Behold the cursed awakening. Behold the rebirth...
It’s been ages since I’ve featured an artist on here, so I figured I should go through my list and pick someone whose style and subject matter falls a little outside of those typical of the genre. Argentinian artist and illustrator Santiago Caruso definitely doesn’t fit the mold of your usual album cover artist. He produced the striking artwork for October Falls’s upcoming album The Plague of a Coming Age, but aside from that he hasn’t really done much metal-related work. His portfolio is still quite impressive however; he has created illustrations and covers for books, including an illustrated version of H.P. Lovecraft’s The Dunwitch Horror, and has produced several other album covers and layouts. He has also done numerous exhibitions of his work in the US and in Argentina.
While the usual skulls, zombies and other horrific elements do make some appearances, Caruso’s subject matter isn’t restricted to the usual metal fare. Surrealist elements show up quite a bit, and in fact Caruso is part of the Beinart Surreal Art Collective. He’s also got an interesting section on his site titled ‘Historic’ which contains his artistic interpretations of things like Easter Island’s original appearance and ancient Egyptian burial practices. Pretty cool stuff.
I’m always a sucker for artists who give glimpses into their creative process, and Caruso delivers with some unfinished sketches that appear alongside the completed works in a few sections of his site. It sort of looks like he begins with rough digital sketches that map out the basic design, colors and shading, and then he slowly adds in details and finer lines to complete the image. It’s fascinating because the textures on some of the close-ups almost look like watercolor with the way that the colors bleed into one another, while others look like they were done with pen and ink. Caruso’s style is an interesting departure from some of the other digital artists I’ve featured whose finished works strive for a more polished, realistic look.
Caruso has a Shop section of his site in which he states that pretty much any of his works can be sold as a print. I’d imagine that if you search around you can find some of the books he’s illustrated for sale as well.