Zombies! for Tor Books/Tor.com

Irene called me to do this job back in February and its finally being released.

It was a tough one - I was surprised that Irene read a story about zombies and thought 'Yeah - I'll use Scott.' I took it on and was sort of wishy-washy about the idea for a long time. The story is about a disease spreading turning people into zombies but it is all written as if you're reading Gmail thread and Facebook entries. The story is pretty amusing and it took me out of my comfort zone a bit - which creatively, at the time, I desperately needed.

I eventually had this vision in my head about a dark figure or face that seemed to be pushed back into shadow - I was worried because I thought it may be too simplistic but the image never left my head.

I wanted to recreate an image similar to when I was young just as I was going to sleep in bed in my dark room and I start freaking myself out seeing figures and shapes within the blackness. Is it a figure? Is it my imagination? I guess the typical 'monster in the closet' sort of thing. Only I wanted one piece that stood out which was the teeth. In the story, you become a zombie by being bit by another zombie.

Irene immediately went for the head-shot image because it reminded her of a profile picture. Originally, I was envisioning a gray background but as soon as I thought I 'finished' it, I saw it wouldn't work. Since there was a psuedo-Facebook thread to the story, a rich blue would not only be appropriate, but helped the piece immensely.

In the end, my fears about this piece were unfounded - it turns out its one of my favorite paintings this year and probably the most creepiest I've ever done. Thanks Irene!