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Results 2,576 - 2,600 of 146,178
2576. Mike Nichols, RIP

Celebrated stage and film director Mike Nichols ("Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?," "The Graduate) died yesterday at the age of 83.

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2577. Trippin'

At the moment, I am using a canson sketchbook. I often use Moleskine books, because of their wonderful quality, and because they are easy to find here in the Netherlands. 
But every now and then, I want an extra challenge, and when I find new sketchbooks that look and feel right, I buy and try them. 
In fact, when I was in New York a few weeks ago, I visited 3(!) art supply shops and came back to Amsterdam with a huge stack of sketchbooks, so I have a supply for quite a lot of months to come.

Back to my Canson sketchbook. I'm not too fond of it. The paper is a bit too thin, so watercolorus make the pages wrinkle. I don't mind that really, but somehow, the book and I haven't become the best of friends, even though often, when I try a new book, it takes a few pages of getting used to each other. this one: not so much. Maybe it's also because I've been in a rollercoaster of things happening in my life, and many pages in this sketchbook are filled with half-hearted drawings or hasty sketches. Which is a shame. 
On the other hand, it's a reflection of my state of mind as well...
And then there is this unwritten rule I keep: I need to fill a sketchbook before I start a new one. So I keep on going, taking the challenge.

Anyway, this drawing here, is my favorite drawing in this sketchbook so far.
It was in Switzerland. We (my husband, his cousin, and I) had a few hours drive from Bern to Davos. Road trippin'!
I requested to sit in the back ("are you sure?"), so I could retreat a little to do some work on my laptop without being anti-social, with a rewarding amount of time left, to make a drawing of my travel companions. Glad I don't get car sick! Lucky me.
 Done with a brown fineliner and a pentel brown ink brushpen.



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2578. John Rocco's BLIZZARD - Interview and Giveaway!


John Rocco has a new book out called BLIZZARD - a mostly light book because of all the snow. It’s a wonderful follow-up to his Caldecott honor-winning, mostly dark book, BLACKOUT, which I also adored and talked to John about HERE. In BLIZZARD, John relays a story from his own childhood when forty inches of snow buried Rhode Island back in 1978. I can so relate to this story because of my own similar experience… an ice-storm in Georgia in the 70s that left me and my family sleeping by the fireplace where we cooked our food, boiled our water, and kept warm for days before things got back to normal. So, I’m thrilled to have John back to talk about his latest picture book...

Q. Hi John, You’ve done it again! You’ve taken a quiet little moment of life and made it big and beautiful - congratulations!
A.
Thanks so much Elizabeth! I think the quiet moments are the most interesting.

Q. Truly, you’re creating a niche of pulling those odd little moments from life, a blackout, a snowstorm, and turning them into something magical. How do these stories develop for you?
A.
Well, with Blackout, the story was developed through interviewing many people in Brooklyn and New York City about their individual experiences during the blackout of 2003. What was interesting to me were how many of them had similar experiences, and that became the thrust of the book. Blizzard on the other hand had developed from my daughter continually asking for stories about my childhood. This was one of them. This book is almost a diary of that week when I was little. When I told my father about the new book I was working on, he shipped me all the newspapers from that week in 1978. He had actually saved them!

Q. I love the contrast of the dark book versus the light book. Was that intentional?
A.
Well, I guess I could have called it WHITEOUT, but I like the fact that they both begin with B. But yes, almost everything is intentional in my books. The things that aren't are usually the best. You know, those happy accidents? I do think they make a nice pairing for story time though. In Blackout, the main character goes through an emotional arc, from being bored, to scared, to curious, to surprised and happy. I tried to use color, and the lack thereof, to help amplify his emotions. With Blizzard I was dealing with an event that most adults at the time did not find fun at all. In fact, it was a pretty big ordeal. But us kids thought it was fantastic and magical and…and…THERE WAS NO SCHOOL FOR A WEEK!

Q. I’m sure the lighting in BLACKOUT was a challenge. Were there any particular lighting challenges in BLIZZARD?
A.
The biggest challenge for me with Blizzard was to figure out where and when to let the white of the paper feel like the snow, and where to use watercolor washes to indicate some atmosphere. I think finding that balance was the most difficult.

