What about a story can be illustrated without giving too much of it away? How do you go about doing this?
3 ghost stories, and for each one we’re tasked to come up with a cover. the tricky thing about this particular task is that it can be very easy to read through a story, and when asked to produce a piece for it, our natural instinct is to jump right to the juicy bit at the end which tells of some climactic event which can sum the story up easily. This way, however easy it may be to portray, might actually ruin the piece for the reader because it gives away the ending. Its kind of like seeing the cover for Jaws in the movie theatre and the poster shows the shark being blown up by a man with a rifle shooting a scuba tank in the sharks mouth. We get the ending before watching the movie. Trailers for films sometimes do this, showing the best parts of the film before anyone’s seen it. This raises ticket sales and ends up with people paying to see the best bits of the film again with the rest being crap.
With illustration, trying to find a balance between not giving the climax away for free and trying to draw the audience in, can be a very fine line indeed.
However, with some stories, they truly are boring. Nobody wants to pick up a boring book (unless you’re that kind of person, in which case stop reading here and go back to your mundane book). But then again, we’re talking about an illustration. With things like commissions, you’re almost guaranteed to be tasked with something you don’t like. But in any case, working with what you have and producing something nice can be well worth it.