artwork by Eli Minaya
The Book of Watchers, is more than just a book about the Watchers. It's the first glimpse beyond the mysterious beginnings of Angelarium's larger narrative. One of the most important figures in this narrative is Raziel. He show's up only in the opening of Book of Emanations but he wasn't illustrated until after the book was complete.
Raziel is that which is not known. Which makes him a very familiar figure to us. We live our lives bathed in unknowing. The vastness of the universe means that we'll never really experience more than a small piece of it, the rest is Raziel's territory. He acts as a docent to the Infinite and transcribes all knowledge inside his book. That book is an important part of the Angelarium lore. You may have already seen it and not realized.
Eli Minaya has returned to working on Angelarium with me for Book of Watchers. He's illustrated the Seraphim that will be making an appearance and will be reprising his role as the primary writer throughout the book. I'll be sharing more of his illustrations throughout the campaign.
For the first book, I followed his lead artistically. He was designing each of the Emanations and I was making my own interpretations based off that work. This time around, he's interpreting my work. His painting of Raziel is based off the incarnation of him that I painted last year.
While this painting be the first painting many people have seen of Raziel, it was actually referencing two other paintings from earlier in the series. Knowing that he would be acting as the docent to the Infinite, I positioned him at the roots of the Ein Sof, the Tree of Life as painted by Noah Bradley.
The other painting that was referenced is a piece that I made back in 2006. It was the 12th painting in the Angelarium series and as far as I knew at the time, the last one I'd be doing. At that moment, the series was intended to be exactly 12 paintings and no more. Part of the reason I've put so much time into Angelarium over the past couple years is because over the last decade, I just couldn't seem to stay away.
Seeing a growing chain of references within Angelarium is something I never planned to happen. Getting to see Eli illustrate Raziel has been a real treat for me. This is a character I've lived with for over a decade now and he continues to be a large part of my own personal story. Keep an eye out for more paintings from Eli soon.
The reason why I've made the convention prints separate this time around, rather than adding them as part of the pledge tiers like last time has to do with shipping. There is simply no way to pack a 12x18 print into a package with a book without folding it. That meant we shipped out a lot of prints in separate packages, which close us a ton of extra money that wasn't budgeted for.
The other reason is that there shouldn't be any reason to wait. I can get these delivered in about a week, rather than the 9+ months it'll take me to ship the book. So why wait.
I've got prints of Raziel and others available for purchase right now, exclusively for backers through a secret link that you can find in this update: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1680814846/angelarium-book-of-watchers/posts/1619018