed his process for designing the Indonesian covers. We also took a look at his past work in adult coloring books. Now, we get to delve deeper into the covers themselves and find out how he thinks the expansion of the series and the global community will affect illustration and design.
Many illustrators and designers can have such a hard time securing gigs and subsiding on freelance rates, especially in the beginning stages of their careers. What advice would you give to others aiming to land similar high-profile opportunities?
Nicholas: Be confident in your work, keep practicing your craft, and get to know more people from different industries because opportunities can come from anywhere!
As for the covers, what made you want to incorporate so many elements from the series?
Nicholas: I tried to make it as interesting as it could be. I think that the details will make people who have read the books feel a certain way and people who have never read the books become interested [in reading the books].
Both the Sorcerer’s Stone and the Chamber of Secrets book covers feature a prominent bird front and center. Why birds as opposed to the other magical creatures and would you continue this theme for additional covers? [Note: the Prisoner of Azkaban cover has since been revealed]
Nicholas: The theme that I want to push in these covers is the fantastic beasts of the Harry Potter world. I have thought a lot about which beast I want to put on each cover. It has to be one of the most prominent beasts in the respective novel without spoiling the story for the reader. So it won’t just be birds. The covers will show different beasts as the books go on.
Is there one particular cover ahead that you imagine will prove most challenging?
Nicholas: It would probably be the seventh book because it is the final book and there would be a lot of elements that I would want to put on the cover. Of course, the challenge would be determining the right amount of elements to put on this final and very exciting book.
How important was it to know that you would be designing the Indonesian book covers?
Nicholas: It is a special feeling for me to have the opportunity to design the Indonesian covers. To be able to work on a franchise that you love is really something.
Does it worry you when non-Indonesians are tasked with producing art that is supposed to resonate with and represent your country’s culture or is this part of working toward a more global perspective?
Nicholas: It does not worry me at all. I think, as you said, it is part of working towards a more global perspective. It is good to have different artists around the world to draw or make something about your country as it will only make the industry grow, in my opinion. Take Japan for example. Tons of artists around the world are inspired by Japanese culture and I think, for a global perspective, it is a very good thing.
Finally, how do you think the expansion of the series’ universe (Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, Cursed Child, WWoHP) is going to influence the work of artists like yourself in the years to come?
Nicholas: It certainly will open up more opportunities for artists around the world to be able to work on this amazing franchise!
That concludes our interview. To see more of Nicholas’s work and to catch the upcoming Indonesian covers, be sure to check him out here.