Q. Was it truly you who made the trek through the neighborhood on snow shoes fashioned out of tennis rackets to get to the store and purchase emergency supplies?
A.
Yes, it was. In fact I remember that my sisters racket was a white Christ Evert model, and mine was a light blue Bjorn Borg model. Recently, at a book signing in my old home town, the woman who owned that store with her husband came by and said hello. It was surreal. I screamed out, "I JUST PAINTED OF PICTURE OF YOU!" The one big change I had made was that when the snowplows finally came it wasn't hot chocolate everyone was drinking in the street, it was whiskey. My father had told me that when the snowplows finally started up our road, our next door neighbor ran out and planted a bottle of whiskey in the snow. They stopped the plow and everyone came out for a toast.

Q. What was your fondest memory from that time?
A.
I think building all the snow forts and tunnels in our front yard. My sister and I were like gophers, digging through that snow.

Q. Did working on this book bring up old memories for you? How was it to work with that?
A.
It's interesting you ask that. My parents separated when I was about 18. My sister and father both moved to California shortly after that. So now, almost thirty years later, I re-created the world where we were all together again. Drawing all the details of our living room; the wood stove, the conch shell on the mantle, the Andrew Wyeth print on the wall, my mom's rocker, my dad's chair…it's all there. It was strange and fun and a little emotional for me.

Q. I know you’ve shared before, but for my readers who don’t know, can you share your illustration method?
A.
First I create a tonal drawing, and then I scan it into the computer and color using a combination of digital paint and water color washes and textures that I bring in as well.

Q. We’re heading into the snowy season. Any words of wisdom to those who might have a similar experience?
A.
Most importantly, I would say, stay safe and enjoy the time you get to spend with your family.

Q. Thanks and I wish you much continued success, John!
A.
Thanks Elizabeth!!
Here I am with John (far right) at the Southern Festival of Books in Nashville this past October:


Check out this great book trailer for BLIZZARD! (The link will take you to Vimeo.)



GIVEAWAY!
Disney has kindly agreed to give a free copy of BLIZZARD to one of my lucky followers. Must live in the US/Canada to win - enter below.

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2579. Agent Looking to Build List

CSLOGO

Lana Popovic

lana-popovic-literary-agent

Lana Popovic

Lana Popovic holds a B.A. with honors from Yale University, a J.D. from the Boston University School of Law, where she focused on intellectual property, and an M.A. with highest honors from the Emerson College Publishing and Writing program. Prior to joining Chalberg & Sussman, Lana worked at Zachary Shuster Harmsworth, where she built a list of Young Adult and adult literary authors while managing foreign rights for the agency.

Lana’s clients include Leah Thomas (Because You’ll Never Meet Me, forthcoming from Bloomsbury), Rebecca Podos (The Mystery of Hollow Places, forthcoming from Balzer + Bray/HarperCollins), Michelle Smith (Play On, forthcoming from Spencer Hill Contemporary), and Marie Jaskulka (The Lost Marble Notebook of Forgotten Girl and Random Boy, forthcoming from Skyhorse).

With an abiding love for dark themes and shamelessly nerdy fare—Battlestar Galactica and Joss Whedon are two of her great loves—Lana is looking for a broad spectrum of Young Adult and Middle Grade projects, from contemporary realism to speculative fiction, fantasy, horror, and sci-fi. For the adult market, Lana is interested in literary thrillers, horror, fantasy, sophisticated erotica and romance, and select nonfiction. An avid traveler, she has a particular fondness for stories set in Eastern Europe, the Middle East, North Africa, and Asia, although she also loves reading about American subcultures.

Lana is accepting:

  1. Young Adult/Middle Grade Fiction: Contemporary/realistic, mysteries, thrillers, fantasy, historical, horror, sci-fi
  2. Adult Fiction: Literary thrillers, sci-fi, horror, romance, erotica, women’s literary fiction
  3. Adult Nonfiction: Pop culture, blog-to-book, literary memoir

Twitter at @LanaPopovicLit.

To query Lana, please email lana@chalbergsussman.com with the first ten pages of the manuscript included in the body of the email. Lana accepts queries by email only.

