I wanted this image to be more airy and illustrative, a bit of a departure from the rest of the artwork since the song has quite a different tone than the rest of the album. Here goes:
This is the first thumbnail I came up with. I tried some other things (it's always good to explore your options) but, as often happens, the first thing that comes to mind has the most potential.
I decided to tilt the viewpoint and changed the man to a bird, in order to work in the bird from the artwork from the original version, but making the tone of the illustration match the spare, atmospheric feel of the acoustic version.
The final tonal sketch.
I've cleaned up the drawing and started to work on the texture of the background, overlaying different values with a splatter brush I made in Photoshop.
Next I fill in the solid shapes of the trees and shadows, keeping in mind the values in my tonal sketch.
I give the trees some texture with the splatter brush, then mask off areas and add lighter values for the highlights.
Finally, I add a little more atmospheric light to push the background back, and give it the same yellow cast as the rest of the images.
So that's that... now move it along to Dogs of Winter dot com for your free song!