Exclusive Interview with Artist Cassandra Jean!

I am very pleased to share this interview with you today. As a huge Shadowhunter Chronicles fan, case I have enjoyed the artwork that Cassandra Jean has produced for the fandom, and am excited about the new things coming, like the calendars and The Secret Treason graphic novel.

For those of you who don’t know, Cassandra Jean is an artist. She works on many things, like original graphic novels, and does artwork for other YA novels, like Beautiful Creatures, The Lynburn Legacy, Shades of London and The Raven Boys. You can check out her website, and her artwork, here.

Cassandra Jean became known to me when she started doing the artwork for the Shadowhunter tarot card series.

Here are some examples:

There are SO many more of these, and you should check them out, because they are SO cool.

After this, I decided to check out Cassandra’s website, where she does a multitude of artwork, all of it so talented and beautiful. I enjoy any time she does work, and especially when its from the Shadowhunter Chronicles. Occasionally she does “sneak peek” or “spoiler” work for City of Heavenly Fire, or to celebrate a holiday and such.

Just recently, she unveiled the Men of the Shadowhunter Chronicles calendar, featuring all of our favorite hotties from the series. You can see all those by clicking here.

Now, I’ve had the awesome opportunity to interview the lovely Cassandra. Enjoy!

Sara: What is your background in art? When did it become something that you were really passionate about?

Cassandra: I’ve pretty much always wanted to be an artist since I was a child. I think there might have been a year in elementary school where I considered being a veterinarian (animals!) but that didn’t last long. I have always wanted to draw. I come from an artistic family so they’ve been a big influence on me and have always encouraged my artistic side. My mother writes, my father paints, my grandparents were art teachers, photographers, writers, seamstresses… so, yeah, I’ve basically always been into art. I majored in Illustration in college and started working on graphic novels straight out of school.

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Sara: How did you get involved with doing artwork for Cassandra Clare and the Shadowhunter Chronicles?

Cassandra: Through my fanart actually! She liked a drawing I had done of Will Herondale and approached me about working on the Shadowhunter Codex. I said YES (of course!) and the rest is history! Since then I’ve had the pleasure of illustrating a lot of things for her, she’s so much fun.

Sara: How do you approach a piece of artwork based on something that has already been written?

Cassandra: Working on something that someone else has written is a lot different from creating your own story from scratch. While working on an original artwork, you are using a character who is unknown and you have complete control over who they are and how they look. But while working on something that has already been written, you’re interpreting something that already exists. Neither one or the other is better, but both processes have their own pros and cons. When I work on something already written, I get to skip the whole script writing stage! But, there is a lot of pressure to get things right. Because these are characters that people have already read about and fallen in love with, and the fans will notice if you mess something up. So in order to get things right, I read the book, and while reading, I take careful notes about the characters. I write down their names, their family, their appearances (hair, eyes, facial structure, fashion sense, quirks, habits, etc) so that when I draw them later, I can consult my notes.

Sara: So many people know you as the artist behind the Shadowhunter tarot cards, the City of Heavenly Fire sneak peeks and now the Shadowhunter Men calendar, but what other art do you do?

Cassandra: Well! At the moment my life is pretty Shadowhunter-ed up! But I work as an illustrator for YenPress. I’ve done the graphic novel adaptations of “Beautiful Creatures” and “Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children” and a short comic titled “Something Wikkid”. And I have more books lined up!

Sara: What is your process like? What sort of mediums do you use?

Cassandra: I work almost entirely on a computer. Sometimes when I’m sketching up thumbnails for comic pages or trying to decide on the layout for an illustration I will use pencil and paper, but most all of my process is done on the computer these days. I use a tablet so that I can draw digitally into programs like SAI and photoshop.

Sara: What is sort of your goal when you are doing a piece of work? How do you work to capture the essence of a character?

Cassandra: Uhm… hard question! Well, I read the book first and foremost. Since that’s the best way to get to know a character. When I draw them, I try to keep in mind their personality. If they are sexy and flirty, or shy, or quiet and moody. Our personalities, and the character’s personalities, effect how they dress or how I would pose them. Often when I draw a picture I try to focus on the overall mood. Like if I’m in the mood to draw something sad, or happy, or sweet. Then I try to pick characters to draw that suit the mood I’m in. It seems to work out more naturally that way.

Sara: You’ve worked on so many different projects besides The Mortal Instruments like mangas, and Beautiful Creatures and Raven Boys artwork. Are there ever any challenges in doing so many different things or do you like the challenge of that?

