After many pages of thumbnails, I came up with the following sketches. At this point, I was still attempting to show as little of the story as possible on the cover, to prevent spoilers.
I quickly laid in some rough colors on these because I had never rendered anything from the Basewood world in color, and I thought it would be good to do some experimenting. I sent these off to the guys at L'employé du Moi and they felt these designs were too static and didn't represent the action of the story well enough.
After discussing it with them over email and talking to a few of my other cartoonist friends, I decided to let go of my idea to not show key story elements on the cover. When I thought about covers of books I enjoy, they often show key moments of the story. As a reader it's not spoiling that moment, it gets me excited and pulls me deeper into the story, because I want to find out what's happening in that moment.
So next week I'll show yet another round of cover designs, which I tried to make more exciting and dynamic, with spoilers galore!