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9076. Artist of the Day: Peter Millard

Discover the work of Peter Millard, Cartoon Brew's Artist of the Day!

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9077. Illustration time lapse.

A video posted by Tracy Bishop (@tracybishopart) on



Illustration time lapse.



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9078. Fish Fingers and Custard


A sketch of the 11th Doctor, because I finally worked my way through all the David Tennant  (SOB! WAIL!) episodes of "Dr Who."

Geronimo!

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9079. ‘Kahlil Gibran’s The Prophet’ Gets US Release Date

GKIDS will launch the film in New York City and Los Angeles in August.

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9080. Museum Week

 If you've followed my work in the past, you may know that a favourite subject matter of mine is collections. I've drawn collections of keys, badges, matchboxes, pens, buttons and souvenirs to name but a few. I've drawn souvenirs of all kinds, like in the drawing above, which comes from an entire sketchbook of collection drawings. Well, recently I've been commissioned by Greater Manchester Museum Group to create four drawings based on their collections from four of their museums.
I'm so thrilled about getting this gig. I've always wanted to draw museums' collections. I used to dream that I'd get a job cataloguing them all. It would be my perfect job, but unfortunately photography happened and then computers and so the call for museum collection illustrators and cataloguers waned. But, anyway, now I have the opportunity. My problem is how do you make just one drawing from each museum?
Well, firstly we narrowed it down by choosing the four museums from Greater Manchester's 21 venues. The first was Stockport's Hat Works Museum which is the building in the picture above. I already knew of, and love, this place. In fact we did a sketchcrawl there just a few weeks ago. It contains everything you need to know about hat making and the most amazing hats. But, not only do I get to visit the museums, but I also got the opportunity of looking through their archives and storage. This has been such a privilege, rooting through the stores, holding history (and antique top hats) in my hands.
 The second collection I'll be drawing is the Egyptology collection from Bolton Museum. They have an impressive collection of  Egyptology artefacts. Unfortunately, I didn't get the best photos from that trip but I did get a sketch of a dinosaur before I left the building!
 My third collection is from the natural History collections of Oldham Museum. I spent the best few hours with the curator, down in the cellar archives, surrounded by so many treasures of nature, whilst being educated on bugs and butterflies and birds nest. Actually, that too has been another joy and privilege of this whole experience, learning about, not just Natural History, the social history of this region and about the collectors. Learning from passionate people.
Again, I managed to sneak some sketching in before leaving the building. Well, what else do you do when waiting for the rain to stop?
 Today was my final visit and final collection. For that I went to the Museum of the Manchester Regiment to view their medal collections. I wasn't quite prepared by how touching an experience that would be. I shed a tear or two reading the heart breaking stories of the soldiers who lost their lives.
So, that's what I'm working on right now. My drawings were commissioned by the Museum Group for a new online shop they are building, which is coming soon. Very soon. Which reminds me, I don't have time to sit here blogging, I've got (a lot of) work to do.....
 
Oh, and unbeknownst to me, and quite coincidentally, this is actually Museum Week 2015. So Happy #MuseumWeek one and all. Go visit a museum because museums are great places. 

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9081. Book Review: ‘Chinese Animation: A History and Filmography’

A new book seeks to remedy the lack of English scholarship on China's contribution to the medium.

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9082. pictures mean business: the cover-o-matic

I made a little comic for #PicturesMeanBusiness. Click here for previous blog posts on the subject, and on the Twitter hash tag #PicturesMeanBusiness, to see what people are saying!

This issue isn't such a big one for me personally, because my publishers are wonderful at supporting me. But I see book covers being revealed all the time on social media with no mention of the artist, or a web link if people want to find out more about them. Why not show off your artist? It makes your announcement all that more interesting and share-worthy. And the best artists will be more likely to want to work with you.

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9083. Friday Linky List - March 27, 2015

From PW: Patreon Acquires Subbable, John and Hank Green's Crowdfunding Venture - anybody doing this? I'd love to hear more!