Talk tomorrow,

Kathy


Filed under: Agent, Editor & Agent Info, inspiration, opportunity, Places to Submit Tagged: Boston University School of Law, Chalberg & Sussman, Lana Popovic, Yale University

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2580. Grayed CMY Experiment


Here's a color experiment that I tried a couple of days ago.

I set up for an outdoor gouache painting in Laguna Beach, California. I limited the colors to intense versions of cyan, yellow, and magenta, plus white.

I picked the most highly saturated or high-chroma versions of them that I had: Holbein Prussian blue [PB 27] (I could have used phthalo blue if I had brought it), Winsor and Newton lemon yellow (I could also have used Cadmium Yellow Light), and Holbein Carmine red (Naphthol), plus Caran d'Ache white.

Using these ingredients, I tried to paint a grayed-down painting out of them. I didn't want to allow any bright colors in the final image.


What a fun and strange feeling that was, like trying to drive a racing car in bumper-to-bumper traffic. Just touch the accelerator and it wants to blast off. Each of those colors has so much firepower, but I had to put on the brakes at every stage by restraining each color by using the other two as a complement.

No matter how hard I tried to achieve quiet, neutral colors, one of those strong colors wanted to dominate.

This challenge is the reverse of starting with a limited palette of pigments and trying to stretch those colors to be as pure as possible, such as in the painting above, which used a limited palette of weak colors: raw sienna, Venetian red, cobalt blue, and titanium white.

For more about limited palette experiments, see previous post on Limited Palettes.

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2581. Flight School The Musical!

Fight School The Musical! If only I could go back in time and tell my little girl self when I was going to school in a small logging town -- that someday I'd have a book getting adapted into an off-Broadway musical for a children's theater in New York City! What miracles may come when you choose to believe in dreams! Thank you Vital Theatre for making Flight School The Musical a reality.

Flight School the Musical

The post Flight School The Musical! appeared first on Lita Judge.

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2582. This Week’s Featured Card: P is for Fairy Path

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P is for Fairy Path.

This card can have many meanings for you when you see it, so always trust your guidance. There is one lesson associated with this card I’d like to share that demonstrates the negative and positive aspects of this card.

Everyone has a path unique to themselves. If something isn’t on your path, or you try to walk in the footsteps of someone else’s path, it won’t work. I saw this lesson recently in my own life.

I’m thick. Sometimes I need a cosmic two-by-four to bop me in the head to pay attention to what I need to know. I often experience the lesson over and over until I “get it.”

When I lost my part time gig marketing because of the economy, I really muddled around. I went the logical route and followed family advice to go after what was most lucrative. I learned quickly what doesn’t work for me. I had one nightmare situation after another as I desperately chased after the money I needed vs. where my heart wanted to go. On hindsight, I was probably using or offering skills that aren’t my best. I can honestly say that I even went into a fog where I forgot completely what my path was. I had to ask my friends what was it I loved to do, as if a giant cloud took over my focus and my memories.

I had one job offer that was such a bad fit that I felt ill even thinking about it. But here I was, in a time period when my school wasn’t running yet (it was late summer), my deck wasn’t released, and I had lost my pt job. I was desperate. I had to make a decision and fast, but every time I thought about this job, I either had a back ache, stomach ache or rashes. Many friends around me insisted this was my one choice, but then several looked at me, and knew, this was not a job that was on my path. It didn’t fit my sensitive personality, even a little bit. I’d probably last through a few days of training before messing up or needing to be on migraine medicine.

Things did improve but it was one dark period trusting myself to get back on path. I knew I loved teaching, writing and creating products that teach. It was my heart path. I joined an online Facebook group with the fabulous Fabeku, who teaches you to find your Superpower. I knew mine, I just had to believe in it again, and believe I had a right to pursue it.

I had another interview that makes me chuckle right now. It was for a retail clothing store job. The interviewer barely looked at my resume and forgot my name (never a good sign). She didn’t care about my special skills or superpowers, she wanted to know if I could run a cash register and climb a ladder. There’s this inventory closet that is loaded with clothes and boxes and each day you would climb this ladder and check the boxes on a far shelf. Now I hate climbing ladders and heights, but I told her not a problem. But the issue was my height. Even with the ladder, I probably couldn’t reach those boxes, and she managed to point that out. I am pretty sure I didn’t get that job because of that one fact. I walked out feeling ashamed and not happy who I was, which is a sure sign you are not on your path.

