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Viewing: Blog Posts Tagged with: Illustration, Most Recent at Top [Help]
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1. Watching some Harry Potter!

Watching some Harry Potter!

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2. well my time went so quickly, i went lickety-splickly

 I've just made these really quick sketches whilst watching a series of interviews with Bette Davies. They took a couple of minutes each. It's by doing these fast and furious portraits, from the tv, that I've become comfortable with drawing faces and people. I've made hundreds and hundreds of them over the past few years. They're not amazing. They're not going to set the world alight. But that's not the point. I've learnt so much from doing them, and more than that I really enjoy creating them.

There's another blog post HERE, from two-ish years ago. Back then, it seems, I was still not confident drawing 'real life people'. Which just goes to show how quickly you can build your confidence through practice. Jeez, I'll draw anyone and everyone now - from the big screen to the real life.

0 Comments on well my time went so quickly, i went lickety-splickly as of 7/26/2014 11:44:00 AM
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3. New Work

furry baby_RobertaBaird
How strange that Nature does not knock, and yet does not intrude!  ~ Emily Dickinson

I’ve been working on a Halloween book for Pelican Publishing so I’ve been a little absent from the blog.  I just popped in to say hello! Hello!

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4. Inspired by the Sketch Dailies topic today, and how much I loved...

Inspired by the Sketch Dailies topic today, and how much I loved using ink yesterday I created this! I know how nice it is to snuggle with your best friend, especially if it is sort of smelly, but happy with a tail.

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5. Summer Vacation – lllustration by Bob Ostrom Studio

summer vacation, beach, sun tan, illustration, bob ostromSummer Vacation!

Hope everyone is having a great summer! Last week I headed down to the beach here in North Carolina for a short little summer vacation. Unfortunately it rained harder than I’ve ever seen it rain. It was one of those rains where you think it can’t possibly rain any harder but then it does….all day. Just as we checked into the hotel it started let up. The sun popped out for about an hour and half so the kids and I grabbed our boogie boards and headed down to the ocean. Right about the time we decided to to get out of the water the rain came back. And so it went the following day. Two hours of sun at the beach in the morning (with the darkest storm cloud I’ve ever seen on the horizon) followed by a torrential down pour. Since we don’t live too far we decided enough was enough, jumped in the car and headed back home. All in all everyone had a pretty great time. I think maybe we’ll head down another time before the summer is done and see if we can’t get a little better weather.

The post Summer Vacation – lllustration by Bob Ostrom Studio appeared first on Illustration.

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6. VINTAGE - pinterest

Today's Friday eye candy feature all comes from the Pinterest boards of Arden Kuhlman Riordan. Arden is the daughter of Graphic Designers Roy and Gilda Kuhlman and it is obvious she has a passion for mid century graphics and illustration. Her boards are a treasure trove of design on book covers, records, posters, and more. You can see a wealth of artists such as Paul Rand, Saul Bass, Dick Bruna

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7. Meerkat Love



It has already been a year since I feverishly put my portfolio together for the 2013 SCBWI L.A. Summer Conference and this was the art I used for my promo postcard. And here we are, the 2014 starts next week! Where does the dang time go?

I won’t be making the conference this year, but I am really jealous happy for all y ‘all that are attending this year! Yessss, so, so very happy (clenches jaw.)

But seriously! I’m thrilled for you, especially the folks who haven’t ever attended before. You’re going to love it and get so much out of it!

I’ll be waiting with baited breath for photos and to hear all about it!


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8. I’ve been super excited about trying out inking since I...

I’ve been super excited about trying out inking since I went to Icon a week or so ago, and when I saw that Yuko Shimizu had some videos on skillshare that just came out, I had to watch them. This was the result; it was super fun to work with ink, quick but… MESSY. My hands are covered, hah!

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We’re so excited to share with you I AM A WITCH’S CAT, available this week, written and illustrated by Harriet Muncaster.