From The Nib - #Lighten Up - an interesting commentary on race in comics

Penguin Random House has a new resource for parents called Brightly

From Terribleminds: An Open Letter to That Ex-MFA Creative Writing Teacher Dude - Love it! (NSFW)

From The Guardian (via PW): The eight best young adult books - and why grownups should read them, too

From Salon (via PW): A Writer walks into a bank: Facing the financial fallout from a life dedicated to art

From the Children's Book Council: Half a Million New Children's Books Will Be Distributed through Pediatric Clinics to Help Close the Word Gap

From The Guardian (via PW): Harlan Coben: 'Every successful author still has to treat it as a job'

From The New York Times (via PW): A New Documentary Shines a Light on the Artist Who Gave Shape to Eloise

From The Telegraph (via PW): How to write a dystopian YA novel in 10 easy steps

From School Library Journal: Critics Sound off on "Clean Reader" App | Storify - I choose the words I use very carefully when I write. I'd be horrified to have my books read through this app!

From Deadline Hollywood: Steven Spielberg To Direct Sci-Fi Cult Favorite 'Ready Player One' - woohoo!!

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9084. High-tech glasses may help remedy color blindness


The normal perception of color depends on having distinct sets of color receptors, including green cones and red cones, each of which has a peak sensitivity to a slightly different wavelength of light.

Simulated cause and effect of color blindness—Images courtesy EnChroma
When their signals are interpreted by the brain, they allow red and green colors to be easily distinguishable.

The photo on the left represents normal color vision, and the one on the right simulates the way things look to people with red-green color blindness. The charts shows how the gap between the green cones and red cones are narrowed in people with red-green color blindness.
Normal and Deuteranoptic vision, courtesy Color-Blindness.com

Another way to think of it is that for people with color blindness, the red and green signals are making noise on the same channel. It's like having two radio signals going at the same time. You can't make out what they're saying on either station, and red and green end up being mixed up. People with color blindness have the necessary healthy receptors. The only problem is that they're too close to each other.


To address this problem, engineers at EnChroma developed special filters which fine-tune the light going to each of those closely nested receptors. The result is a genuine experience of red, green, purple, and pink colors where they weren't visible before.


The promotional video (link to YouTube) shows the emotional effect of color-blind people trying on the glasses and seeing colors for the first time.

Because there are many kinds of color blindness, EnChroma is careful not to claim that this is a universal cure, but it appears to provide a helpful boost for many deutans. EnChroma/Valspar offers a free online color blindness test to see if they might be suitable.

Reviewers on Amazon say that the glasses sometimes take a while to get used to, and that you have to learn the names for unfamiliar colors. There are also concerns about the build quality and brittleness of the lenses.

Read EnChroma's more in-depth explanation 
Color blindness test

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9085. finding Trekkie Monster


I'm delighted to get to stay on another semester at Fairfield University! This time to design the puppets for their spring production of Avenue Q, and teach a puppet building class to get them made. This has been one of the most challenging projects I've attempted, but the crew of 9 students are an incredible, dedicated and resilient team. 

I built a new version of Trekkie monster, inspired by the student actor playing him in our show, and based on the Project Puppet Borsa pattern, adapted. Here are some photos of me figuring him out, I'm too tired to add commentary yet. 
























































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9086. the UFO show


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9087. Julie Paschkis' P. ZONKA LAYS AN EGG


Easter is just around the corner. Have you ever wondered about those lovely decorated eggs called pysanky and how to make them? P. Zonka of P. ZONKA LAYS AN EGG (by Julie Paschkis) lays them that way, but you and I have to go to a little extra effort. Lucky for us, Peachtree Publishers has created an online guide for creating your very own pysanky... like P. Zonka's. CLICK HERE to learn all about it!

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9088. Comics Illustrator of the Week :: Babs Tarr

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Babs Tarr is a core member of the new Batgirl creative team that has been making waves, lately, with their new interpretation of the character, and fresh, modern approach to superhero mythology. She works as the interior artist on the book, while artist Cameron Stewart provides story breakdowns, and cover art. Babs Tarr has drawn a number of dynamic comic book covers herself, like this week’s variant cover to another trailblazing book, Gotham Academy.

