Les has worked in many fields and areas but is best known for the huge number of book jackets he has produced in the Fantasy, Science Fiction and Horror genres; the latter sometimes being known as his "Red Period". After studying at the famous, not to say notorious, Hornsey College of Art from 1968 to 1972, where he was firmly advised that he would never be an illustrator, he was recruited by the Young Artists Agency, and has been working as an illustrator ever since. He is now represented by Val Edwards. His work has included major advertising campaigns, movie posters for films including John Carpenter's The Thing and Clive Barker's Nightbreed and he has worked in film production and gaming. He has illustrated two graphic novels based on stories by Clive Barker; Son of Celluloid, about an ambulatory cancer, and Rawhead Rex, which tells of the adventures of a baby-eating monster and has absolutely no connection to his own views on children. Both books were critically acclaimed. He is a seven time recipient of the British Fantasy Award for Best Artist, has been nominated for a World Fantasy Award five times, winning the award in 2008, and for a Chesley Award on five occasions. He has been a Guest of Honour at a World Science Fiction Convention and several other conventions. An enthusiastic member of the British Fantasy Society, he may often be found reclining gracefully under a table at one of their many functions. In recent years Les has taken to painting under the pseudonym "Edward Miller" in order to do a different kind of work and use a more romantic style. A separate website of Edward Miller work can be found at www.edwardmiller.co.uk. When he is not chained to his easel, his spare time is taken up with half building plastic model kits and allowing them to gather dust in an appropriately artistic fashion, playing the guitar in a uniquely unmusical manner, and fencing, a sport at which his enthusiasm is surpassed only by his almost supernatural lack of ability. Proof of his outstanding abilities in the field of art can be best seen at his website www.lesedwards.com, which includes a great gallery and webshop and free downoads of backgrounds for your desktop! Les and his lovely wife Val live in Ilford in Essex, England.

Les Edwards became a Pern Art celebrity instantly after the worldwide release of Anne McCaffrey's The Skies of Pern. The art shows bronzerider F'lessan of Honshu Weyrhold, son of F'lar and Lessa of Benden, on Golanth during the tsunami rescue at Sunrise Cliff Seahold on the Southern Continent. The art was also used for the US, Polish and Russian editions of the book. Little did Anne know when she wrote about how devastating a tsunami can be in 2001 that the world would be shocked by the gruesome reality of hundreds of thousands of tsunami victims only three years later in southeast Asia.
Les writes about this cover: "If someone offers you the job of painting the cover of an Anne McCaffrey book you don’t really say no. I was pleased with the sense of drama and the author was very complimentary about it."

The original artwork is sold.
Original medium: oils on board
© Copyright 2000 Les Edwards, all rights reserved.

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Les was commissioned by the British publisher Transworld, who publishes both the Bantam Press Pern hardcovers and the Corgi paperbacks, to do new covers for a few existing titles of the Pern books: Dragonsong, Dragonsinger and The White Dragon. New art for Dragondrums didn't appear. Here is the artwork for the cover of Dragonsong, the first volume in the Harper Hall Trilogy.

The original artwork is sold.
Original medium: oils on board
© Copyright 2001 Les Edwards, all rights reserved.

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This was what Les made for the new Corgi cover of Dragonsinger, the second volume in the Harper Hall Trilogy.

The original artwork is sold.
Original medium: oils on board
© Copyright 2001 Les Edwards, all rights reserved.

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This is Les Edwards' take on the third volume in the original Dragonriders of Pern trilogy, the 22nd and later UK paperback printings of The White Dragon.

The original artwork is sold.
Original medium: oils on board
© Copyright 2001 Les Edwards, all rights reserved.

To order prints of this artwork click here


Les also did the art for the cover of the first co-written Pern book by Anne and her son Todd McCaffrey: Dragon's Kin. It is the book that starts the adventures of Kindan and Third Pass Pern. It is surprising how much alike the UK and US covert art is, the last having been done by Paul Youll. Both depict a Hatching dragon or maybe a watchwher, the species that plays such an important role in Todd McCaffrey's Pern books and provides us with a totally new look on Pern and fighting Thread.

The image is cropped because there is a lot of empty space on the left hand side.