Cassandra: I like the challenge. In fact, I kind of need it. No matter how much I love something, I can get exhausted drawing it over and over without any variety. That’s the sort of thing that can send me into a slump. So that’s why I draw so many different subjects. It’s refreshing, and I feel like it keeps me on my toes. Especially when it comes to comics. A comic can take me 8-9 months to finish, and every page is filled with tons of drawings of the same characters. So working on a variety of fanart and projects at the same time prevents me from falling into a rut.

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Sara: What are some projects that you’ve worked on that some people don’t know about but you’d really like them to?

Cassandra: I used to illustrate an online comic called Land of Lions! I haven’t been able to work on it for several years now, since Yen Press started hiring me for work, and these days I’ve improved a lot so the artwork in it is a bit old. But I’m still pretty proud of what I did with it. If people were interested I’d be flattered if they took a look at it. It’s up on a website called MangaMagazine.net In fact that website has a lot of awesome stuff you should check it out some time if you’re interested in reading original works online.

Sara: What are some of your hobbies besides artwork? Do you read, and have you read the books that you’ve done the artwork for?

Cassandra: Art kind of eats up my life. It’s my work AND my hobby. But I do read a lot too. I have of course read all the books I’ve done artwork for. I try not to draw characters for things I haven’t read because I think that if I didn’t, they wouldn’t turn out right. I wouldn’t have a very good grasp on what the characters looked like, how they acted or dressed… (with the exception of the Dark Artifices and TLH which have not been written yet, but Cassandra describes the characters to me in detail so that I get them right) So yeah! All the series I’ve done drawings of, I’ve read, and I’ve read plenty that I haven’t done art for either, sometimes I like to just read. I also play a lot of video games when I get the chance. And rearranging my book shelves. Does that count as a hobby? Because I love doing that.

Sara: What are you working on now and what can we expect from you in the future?

Cassandra: Lately, I’ve been trying to slowly hash out an original story that I’d like to illustrate. But I think it will be quite some time before that’s ready to show off. I’m also drawing the Shadowhunter Calendars still.You can also expect the “Miss Peregrine” graphic novel to be in stores in October along with the Shadowhunter Codex (some of my illustrations are in there, though I haven’t seen the book yet myself so I’m not sure which ones made the cut!) Also the next book I’m working on, which was leaked a few days ago, is The Secret Treasons with Cassandra Clare. So please look forward to it!

 Sara: What can you tell us about The Secret Treasons, and what and when can we expect that? 

Cassandra: I can’t tell you much about it other than what you already know. It follows Valentine and the Circle back in their younger days. I’m looking forward to drawing not only the younger versions of Valentine, Jocelyn and Luke, but also drawing the characters that we never got to meet in the books because they had already passed away. Stephen, Michael… I’m so excited about working on a Shadowhunter comic. Hopefully soon, the publisher (Yen Press) will release more information about it for you guys to feast on.

Sara: A nice little fun question that I ask all the people I interview: who is your fictional crush?

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Cassandra: Crush? As in just one? UH…Ragnor Fell! My big cranky green lima bean. What’s that? No, he’s not dead! He’s just…hibernating!! [sound of gross sobbing in the distance]

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I hope you all enjoyed this interview with this awesome, awesome artist and super cool person. This was a super fun interview to do, and Cassandra had a lot of new stuff to share with us all.

I hope you all will check her out. You can find her at:

Her Website

Her Tumblr

Her Deviant Art Site

Her Twitter

Happy Reading everyone!

 

Men of Shadowhunter Chronicles Calendar!

Now, viagra buy as if Cassandra Jean, couldn’t get any cooler than she already is, a Shadowhunter Men calendar for 2014 was announced.

For those of you who don’t know, Cassandra Jean is an artist, most known for her Mortal Instruments and Infernal Devices fan art. She also does work for original graphic novels, and other YA works like Beautiful Creatures and The Raven Boys. She did a set of tarot cards using the characters from the various Shadowhunter series: The Infernal Devices, the mysterious TLH, The Mortal Instruments, and The Dark Artifices.

So when I found out there would be a calendar, featuring all the steamy men of these series, done in the brilliant artwork of Cassandra Jean, I was SO excited!

Here are the art pieces for each month!

Shadowhunter Calendar January

January 2014: Featuring James “Jem” Carstairs of the Infernal Devices trilogy

Shadowhunter Calendar February

February 2014: Featuring Magnus Bane and Alexander “Alec” Lightwood of the Mortal Instruments series celebrating Valentine’s Day

Shadowhunter Calendar March

March 2014: Featuring William “Will” Herondale from the Infernal Devices trilogy

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Shadowhunter Calendar April - Matthew Fairchild

April 2014: Featuring Matthew Fairchild of TLH, the parabatai of James Herondale.