Babs Tarr is an accomplished painter, video game concept artist, and all around versatile freelance illustrator. Her many clients include Hasbro, Disney, DC Comics, Boom! Comics, The San Francisco Chronicle, and The Boston Globe. Tarr received her BFA in Illustration from Maryland Institute College of Art in Baltimore, MD.

You can catch up with Babs Tarr’s convention schedule, and more artwork on her website here.

For more comics related art, you can follow me on my website comicstavern.com - Andy Yates

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9089. NEW COLLECTION - tiger dk

This is a sneak preview of a new collection coming soon to Tiger. Raindrops will be a fun range of brightly patterned goods arriving just in time for those April showers. Items include a cushion (above) zip pouch, storage boxes, blanket and umbrella. Tiger are a Danish company with stores throughout the UK,Scandinavia, Europe and Japan. The raindrops collection is not yet available online but

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9090. owl, birds, tree, flowers....

turner's initial pantings
©the enchanted easel 2015
oh, and some initials too. ;)

{these three custom paintings are on the easel this week....and,  just about DONE! if you would like something special created for your little one, please contact me through my website and i will surely accommodate you. i "heart" custom work.}

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9091. SHOWCASE - art & business of surface design

Today we have a really interesting showcase of patterns from the students on the Art & Business of Surface Design online E-Course run by designer Rachael Taylor. The ABSPD attracts a global audience with students taking part from all over the world and you can find emerging artists who all show great potential and have a passion for colour and pattern. Print & Pattern offers an annual

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9092. Is it summer yet?

Okay I know, it's just spring since a few days - still I wonder: Is it summer yet? I'm so looking forward to have one of those Shakerato's on a warm day!

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9093. Announcing the Friday Book Club




Most of what I know about painting and art history I learned from old books, and every once in a while I like to reread them, because learning is a lifelong process.

That led to an idea. What if we created a free forum on the blog where we could all compare notes about a favorite book?

What book to start with? It could be a biography, an art history book, or an art instruction book.

And it should be broken up into chapters. We're all busy, so we can read and discuss just one chapter a week. I'd like to suggest we begin with Harold Speed's "The Practice and Science of Drawing."



Harold Speed (1872-1957) was Royal-Academy trained portrait painter. His teaching method focuses on solid principles that have stood the test of time. Check out some of his drawings and paintings at the National Gallery website.



Like Solomon J. Solomon and some of the other great teacher/practitioners of his day, Speed expresses an insightful respect for the old masters. One thing I like about his concept of "mass drawing" is that it offers the student a natural transition between drawing and painting.

Harold Speed, Edward Grey, 1st Viscount Grey of Fallodon
The Practice and Science of Drawing is easy for everyone to acquire, and it's available in many different forms. It is available as an inexpensive softcover edition, which I recommend so that you can jot notes in the margins. You can also get a free Kindle edition. Or you can read it online in a free Archive.org edition.

This isn't going to be a workshop. I'm not the teacher, nor will I be comprehensively summarizing the points of the chapters. I'll just share my basic take-away from each reading, and I may show an example of how those thoughts affect — or have affected—my own practice. I'm expecting to learn from you and from the discussion. I will try to answer a few questions, but I'm hoping that members of the forum can help shoulder some of the Q and A.

We'll discuss a new chapter every Friday. Let's get started a week from today with the Preface and the Introduction. That's your assignment, and mine, too. Those who have time can do practice exercises related to each chapter as we move through the book.

If someone wants to set up a Facebook or Pinterest group for posting artwork, that would be great, and I'll link to it. I may stop by for a quick visit, but I'll probably focus most of my attention and comments on the blog so that the forum and discussion will be archived and searchable.

Let me know in the comments what you all think of the idea.

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9094. Book Release and Publishers Weekly

Exciting news!  "All My Stripes" has been released by Magination Press!  You can purchase the book through my store on my website, or through any bookseller.

 Also, Publisher's Weekly has announced by next picture book from Magination Press, "Big Red and the Little Bitty Wolf."  I'm working on the final art for this title right now, and am excited for its release in spring 2016!  In the meantime, check out this sneak peak at the character art!  I had a lot of fun designing Red's outfits!


