There’s a dramatic story behind the cover art for this issue. Graphic designer Rosalind Stevenson takes us behind the scenes:
It was the perfect online find – striking contemporary art, a still-life that might have been designed for the cover of our spring issue, The Welcome Table. On a rough-hewn table, a simple meal is laid out: home-baked bread, cheese wedges, and stained corks indicating the presence of red wine. We liked it because it hints at the Last Supper without being too literal.
But we were running out of time to finalize our cover, and I couldn’t seem to connect with the artist, Michael Naples, over the usual channels. The email address had bounced, and galleries which had displayed his work couldn’t provide me with further contact information. I left a comment on his latest Instagram post, and was relieved when he got back to me right away. He said he would be happy to give us permission to use the image, but that unfortunately he had lost all his high-resolution files from before 2015 to a computer crash. Without missing a beat, he told me that if I gave him a few days, he could replicate it for me. At first I thought he meant that he could retrieve the file. But when he asked me if I wanted it square, like the original, I realized that he meant to paint it from scratch! He didn’t hesitate to offer, nor did he mention additional payment. (Don’t worry; we did.) He started work the same evening. I sent him the dimensions we wanted, and his new painting was even better suited to our cover than the original. Thank you, Michael Naples, for the perfect piece of art – just in time.