I Am a Witch's Cat

We in the HCCB School & Library department are pretty huge fans of tiny things (dollhouse food, figurines, these amazing things . . . you name it), and we couldn’t be more delighted to have found a kindred spirit in Harriet Muncaster. Harriet’s book tells the story of a little girl who believes that her mother is a good witch and that she is a special witch’s cat, and it’s illustrated with photographs of handmade miniatures—characters, furniture, accessories, and details, all lovingly crafted and composed into scenes. We just love it to pieces.

Harriet was kind enough to give us a behind-the-scenes looks at her process for creating the fantastic art from I AM A WITCH’S CAT.

Harriet Muncaster:

I have always been fascinated by tiny things. When I was young I spent my time making miniature houses and clothes and writing minuscule fairy letters. That love of tiny things has never left me, and so, when I took illustration as my degree at university, it felt almost natural to start making my pictures in 3D. I create dollhouse-sized scenes (or sets, as I call them) out of cardboard and fabric and then photograph them to make a flat picture.

In these photos, you can see some of the process I go through to make the scenes. If it is a room, I usually start with a box-like shape and then put in the flooring and wallpaper. I either paint the wallpaper on or make it on the computer and stick it on as you would proper wallpaper (like in the bedroom scene below)!

Beginnings of the bedroom scene

Beginnings of the bedroom scene


The furniture is made from card stock. It gives me a lot of freedom to make everything from card because I can literally make it into any shape I like. I can use the card to make something really fancy or really plain and in whatever style I like.

I also like the way one can use lighting when creating a 3D picture. It is possible to really set the mood by using different sorts of atmospheric lighting. My favourite bit of lighting in the book is the scene where Witch’s Cat is saying goodbye to her Mom at the door and the coloured glass in the door is shining against the wall in a rainbow pattern. I got this effect by using coloured cellophane sweet wrappers and then shining a light behind them.


Experimenting with some lighting filters made from coloured cellophane chocolate wrappers as seen in the hallway scene


The hardest thing to make in the book was the trolley in the supermarket scenes. It took me absolutely ages and was extremely difficult and fiddly to make! It’s definitely the most delicate thing in the whole book.


The checkout scene in full, with trolley


One of my favourite things to make in the book was the patchwork quilt on the bed. I just love the colours in it, which are quite autumnal. I tried to incorporate a lot of autumnal colours into the room scenes, as it is a Halloween book.


Trying the mom character for size, with close-up of patchwork quilt


It feels very magical when a scene becomes finished and you can look right into it and touch it. It’s a real, tiny little world of its own with its own atmosphere and feel to it. I love how tangible it is!


Kitchen scene in the early stages


Food boxes all ready to be put into the scene.

Thank you so much, Harriet!

Check out Harriet’s great blog for a whole lot of miniature inspiration, including a post about how she created the cover art for I AM A WITCH’S CAT. And in case you haven’t quite had your fill of tiny for the day, here are some bonus photos:

Hallway wallpaper design

Hallway wallpaper design

Design for some of the the food boxes in the shopping scene ready to be printed, cut out and folded into 3d boxes

Design for some of the the food boxes in the shopping scene ready to be printed, cut out, and folded into 3D boxes

Mom character. Checking everything is good with her position and the way she is holding the vacuum cleaner

Mom character. Checking everything is good with her position and the way she is holding the vacuum cleaner

Characters, furniture and accessories all neatly boxed up to be transported for exhibition

Characters, furniture, and accessories all neatly boxed up to be transported for exhibition

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10. Illustrator Helen Musselwhite





Helen Musselwhite works with paper creating models and sets, she cuts all the pieces by hand creating multi-layed designs.  Her clients include Audi, McDonalds and Nokia amongst many.  Her influences include; The British countryside, William Morris and 1970′s textile design. Helen Musselwhite is represented by the U.K based illustration agency handsome frank.

To see more of Helen Musselwhite’s lovely work visit her website and flickr.

posted by jess



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11. Summer Dreaming

Thinking of making a big splash this summer!

  ... here's hoping your summer dreams come true!

I'll be in Tokyo from the end of July throughout August, with an exhibition at Aoyama’s Space Yui running from 21st-30th August. Please drop by if you're in town.


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12. Paula: Karate for Kids!

Something on the drawing board...