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9095. Three Questions With Christopher Cheng: Advice for young writers, office chops and PYTHON

Christopher Cheng is an award-winning Australian author of more than 40 children's books and is a co-chair of the International Advisory Board for the SCBWI. I met Chris through the SCBWI, and I love his enthusiasm and positive energy. Pictured above: Chris with a python (!) as well as his narrative non-fiction picture book, PYTHON. Python was written by Chris, illustrated by Mark Jackson, and was published by Candlewick; it was shortlisted in the 2013 Children's Book Council Of The Year awards.

You can find more info about Chris at his website, Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and YouTube.

Synopsis of PYTHON:

Python stirs and slithers out from her shelter, smelling the air with her forked tongue. It’s time to molt her dull scales and reveal the glistening snake underneath. Gliding along a tree, she stops and watches very, very closely as a bird drops onto a branch — and escapes the razor-sharp teeth just in time. But Python is hungry, so she slides on to stalk new prey. Combining informative facts, expressive illustrations, and a lyrical, mesmerizing narrative, here is a book to captivate anyone fascinated by this iconic creature.

Q. Could you please take a photo of something in your office and tell us the story behind it?

A photo of SOMETHING in my office - was that SOMETHING or ONEthing or ANYthing? Well, because I am never good at following instructions (can you write the manuscript to 35000 words - sure … and then I submit a 55000 word manuscript that was published), I just have to send you two.

First, my CHOP!

This is me (as you can tell from the side … but there is also actually my Chinese name on the base that I use to ‘chop’ my books when I am signing them at home.

If I am travelling, I have a mini version of this - it's my travelling chop! and then here is the photo of the creatures bordering my desk … I lurve having these:

 

Q. What advice do you have for young writers?

Five letters, sounds like LIGHT …. WRITE!

Do it every day.

Do it for fun -

WRITE anything that comes in to your head;
WRITE what you heard your big sister say on the telephone last night when she thought she was speaking in secret;
WRITE what you wish to do;
WRITE what you want to do;
WRITE what your IMAGINATION tells you to write.
just WRITE.

And when you write, edit what you write … don’t make it a ramble (unless it is supposed to be). Sometimes later (it might be after your initial thoughts, it might be after a day or so - on the day you set aside as the reviewing day) go back and rewrite your work. Write about what makes you happy. Write about what makes you sad. Write about … what you are too afraid to write about!

And when you write, giggle and laugh and cry and moan and weep and slobber … get into the skin of your character. BE your character. Ask the questions what would (your character) do?

And ENJOY what you are doing.

Q What are you excited about right now?

Joining the throng of folk that Debbie is interviewing.
Life … I love hanging out with others of my kind - children’s book people.
Reading new books by my friends - like Samantha Berger, and Debbie Ridpath Ohi, and Isabel Roxas and … and SCBWI - we are a beautiful tribe.

------
For more interviews, see my Inkygirl Interview Archive.

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9096. Assignment I gave my UVU Illustration Class

The assignment was to illustrate a Rat Wizard in an alley BUT, they had to maintain one main focal point and include at least 25 objects not including clothing or structural items that are attached to buildings. I love working along with them each semester!


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9097. Struggling

I find myself struggling to make marks that satisfy me. I'm finding it very hard to slow down and practice, but it's what I need to be doing.

Not-so-Little Red. #gouachandink

A photo posted by Lisa Firke (@lisafirkecreative) on

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9098. DESIGNER - emma haines

Emma Haines is an illustrator and surface pattern designer based in the Midlands and is the founder of Cut and Stick Design. Emma studied illustration at Loughborough University and now works at an art licensing company. Her designs are inspired by 1960's children's books and she really loves character design - she enjoys bringing a smile to someone by creating a cute character. In the future

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9099. RUCKUS by Kathleen Jennings

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Submitted by Kathleen Jennings for the Illustration Friday topic RUCKUS.