On my next interview, I listened to the job described and felt tingles all through my body. I felt emotional, in a very good way–the kind of spontaneous cry that bursts through that you know you are hitting pay dirt to your soul. After we discussed the details, the interviewer told me I was an Ideal Candidate and she wanted to offer me the job. This was the complete opposite of being shamed for a ladder. The whole process was effortless and flowed. I felt like I was with a kindred spirit. I walked out feeling expansive and hopeful again wondering what other dreams I could pursue and add to that new job that followed this unique path that was made just for me.

You are supposed to feel good. You are supposed to feel honored for your special gifts. You are supposed to be appreciated. And when you don’t feel any of that, you are probably just off your unique path.

——————————————————————

To buy your deck and be part of the fun, go HERE.

If you already bought your deck, there’s a Info Class with lessons like this in December HERE.


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2583. Trip to Romania Part 3: Painted Monastaries

Me Sketching at Voronet

We went to a lot of monasteries old and new. Of course the star monasatries are the old ones...

Above is Voronet Monastery in the Moldovan area of Romania. It was built in 1488 by Stephen the Great. The painting have survived war, weather and disuse. They are now restored including the paintings on the inside. They are not restoring the exterior paintings as far as I know which I think is a good thing.

This was the only place where we ran into an American tour group.

Detail from the exterior of Voronet. All of these churches have paintings of the Last Judgement... This is the place you want to avoid...


This is from the Humor Monastery located in Mănăstirea Humorului.
Me sketching at Humor Monastary

Detail of the battle in Constantinople.

Above is the Humor Monastery, a painted monastery located in Mănăstirea Humorului.  The frescoes were originally painted in 1535 and this one shows Constantinople defending itself from a Persian invasion in 626. The Persians were illustrated as Turks which is proof that the news is always prone to revisionism even if it is really old news

A lot of the monasteries had these cool seraphim images depicted as wing clusters with lots of eyeballs.


I know I have been slow to post these images. But there is MUCH more! Next up, the Merry Cemetery and a stones throw from the Ukraine border... Read the rest of this post

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2584. "A painting is a symbol for the universe. Inside it, each piece relates to the other. Each piece is..."

“A painting is a symbol for the universe. Inside it, each piece relates to the other. Each... Read the rest of this post

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2585. Candy, Colored Pencils, and Christmas

I've been kinda busy I guess, finishing up some projects and trying not to panic about the holidays. Let's get started with the 'catch up', shall we?

The finished SKOR bar. This is with its new owner and is being framed as we speak. (And I'm so glad I bought a few extra of these for reference, which are still in the cupboard, because I just read an article about how there's a chocolate shortage looming on the horizon - !!!!)


I did this with . . . trying to remember . . . Prismacolors and Polychromos I think, on Stonehenge paper. I know that sounds bad that I can't remember, but when you have as many brands of pencils as I do, and they get cleaned up and put away after each project, its easy to forget.) This is 5" x 10".


~ ~ ~ ~ ~


Then I did this house and people portrait for a nice family who wanted to remember their vacation together in France. This one required some photoshopping to get the people from different photos all looking out the correct windows in this photo before I could start the drawing. 

On this one I used Prismacolors and Cretacolor Soho Urban Artist pencils. The Sohos are pretty hard, and had the exact right shade of blue grey I needed for those shutters. I also used a lot of their Lamp Black for shadows, which is really a grey. I don't always mix brands of pencils, but do when I need a certain color, or need something soft or harder to do a specific task. 


The original of this was 11" x 15". And it was going to Buffalo, NY, which had 5' of snow today!!! I feel like I should have wrapped it in a blanket or something. 

~ ~ ~ ~ ~


I'm really honored to be included in Katherine Tyrrell's new book, Sketching 365 (or if you're in the US, its called Drawing 365). She has a Facebook page dedicated to it.
I can't remember now which pieces of mine she asked for, and I don't have a copy yet to check. But I'm in there, somewhere, along with a whole bunch of other super talented drawers. Thanks Katherine!!