Shadowhunter Calendar May Jaime Rosales

May 2014: Featuring Jaime Rosales of the Dark Artifices trilogy

Shadowhunter Calendar June Jace

June 2014: Featuring Jace Wayland Morgenstern Herondale Lightwood (depending on what you call him) of The Mortal Instruments series.

I call him Jace Lightwood. I can do that because I’m so marrying him. Sigh <3

Shadowhunter Calendar July Julian Blackthorn

July 2014: Featuring Julian Blackthorn of The Dark Artifices trilogy

Shadowhunter Calendar August Mark Blackthorn

August 2014: Featuring Mark Blackthorn of The Dark Artifices trilogy, brother to Julian.

I think I’m going to really like Mark…

Shadowhunter Calendar September Simon

September 2014: Featuring Simon Lewis of The Mortal Instruments series.

Can I just say, the fact that his shirt references the Oregon Trail game is just too hilarious for life?

Shadowhunter Calendar October Raphael

October 2014: Featuring Raphael Santiago of The Mortal Instruments series, looking very creepy for Halloween haha.

Shadowhunter Calendar November-James Herondale

November 2014: Featuring James Herondale of TLH

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Aren’t all those pictures absolutely amazing? AND super steamy and hot. I don’t know about you ladies but I’m pretty excited about those Will Herondale and Jace Lightwood months…

And I know what you’re wondering, where’s December! December is going to be a GROUP picture, and its coming soon. Even better news, there will  be a GIRL character calendar as well.

I am so excited!

And a little surprise for you all, I have an exclusive interview with the artist herself coming tomorrow!

What do you guys think of the Shadowhunter Calendar artwork? Which ones are your favorites? As always, share in the comments!

Blogger Spotlight-Megan from LuxenArmy.Net

One of the best parts about running this blog is having the ability to meet some really cool people, generic and some of the coolest people that I have met have led me to really cool blogs. I’ve said it before, cialis 40mg no one’s blog is 100% original but everyone’s voices are different so there are blogs that I love to read because I love the writer, and I love the passion that they show for what they are writing. They are fun and interesting to read and they inspire me to get better and better in my blog.

So I decided to do a feature (inspired by Megan at the Nerdy Girlie’s Geek Girls Gab), where I profile the bloggers that I love. Not only do I get to find out more about them, but I also get to share them with you guys! Most of the bloggers that I follow are like me, nerd girls, fan girls and they enjoy the same things as me, and you! Every blogger that I profile is one that is super important to me and I urge you to check them out!

If you are interested in being featured on the Blogger Spotlight, feel free to contact me, please! I would love to hear from you and would love to feature you! Plus I just like learning about new blogs!

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This week’s blogger is Megan from Luxen Army, but also iFandoms Collide and Novel Reality.

She also writes for City of Shadowhunters, The Mortal Institute and Page to Premiere.

Her Tumblr

Her Twitter

Her Facebook Page

You can find the social media pages for Luxen Army below!

This is how she introduces herself:

Megan Christine Herondale/Lewis/Ivashkov/Black/Ryves/Shaw/Odair/Collins/Parnell …okay so my name’s only Megan Christine Kaniasty and I tried to steal a couple of fictional last names – arrest me (and then ask me what ever I say can and will be held against me…because in that case I would say…) 

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Sara: Tell me a Little Bit About Yourself:

Megan: I am a 22 year old full time student. I am going to school at a private Christian college called Biola University, and in two years I will be the proud owner of a BA in elementary education with an emphasis in special needs, a minor in Biblical studies, and a certification to teach. My earliest memory was of me wanting to become a published writer, and that is exactly what I plan on doing. I am working on a trilogy now, but I have also been keeping up other book ideas in my journals as they come along. I write everyday, whether it is for a blog, in my diary, or for my novels – I need to write, it is my forever love. My other love is this boy Sean Patrick Sugg. In my phone he is known as “Jace Herondale”. We’ve been together for almost 6 years now, and even though he isn’t an alien, a shadowhunter, or some awesome downworlder, we have one of those real life fairy tail stories. Oh yeah, I also love to read. Obsessed with it actually; books are my heroine. I know how blessed I am and I thank God every single day!

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Sara: Tell me about your blog: 

Megan: Of all the blogs I am apart of, or that I write for, LuxenArmy.net is my baby because it is something that I had created. I brought on three other very talented girls from different time zones to help me run the website at all hours of the day, so that this becomes the best lux fansite out there! Luxenarmy.net is a fansite based on Jennifer Armentrout’s Lux series novels – it even has approval of author Jennifer Armentrout! The site offers everything from news on Jennifer Armentrout’s novels (specifically focusing on the Lux series, and the Arum series) to forums for fans to live chat in with one another, and even a place to submit lux series fanfiction and fanart! The luxen army has a twitter @LUXENarmy , a tumblr, a facebook page that you should like and, luxenarmy.net ‘s origins, the facebook group.

