September 21, 2009

Variation on a sketch

Just a variation on yesterday's sketch - the little guy's looking more skyward now, into the future (which is full of possibilities!).

September 20, 2009

Another sketch...

Here's another sketch for the Illustrators Workshop - I've combined aspects from a couple of earlier sketches...

September 17, 2009

Southern Breeze Illustrators Workshop sketches

These are some of the concept sketches I've created for the Southern Breeze Illustrators Workshop based on the theme "It's All About YOU!" My concept is a kind of metaphorical self-portrait idea: I've really been feeling lately that my experience of pursuing a career as an illustrator is like an epic quest. I'm on this journey, and I'm carrying with me the "tools of the trade" and the artistic and literary influences that have made such an impact on me.

September 16, 2009

Busy, busy, busy...

Good grief! There's so much going on right now, and I haven't had a solid block of time to comment on any of it lately here on the ol' blog. So here's quick look at the latest:

  • I've been painting steadily on my Jeremy Thatcher mock book cover. There's a lot going on in the composition, and it'll take some time to finish. Plus, I'm really attached to the piece, so I want to do the best I can!
  • I've started working on my ideas for the Southern Breeze Illustrators Workshop piece based on the workshop theme, "It's All About YOU!". The experience so far has been great - challenging, but great. The first 25 of us to sign up for the workshop were given the opportunity to have one-on-one consultation with illustrator Mark Braught throughout the process of creating the illustration. Read more about the workshop here.
  • And finally, last weekend was the Decatur Book Festival - holy cow, what an event!!! Lots more to report about that when I've got more time.

Hope this is just enough to keep ya satisfied till I can give more details!

September 2, 2009

Jeremy Thatcher, Dragon Hatcher

My absolute favorite kids' book of all time is Jeremy Thatcher, Dragon Hatcher by the incredibly talented Bruce Coville. If you've never read it before, I highly recommend that you take some time and read this great story. I love it for several reasons: the creative storyline and general concept, of course; the fantasy element; the illustrations; and the personal connection I have with the main character (a boy named Jeremy who loves to draw).

There have been several cover designs created for the book since its first publication in 1991 (I was 10 years old then!). This is the original I remember buying at a Scholastic book fair...

Then there's Tony Diterlizzi's interpretation (and a very good one, I have to say)...

So when I was trying to decide on my next illustration project, I figured what better to do than to create my own jacket cover design. I can definitely say I've been really happy working on ideas for this one. This book has a special place in my life, and I really wanna do it justice! Here's the basic inked design...

Jeremy's there in the middle holding the dragon egg. Hyacinth Priest is shelving books on the left, and on the right, Mr. Elives is looking down from behind the counter in his magic shop. Tiamat soars overhead by moonlight. Stay tuned for the final painting in color!