~ ~ ~ ~ ~


And then . . . dun, dun, DUNNNNNN . . .

CHRISTMAS

(insert those Psycho screeching violin noises here)

Every year I say "I'm not making cards! I hate making cards! I'm not making them!" and then I do.

Some of these are newish, some are oldies but goodies, image-wise. I found these fun blank cards with ornamental embossed edges, which I thought were perfect for festive cards. They all have fancy deckle edged envelopes. And they're all in the shop.
















I have a couple other pieces I want to make into cards, but we'll see. One is square, so I ordered square envelopes, and when they arrived yesterday I realized I ordered the wrong size! (note to self: never order stuff before the coffee has fully kicked in) I should probably just work on my new card for this year, and some other projects that are pending. 

Its raining here, which is great for our drought. But of course the kitties are all out of whack because they can't go outside as much (translation: they're all climbing the walls in here). They have catnip and snacks and 500 places to perch and sleep, so they're OK. Which reminds me -  I need to order their new catnip cigars for Christmas (shhh, don't tell them). Seriously, if you want a really amazing cat nip toy, go here and get these - Hot Cat Treats.

Stay warm!!


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2586. forgive me

I can only apologise, profusely, for what I'm about to do. I hate myself for doing it, but I am about to mention the C-word. 
Yes, as soon as you know, Christmas will be upon us. Well, for once, I've been thinking ahead and I've put this bumper pack of AJ goodies together just in time. This includes my book, 3 zines, bag, badges, postcards, greetings cards & stickers.
You can get your little mits on it HERE.
Sorry, again.

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2587. Artist of the Day: Jeff Simpson

Today we look at the work of Jeff Simpson, Cartoon Brew's Artist of the Day!

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2588. baby steps

the first sketch for the cover of the first in line (designed by Jens Andersson)

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2589. Living in my Illustrations

img004.jpg

Being an illustrator is great fun.  Why?  Because you can use your imagination to go places you’ve never been and do things you’ve never done. For instance, I have always wanted a log cabin up in the mountains.  As a teen, I used to imagine having a studio up a flight of wooden steps to a big room. It would have rafter ceilings and a window seat for me to look out of.  It would be warm and cozy and I could sit and do my art all day long near a roaring fire in the wood stove.

When I began thinking of places for my character Burl the bear to live in, I made it just like “I” wanted it!  Warm and inviting!  When you walk through the doorway of my story, you will find a home that lives in my imagination. It will be a place that I love and I will revisit it many times as the story progresses. I must be passionate about what I draw or it becomes listless and boring. This process is what makes a story believable.

My experience tells me that children notice the tiniest of details.  I did a school visit after Peepsqueak was published by Harper Collins Publisher.  I read the book to the children and then we talked.  Through out the story there was another story going on in the book. It was a little tiny mouse who appeared on many of the pages.  The children did not miss it. They even commented on the mouse as I read to them.  I let them in on a little secret.  I named the mouse Elliot.  When I told them his name they all squealed with delight and pointed to the cutest little boy in their classroom who was named Elliot!   He was beaming.  Suddenly he became part of the story. He was so happy!

These are the things that make a story magical in the eyes of children and adults alike.  Its also why I continue creating images.  I love seeing characters develop.   I love finding their voices. .. what they are like… what they like to do.  It does not stop when I leave the studio.  I think about them all the time, until I finally know how they would react in any given situation. That way they become very believable creations and loved by all.

Stay posted,  Burl and Briley are growing on my heart daily.  I can hardly wait to illustrate the books that are in my mind!


Filed under: how to write, My Characters

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2590. Cinderella Umbrage



They obviously found their target demographic:  Me.

Anyway, here's the trailer.

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2591. I just finished this wallet design…who doesn’t love...



I just finished this wallet design…who doesn’t love Paris? And it’s a long story as to why H.P. Lovecraft’s Cthuhlu beast is sharing the landscape with the Eiffel, but ask me and I’ll tell you later. 



