Titannica

Stylised self-portrait from BattleCards (US)

Peter Andrew Jones is an artist known for his extensive work within the Science Fiction and Fantasy genres, and best known within the world of Fighting Fantasy for being responsible for the original cover of the very first book, The Warlock of Firetop Mountain.

Biography[]

Early Life[]

He was born in the 1950s in Islington, North London.[1] As a child his real passion was in aviation and space technology, and he spent many hours drawing fighter aircraft from RAF Leuchars on the coast of Scotland. This led him to a desire to paint aircraft. At school, his art tutor, Robert Spearman, guided him towards applying for and gaining a place at the prestigious St Martin's School of Art where he was to train as a graphic designer[2]. Whilst there he became fascinated with the tales of Larry Niven and Isaac Asimov[3]. A visiting lecturer, Fritz Wagner, suggested he fuse his love of a realistic style of illustration with his imaginative skills. It was the taking up of this suggestion that led him into the world of Science Fiction Art and established his unique style with strong central images and characters set in a fantastical landscape.[3]

Career[]

Very early in his career he developed his own style of Science Fiction illustration, characterised by strong central characters set in other-worldly landscapes. Jones set up his own enterprise, the Solar Wind studio, to commercially develop this style and his name was made when, in 1982, he submitted his design for a cover to the first Fighting Fantasy gamebook, The Warlock of Firetop Mountain. The illustration not only took up the front cover but was a complete wraparound style, covering both the spine and back cover as well. But what made it stand out was that it went against the conformity of the time, by leaving no space at the top of the cover for the title, but rather it left the space in the centre of the illustration. Puffin Books accepted the design, however, and the book was a multi-million seller.

Bibliography[]

Cover Illustrator

Fighting Fantasy Gamebooks[]

Other Fighting Fantasy[]

Warlock Magazine[]

Interior Illustrator

Fighting Fantasy Gamebooks[]

  • (#4) Starship Traveller

Other Fighting Fantasy[]

  1. Features his cover artwork from the second cover of The Warlock of Firetop Mountain and Talisman of Death.

BattleCards[]

Jones was also one of the artists who worked on Steve Jackson's BattleCards (published by Merlin Publishing in 1993). All seven main artists had cards dedicated to them featuring a mini-biography but written in the style of mythic fantasy. Also, the artists themselves drew self portraits. In Jones' case it was a vampire like creature sitting in a cross legged pose against a surreal outer space background. This card was number 4 in the US set, and number 98 in the UK set. Notably one of the cards he was responsible for was the near mythical final card, the Emperor of Vangoria:

BattleCards by Peter Andrew Jones
US Edition UK Edition
US No. US Name UK No. UK Name
4 Peter Andrew Jones 98 Peter Andrew Jones
80 Aragon Trueblade 50 Aragon Trueblade
81 Forrin Weatherstorm 10 Forrin Weatherstorm
82 Baagan the Brave 36 Baagan the Brave
83 The Bowmaster 58 The Bowmaster
84 Sylvanne 69 Sylvanne
85 The Red Knight 144 The Red Knight
86 Zittonian Swordsman 72 Zittonian Swordsman
87 Zheena Nightshade 3 Zheena Nightshade
88 Venga the Grim 116 Venga the Grim
89 Karanga the Ferocious 31 Karanga the Ferocious
90 Horo Soga 92 Horo Soga
91 Horo Matangi 102 Horo Matangi
92 Gargantuan Marauder 41 Gargantuan Marauder
93 Gleeta Spee 121 Gleeta Spee
94 Sisters of Damnation 146 The Sisters of Damnation
95 Jorramungha 24 Jorramungha
96 The Demon of Eelsea 80 Demon of Eelsea
97 The Angel of Death 6 The Angel of Death
98 Ironscale 127 Ironscale
99 Jahnu the Hunter 43 Jahnu the Hunter
100 Maglan Vinn1 67 Maglan Vinn1
140 Emperor of Vangoria 150 Emperor of Vangoria


  1. The Maglan Vinn card specified that the artist was Unknown. This was to facilitate a quest (Lord Magnoble's Quest), where the player had to find the five cards whose artist was identified by a question mark ("?"), rather than by name, and having found these cards, identify who the artist was. In the case of this card, it was Peter Andrew Jones.

Outside of Fighting Fantasy[]

Following on from The Warlock of Firetop Mountain has been a career that has seen his art grace the work of such major authors as:

Television[]

He has also been involved in television including the following programmes:

Passion for Aircraft[]

Jones' childhood love of aircraft stayed with him and in 1990, around the time of the 50th anniversary of the Battle of Britain he looked to indulge this passion once again, but professionally. He became involved with the RAF Benevolent Fund and a number of World War II pilots including Group Captain Peter Townsend (GC) and General Adolf Galland (General of Fighters, Luftwaffe. WWII). As a result, his works can be found on various aviation related publications. Amongst those who have acknowledged his work are President George Bush (Snr) (a former W.W.II US Pacific theatre pilot).

Critical Acclaim[]

Amongst Jones' most notable critical accolades are that he was once described by Octopus Books as "The most successful (SF) artist working in Britain today" and by Forbidden Planet Bookshop (London & New York) as "The man who created the (SF) genre."

Personal Life[]

Peter Andrew Jones is married to Deborah and now lives in Church Stretton in Shropshire, England where he has been able to indulge an enthusiasm for art associated with wildlife.

See Also[]

External Links[]

References[]