I mentioned before that I was attempting to illustrate a book that was completely different from any kind of thing I had done before. There was to be NO pink cupcakes and NO pink rabbits and definitely NO glitter! The story is about a father and his son who live in a normal house in London. There was no room for any swirly twirly houses made from sweets or Victoria Stitch-ness.
This was fine. I saw it as fine because the whole idea was to experiment and to stretch myself. I didn't want to feel too attached to the story so that I wouldn't mind making loads of mistakes and in a way not caring so much about the outcome.
And you know what, I think I have learnt more about illustrating in these last six weeks than I have in a whole year! When I look back at the first drawings I did for this project just over six weeks ago I can see how much I have improved and how much freer my work has become. And yes I've missed the glitter and I don't really feel passionate about the story at all but I'm hoping I will be able to apply some of the things I've discovered to future work.
The first hurdle to overcome was drawing children. I want to be a children's book illustrator but I realised that I never actually draw children! I don't particularly enjoy drawing children if I'm completely honest, I find adult characters much more interesting. But anyway, I had to do it. I tried many many versions of the little boy, I filled up five sketchbooks with character designs. I still feel like he could be improved.
And THEN I had the dad to draw! I found this a bit easier because someone on my course kindly offered to model for me and as he has a very distinct look, it was a lot easier to translate that onto paper. And more fun! I used to whole painting with wash and then outlining over the top method for a lot of these again.
So now I basically have five books full of character design! Just gotta choose which ones to use now.
And here's a few more concept ideas/sketches for pages in the book:
School playground scene:
In other news it was both mine and Henry's birthday at the beginning of march so there were a lot of festivities going on. I made Henry this Zelda cake.