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2592. Vicki Alvarez

Charming characters by illustrator Vicki Alvarez



…checkout Vicki's Etsy shop here...

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2593. Thanksgiving Turkey Lunch Tutorial

Exodus 20:7
Thou shalt not take the name of the Lord thy God in vain

We are now working on the 3rd Commandment in pancakes and thankfulness is our theme. Since Thanksgiving is about being thankful, I taught my kids that we are to use our mouths to give God thanks and praise instead of misusing his name.

I was trying for an orange lunch theme with the orange jello and orange fruit (I LOVE themes....I can stay awake at night thinking about themes, so fun!).

This time I was able to surprise my kids with the turkeys in their lunches. Usually they find out and see me working on it, but not this time! Yeah!


You can make these pancakes ahead, wrap them, freeze them in a freezer bag and then put them in your kid's lunches the next day.  They will thaw by lunchtime.

Check out the video HERE, or watch it below:


I made enough batter for my kids to make their own turkeys after school.  I was able to freeze their lunch turkeys before they got home so they didn't know about them!

My daughter's turkey was sooooo cute! I love seeing what my kids come up with in art pancakes.

Blessings,
Jenni

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2594. Umizoomi – Children’s Book Illustration

Children’s book illustration – Working with Licensed Art

umizoomi children's book illustration cover art christmasA few years ago I teamed up with a good friend of mine to work on some children’s book illustration for Random House and Nickelodeon. We were hired to create two different Umizoomi books, one for Christmas and one about a lost kitten. Umizoomi was completely new to me and when the request came in I actually had to look the characters up on line. When I was younger my children used to watch all the kid shows so it was easy to get familiar with them. Now that my kids are older I have to watch them all on my own. I must admit it’s not nearly as fun but I do still enjoy working on the books.

Putting together illustrations like these was a bit of a challenge because they were originally created in 3D animated and I work mainly in 2D. Even though we had to imitate a 3D look the creation process is basically the same no matter what kind of book it is, starts with sketches, ends with finished art. To build each illustration requires me to become familiar with the characters, the sets, their personalities, how they move, the mannerisms they use and all the other little things the animators masterfully build into the property to bring it to life. That means reviewing each episode over and over again until I’m sure I’ve got it right. By the time the project is complete I’ve probably watched each video 50 times or more but it all pays off when I get to see the printed book sitting on a shelf in the book store. I love working on licensed properties and am always looking for something new. Each one holds a separate challenge and requires a different skill set. My ultimate goal is for my work to match the original so closely no one can even tell it was illustrated by me. Unlike my other books the best compliment I can receive when I working with a licensed property is when someone looks at it and says, “You did that? That doesn’t look anything like your work.”

 

Umizoomi children's book illustration 7 Umizoomi children's book illustration 2 umizoomi children's book illustration cover art christmas Umizoomi children's book illustration 5 Umizoomi children's book illustration 3 Umizoomi children's book sketch1 Umizoomi children's book illustration 4 Umizoomi children's book sketch 2

The post Umizoomi – Children’s Book Illustration appeared first on Bob Ostrom Studio - 919-809-6178.

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2595. Twigs and bones

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2596. Disney Helped Derail DreamWorks-Hasbro Merger Talks

Troubling new details about the abruptly-halted merger talks between DreamWorks Animation and Hasbro have been revealed.

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2597. 'Grow'vember day 20 - yet more castles

Pencil drawings of castles
Day 20
Topic - yet more castles

Less sloppy by the day I think. A lot more focus on getting the tone working too today. I'm happy enough with these to move on to the next topic.

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2598. Grumpy has Arrived!

Our cantankerous feather friend has landed....

Ella Grace and Nana T check out Grumpy's bio..... 



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2599. OPEN STUDIOS! TOMORROW!


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2600. Painting old buildings

Oh, my.  Yes, painting old buildings in watercolor — not latex. You’ll want to see illustrator and fine-arts painter James Gurney dash off an urbanscape — before the time’s up on his parking meter. Former National Geographic magazine illustrator of archeological/historical subjects. Author-illustrator of books for children and adults. An exquisite, if occasionally quirky teacher of drawing and painting,... Read More

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