Wednesday, December 11, 2013
Thursday, November 21, 2013
I'm excited to announce that a book I worked on earlier this year has just come out! Camp Secret, by Kathryn Dennis and Melissa Mahle (who, by the way, no big deal, is a former CIA intelligence agent), is a middle grade novel that follows four kids as they discover that their summer camp is really a training ground for junior spies. It's a really fun read, and you can read the first chapter here, or learn more about the book and the authors at their website.
Monday, November 18, 2013
Tuesday, October 29, 2013
Thursday, October 17, 2013
Monday, October 07, 2013
Friday, October 04, 2013
Monday, September 23, 2013
Tuesday, September 17, 2013
Thursday, September 12, 2013
Thursday, August 29, 2013
Let me just say that I started out intending to draw a perfectly nice Arctic fox with starry sky scene, and then somewhere along the way a ptarmigan bit the dust. But you know, foxes have to eat too. Even adorable Arctic foxes.
Thursday, August 22, 2013
Tuesday, August 06, 2013
Tuesday, July 30, 2013
Monday, July 29, 2013
Monday, July 22, 2013
Here's a thumbnail template for a standard 32 page picture book with separate, solid color endpapers.
For the 40 page template with illustrated endpapers, see here: http://artghost.blogspot.com/2013/07/40-page-self-ended-picture-book.html
And, for more information about picture book layouts, I recommend this post by Tara Lazar: http://taralazar.com/2009/02/22/picture-book-construction-know-your-layout/
Wednesday, July 10, 2013
The title pretty much says it all, but here's a little blank template for thumbnailing a 40 page self ended picture book. A 40 page self ended book has page 1 and 40 glued down to the boards on the front and back of the book, and pages 2 - 3 and 38 - 39 are illustrated endpapers. Anyhow, doing thumbnail sketches can be a very handy way to plan out a picture book dummy.
Friday, June 28, 2013
Tuesday, June 18, 2013
Here's a continuation of my faux book cover project with hand lettered type.
So, apparently the whole "May you live in interesting times" Chinese curse is actually probably not really Chinese. I can still see this as a book title though.
This started out as a hot press watercolor paper test and then I thought I might as well do something with all that empty space. The dragon and the lettering is digital.
And here it is without the lettering:
Wednesday, June 12, 2013
I've been really into drawing books lately. I guess I figure a book always makes a scene more interesting. Because, you know, books!
And if you don't like books, well, who doesn't love a Regency-era lady?
Wednesday, June 05, 2013
Saturday, June 01, 2013
Daughter of Xanadu by Dori Jones Yang and it inspired me to draw a (pseudo-Mongolian) archer. Many inaccuracies abound in this little drawing, so don't judge me too harshly (all you Mongolian scholars and archery buffs that are reading this blog).
Friday, May 24, 2013
Thursday, May 23, 2013
Wednesday, May 22, 2013
I kept some of the ink work from the original (albeit manipulated in Photoshop), changed the coloring, cleaned up the line work, re-painted Alice digitally, and cropped it.
In the intervening years, I got a heck of a lot better at drawing and figured out how to use Photoshop much more effectively. (Draw every day. Seriously. It works.) Also I became obsessed with drawing hair. Having a Cintiq tablet also makes a huge difference in the ease of creating digitally (I HIGHLY recommend getting one. I love mine, totally worth it.)
She needs a bit of tweaking still, but I'm happy overall with the redo. I wonder how much my style will change over the next 7 years.
The old piece:
Wednesday, May 15, 2013
Today I'm happy to feature Erika Barriga, whose new book, Queen Quail is Quiet: and Other ABC Tongue Twisters, comes out today! Her illustrations are truly delightful, and she was kind enough to stop by and share a bit of her process.
Queen Quail is Quiet: and other ABC Tongue Twisters came out today for e-readers for Kindle and in print! Queen Quail is Quiet grew out of my love of learning and drawing. I wanted to be a little different to approaching learning the alphabet. Creating a sentence illustrating each sound for every letter sounded challenging. I started out by thinking of words for the letters and then forming a sentence I could illustrate. Sketching of thumbnail ideas came next and was much easier to do once I realized this would no longer be just a project, but a book. Most of the sketching was just on plain computer paper and once I refined the sketches into final artwork, I scanned in the images onto my computer.
The sketches were brought over to Adobe Illustrator as a layer. Then I outlined everything in a bright color (easy to see and stands out) on another layer. At this stage I think of colors and what would work for the entire book.
Then I made a copy of the outline layer and this is the layer that becomes the color layer.
Usually there is tweaking with the image just a bit (the swim cap for the duck is different from sketch to final), but I try to stay true to the original sketch since that is the foundation. I believe it is better to sketch and erase than to work out those changes digitally on the computer. When the color is complete, I'll bring the image into Photoshop for additional little changes and finally end with applying a texture.
This book took over four years to complete from start to finish and I can't wait for my baby girl to flip through the pages. I hope other kids will enjoy it too!