This year I decided was going to be the year I wrote a book. Not a how to or recipe book, oh no, I want to write a children’s book! I have a jumble of story ideas in my head, many to do with the critters that call this place home. And while I am great at taking pictures of those animals, I haven’t really made any “art” since high school, and that my friends, was a looooong time ago!
Of course the important part of a children’s book, other then a good story, is the illustrations. I know when I read to my children, the pictures matter. They can either draw the reader’s eye in or just fall flat. I don’t want my children’s book (if I do get it done) to fall flat in the art department.
Oh, I know, if you write a great story publishers will hook you up with a fantastic artist to illustrate your book. But let’s be honest, at this rate, I don’t even know any publishers…… So I figure I better be able to illustrate my own story. We will worry about the whole “actually getting it published” thing when I actually get the book written and illustrated!
I was so excited when a friend of mine pointed me to the 52 Week Illustration Challenge. There is also a group for this page where everyone shares their work and encourages each other. Let me tell you I was scared beyond belief when I posted my work the first week, but even the totally mind blowing, amazing artists there were friendly and supportive of a new comer.
Now I know I am no rock star. Heck for Week 1: Whimsy, I was using the country kids’ colored pencils to make my drawing. But I think Mr. Bill sporting a tie turned out very cute.
Week 2: Feathered Friends, I decided to try to be a Ms. Fancy Pants, like those amazing artists that where sharing and I turned to a computer drawing program to make my piece. I will admit, it looks a lot more professional and clean….. but it wasn’t very fun to make. Seriously, I preferred the pencils.
So for Week 3: Australiana, I went back to those chewed on colored penciles. There is just something about moving a pencil that is so much more relaxing to me then moving a computer mouse. I liked my concept, but again, the execution failed to thrill my eyes. I was falling flat. *sigh* Not to mention, it was pointed out to me that Kiwis are from New Zeeland, NOT Australia. Oops!
We are now into Week 4: Ode to favorite children’s book. I loved reading The Guruffalo to the oldest country kid when he was little, and since we are the homesteading type, I decided to put a little twist on the cover of the book. Instead of the Gruffalo and mouse, I went with the horned (and fanged) Duckuffalo going after a worm. This is my favorite drawing so far! So much so, I didn’t want to mess it up with those darn colored pencils!
So what’s a girl to do? I ordered some illustrating markers! I can’t wait for them to arrive because I so want to add color to this. I think with the right tools, I might just be able to actually make a decent looking finished product. I really hope my markers come very soon, because the next few weeks the themes just beg for beautiful color. I mean how can I draw a peacock or a garden without them!
Now if you will excuse me, I’m going to go stare out the window for the mail lady…….