 Sara: What inspired you to start your blog?

Megan: I started the luxen army after interviewing Jennifer Armentrout for ifandomscollide.com. I have called Lux fans the luxen army before, but after the interview, I really wanted to create a real life luxen army. I did it for fun, not expecting many people to see it because who am I? I am nobody really, just this nerd girl in LA. Well little did I know Jennifer Armentrout would catch wind of my facebook group and share about it over twitter. This facebook group of mine turned into a website, a facebook page, tumblr, and twitter because of the amount of unbelievable support that flooded in. I asked Tatiana, one of my best friends to help me out because I was new at this, she has a blog, and she was there when the luxen army invaded my life. Two other girls came to me asking if I would like help with the site, and thank God for them. Erin has designed the website beautifully, and Jessica has an AMAZING talent that I can’t wait to be shared with everyone in the Luxen Army!

Sara: What is your favorite nerd memory?

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Megan: My FAVORITE nerd memory is Wondercon 2013. The Mortal Instruments is my favorite book series, Cassandra Clare is my favorite author, The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones is being made into a film, and they were having a panel at wondercon AND a meet and greet (if you happen to be lucky enough to win tickets TO the meet and greet). Lets just say I was really, REALLY lucky. Long story short, I was dressed up as one of the characters, Isabelle Lightwood (this is the nerdy part, me in cosplay. Well, I guess being at Wondercon is pretty nerdy as well…) I had an unbelievable time meeting the cast, and got kicked out for having my custom phone case signed. A security guard took my badge, and walked me out of Wondercon. We were talking the whole way out, and before I left I ended up talking my way into getting the security guard to give me my wondercon badge back so that I could still get back in. I met the cast, hugged the cast, and made a memorable exit. BEST. NERD. MEMORY. EVER…I have another amazing nerd memory meeting the director of The Mortal Instruments…I am a truly blessed nerd girl.

Sara: What are you most looking forward to, as far as new books/movies/etc?

Megan: I can’t even fathom an answer to this question. I get butterflies in my stomach and see lots of pictures flashing in my mind of new books, movies, movie trailers, interviews, and such, when I think of this question. I am looking forward to it all.

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Sara: As my blog is mostly about books and reading, what are some of your favorite books or authors to read? 

Megan:  Series: The Mortal Instruments, The Infernal Devices, The Lux series, The Shades of London, The Demon’s Lexicon, The Divergent series, The Hunger Games series, The Morganville Vampires, The Hush Hush series, The Vampire Academy series, The Mara Dyer series, The Feather Trilogy…the list can go on and on. As for Authors, well that list can go on and on as well, here are just a few (not including the authors of the series I’ve listed above): Sara Dessen, Nicholas Sparks, Morgan Matson, Andrew Smith, Leigh Bardugo, Lex Thomas… and again I say the list will go on and on (I know there are a TON more authors I absolutely LOVE but did not list, please PLEASE know you’re in my heart, but if I continue to list authors I love, well this would turn into an encyclopedia length blurb!)

Sara: What are some of your favorite blogs to follow?

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Megan: I don’t really follow blogs other than those I write for, my best friends’ blogs: whatanerdgirlsays.com and fangirlfeeels.wordpress.com, OR select authors. Cassandra Jean is the exception being neither a blog I write for, my best friend, or an author – I just think she is absolutely brilliant!

Sara: Who is your fictional crush (what, we’re nerd girls, we all have one!)

Megan: Now THIS list will be quite long, I have more than one fictional crush. I guess I will give you my top ten – narrowing it down to only 10 is quite hard by the way.

1. Will Herondale (TID)

2. Jace Herondale (TMI)

3. Daemon Black (Lux)

4. Four (yes I put Four on 4 on purpose) (Divergent)

5. Jem Carstairs (especially after reading the Clockwork Prince graphic novel!) (TID)

6. Simon Lewis (TMI)

7. Cam Hamilton (Wait for You)

8. Adrian Ivashkov (Vampire Academy)

9. Finnick Odair (THG)

10. Nick Ryves (Demon’s Lexicon)

…OH WAIT! I have more, TONS more fictional crushes! Oh boy, I believe I am a fictional whore…

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I hope you guys enjoyed this week’s edition of the Blogger Spotlight.

You can check out the amazing bloggers I have interviewed in the past here.

And read all about last week’s Spotlight girl, Jackie from Seeking Bazinga!