The original artwork is sold and in possession of a dedicated Pern fan.
Original medium: oils on board
© Copyright 2003 Les Edwards, all rights reserved.

To order prints of this artwork click here


Todd McCaffrey's first solo-written Pern novel, Dragonsblood, is graced by a Les Edwards cover on both the UK and US editions. It is one of my personal favourites and used, with permission, for some of my digital fanart Pernese Times (see fan art > digital art > Boom, Hans van der). It is also used on the German (paperback) edition of the book and on two USA audio editions.

Les says about this work: "This idea came to me quite quickly and the art director let me run with it. Although there's a lot of work in it, it's still a simple image, which adds to the drama".

The original artwork is sold.
Original medium: oils on board
© Copyright 2005 Les Edwards, all rights reserved.

To order prints of this artwork click here

This is one of my alltime favourite Pern covers and below I will also put up the prelim sketch for this cover art. I actually liked this art so much that, when my bank gave me the opportunity to desgn my own debit card I used this art for it. The actual debit card can be seen below right.



The artwork for the cover of the UK edition of Dragon's Fire, in which we more or less resume the adventures of the Pern miners and of young Harper Kindan and his friends.

Les himself says about this work: "I started out with the idea of making this look like a WWII dogfight but the dragons just wouldn't stay in formation!"

The original artwork is sold.
Original medium: oils on board
© Copyright 2005 Les Edwards, all rights reserved.

To order prints of this artwork click here

For this artwork two prelim's were made, the first of which was not used for the definite artwork. Both sketches are pictured below.



I guess this work shows an Igen Weyr bronze dragon dropping the so very much needed goods and food near Fort Hold whose inhabitants are being ravished by the plague. It was an undertaking reminiscent of operation "Manna" carried out over starving Holland in the winter of 1944, by then still occupied by the Germans and waiting to be liberated in May 1945.

Les says about this work: "In this illustration for the latest Pern novel I've made a few alterations to the dragon based on comments from Todd McCaffrey and several Pern fans. Can you see what they are yet?".

The original artwork is for sale.
Original medium: oils on board
© Copyright 2007 Les Edwards, all rights reserved.

To order prints of this artwork click here


A very unusual piece of Pern art, showing us cultvated fields and what surely must be a mating flight (a bronze and a gold without riders...). The art was made for the UK edition of Todd McCaffrey's second solo Pern novel Dragonheart, in which we follow the dragonriders from Fort Weyr at the start of the Third Pass.

Les says about this work: "This was commissioned by the US publisher and consequently used on the UK edition. I think it has a slightly different, more decorative feel to some of the previous Pern covers that I've painted, due in part to the arrangement of the dragons. I'm not sure if this is an accident or is because of a difference in approach between UK and US Art Directors."

The original artwork is for sale.
Original medium: oils on board
© Copyright 2008 Les Edwards, all rights reserved.

To order prints of this artwork click here


Sometimes Les also puts prelims up on his wonderfu website. And in this case he put up two. About the first one (above left), which was not used, he says: "This was the first sketch for the cover of the Todd McCaffrey book commissioned by Del Rey (Random House). The Art Director wanted an image that showed the dragons intertwined and suggesting a mating ritual. This was my first attempt and in many ways I prefer it to the later one, purely in terms of composition. However I was asked to rework it and in retrospect I can see that these dragons might be seen as aggressive. Mind you, whoever said that the mating ritual of dragons would be a calm affair?"

This work was done for the cover for an omnibus of two books in Anne McCaffrey’s Pern series (Dragonsdawn and The Chronicles of Pern: First Fall). The artwork was commissioned and published by The Science Fiction Book Club in the USA.

Les says: "The publisher gave me a completely free hand with this as long, of course, that it showed a dragon. As it does not illustrate any particular story, I just tried to make it as dramatic as possible."

The original artwork is sold.
Original medium: oils on board
© Copyright 2008 Les Edwards, all rights reserved.

To order prints of this artwork click here


Copyright

Original cover art is shown here with no intention to violate the copyright, or any other right, of the original artist and in recompense we try to promote the artist and link back to his or her webpages and webshops if possible. Should anyone whose work is depicted on these Pern Museum Pages have any objection to seeing his works of art promoted here, a simple email will suffice to make your wishes known and we will act accordingly.