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9100. the yeeha of‏ inspiration

Post by Alice Palace

Alice Palace has been going now for nearly 11 years and the most common question I get asked is where do I find my inspiration – so I have been thinking of the answer, and have 11 yeeha’s to help…

 

alicepalace_cowboy

 

1. Going horse riding is the best thing to help me with my creativity because it gets me outside – the fresh air always helps and my mind is free to wander. It’s about occupying one part of my brain, so the the other part is clear to be creative. It makes me feel happy and the more happy I am, the more creative ideas I have.
- So spend time doing the things you love most in life.
2. The same thing happens when I’m in the car driving by myself and listening/singing along to music. I find it’s a good time to tune out and spend some time inside my own head with my own thoughts. The same thing happens when I wash up – which is why we don’t have a dishwasher!
- So spend some time alone to daydream – your brain needs time for inactivity.
3. If I start work on any illustration idea, then more ideas will follow, and from those ideas there will be even more ideas – it’s just the way it works – but I need to get started in the first place. My main problem is not the lack of ideas, but making myself physically get started with them. Creativity is like a tap and needs to be used to keep it flowing.
- So do whatever you need to do to get started, draw up a timetable, make up some deadlines, pretend the Queen is over for a visit… and then start drawing.
4.  I find I have to do every pointless job there is, before I can start my illustration work – but having a good tidy up of my work area does really help – and then I just have to be super strict. But if I’m having one of those days when the drawings just aren’t right, then I’ll do something completely different for a while as I know that on another day I will do the whole thing much quicker and better.
- So stop if your hearts not in it (and return to it later/the next day).
5. Spending time with inspiring and inquisitive people is great for my own inspiration – anyone that I look up to for whatever reason – can really help with my own ideas.
- So spend time with friends and family (and strangers) that make you tick.
6. I find that walking to work with the dogs is a great start to the day and I love taking photos along the way. I like to look at the world in detail – seeing everything that looks beautiful to me, seeing colours and shapes, changes in the day, that might otherwise be missed.
- So start the day well and you’re more likely to create.
alicepalace_everythingIsAwesome
7. Watching films and reading books also helps to feed my inspiration. I get a monthly magazine subscription to ‘Red’ which is not only a nice surprise every month, but also helps to keep me up to date with fashion, homes and trends. I like ‘The simple things’ magazine too.
- So ask all your inspiring people about their favourites, and make a list, and get watching/reading.
8. Exhibiting at shows really helps me to stay inspired as I see them as an opportunity to show off my illustrations & products, and to get feedback – without these dates in the diary it would be easy to float along without any set deadlines. It’s also a time when I see impressive work by other people, and that inspires me to come up with something equally impressive next time.
- So get yourself out there.
9. Keeping a notebook really helps me – as I seek inspiration from all sorts of sources and I can write down ideas/words and keep them all safe. I’m always on the lookout for the little everyday things, observing people, watching films, dreams I have, reading books, conversations I have, a sentence I read/hear. If I’m really stuck for ideas, then I can look through and see drawings, doodles, scribbles about the weather, the mood I am in, the last time I laughed etc.
- So keep a sketchbook/notebook.
10. It’s good for me to have a routine and I try to have set working hours. I have to be disciplined because there are so many distractions these days with email, mobile, twitter, facebook, instagram, pinterest etc – not to mention the everyday life stuff like cooking, cleaning, looking after the dogs and my small child. The other day one of my friends asked me how I make myself go to work everyday and I found it a hard question to answer on the spot, but after thinking about it, I realised that I must just be pretty disciplined, and enjoy my work! It doesn’t seem like an option to me to not go.
- It’s so easy to let your life get filled up with other stuff, so a routine is really important.
11. If I’m not enjoying an illustration I’m working on, then generally it doesn’t work as well and I need to find a different approach, or just start something new. The BIGGEST thing of all is to enjoy the creation and trust your instinct. I find that the illustrations that work best are the ones that I enjoy doing most.
- To be truly inspired you need to trust your instinct and enjoy what you are creating, and it will show.
alicepalace_EnjoyTheCreation
See more Alice Palace illustrations here

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