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13. So, is Duchovny's book a picture book? :snort:

©2012, Debbie Ridpath Ohi. P.S. - Don't miss Liz Garton Scanlon on BookPeople, Austin's blog today. Good stuff! This work is copyrighted material. All opinions are those of the writer, unless otherwise indicated. All book reviews are UNSOLICITED,... Read the rest of this post

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14. drink in the garden

As usual I was having trouble deciding on a direction for my final assignment. I ended up dedicating this picture to a good friend who taught me how to make a mean margarita.

This is set in her lovely garden surrounded by her flowers.
Check out the amazing work of my fellow students here in the gallery

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15. Once Upon A Sketch - Going Digital

Hi everyone!  Check out my new post on Once Upon A Sketch about the basics of transitioning from traditional illustration to digital illustration!


0 Comments on Once Upon A Sketch - Going Digital as of 7/22/2014 1:17:00 PM
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16. Tag! I’m it…

"Do you run?" you might ask.

"Only when chased." I would reply.

"Do you blog?" you might ask.

"Only when  tagged."

So thank goodness for K.G. Campbell tapping me on the virtual shoulder and saying... "You're it!"


Last week, the funny and fabulously talented K.G. Campbell was "it" in this 4 question game of blog tag.  A game in which a bunch of authors and illustrators are running about tagging each other's blogs, answering questions about their working process.


Here is a link to Mr. Campbell's Q and A.

And here is mine...

Ready. Set. Go!


What am I currently working on?

I'm usually juggling 3 projects simultaneously.

This is what is on my desk today...

















Work in Progress from SEA REX (Summer 2015, Viking) @mollyidle via Instagram


I'm also scribbling away on sketches for ZOMBELINA DANCES THE NUTCRACKER, by Kristyn Crow (Fall 2015, Bloomsbury).

And... FLORA AND THE PEACOCKS (Spring 2016, Chronicle)


How does my work differ from others of it's genre?

This is an interesting question. I think that if I were a writer of thrilling crime mysteries, or satire, or historical fiction, it might be easier to find a genre basis of comparison, and then to say how my work differs. But picture books aren't really a genre. They're a medium. They are means to tell a story, like a novel, or a comic strip, or a movie. There are as many different ways to utilize the medium of picture books as there are different people making them... that's one of the things I love most about them (picture books and picture book makers).

And while I don't constrain myself to any particular genre when working within the medium of picture books, I do find that the stories I gravitate towards, the stories I want to tell, do tend to  have a few elements in common.... improbability, theatricality, sincerity and humor.


Why do I write what I write?

Because I enjoy it!  And because I love a challenge.

An idea for a story will strike me, and the prospect of telling it, and telling it well, is at once tantalizing and terrifying.

The terror is what causes me to procrastinate.

I know the depth of the work involved in getting a story just right. It's daunting. No sane person would willingly spend months, or years, fussing over 32 pages and  200 words, or 50 words, or one word... or no words! So, often, I will sit on idea, mulling it over for ages in my mind before I ever put pencil to paper.

But the terror is inevitably overcome by the tantalizing vision I  had in that moment when an idea lit. That warm mental lightbulb glow... The vision of how awesome the story could be... So, I start scribbling.


How does my storytelling process work?

Does my storytelling process work? This questions supposes that it does...and I like that idea...so I'm running with it! (This is the only other instance in which you will see me run.)

I sometimes wish fervently that I had a set process which worked for every story...

Every story, every project, seems do demand it's own way of working. And so, I find I'm reinventing the wheel whenever I start something new.

Sometimes the words come first, sometimes an image, sometimes a whole world magically appears out of nowhere and it seems all I have to do is take dictation.

But however it begins, I find myself amassing a bunch of words scribbled in my notebook and a bunch of earnest, if unintelligible, lines drawn in my sketchbook.  They look like this...


penguin notes_photo












When I think I have everything figured out, I start working on constructing full sentences and/or full sketches. That is to say, that I think I have everything figured out to make the story work. But that is a very different thing than having everything figured out that will make the story work as a picture book.

Those are two very different things. I mean, can make a really beautiful drawing that works compositionally... But that doesn't matter a lick, if it doesn't work in the context of the book. Pacing, page turns, design, all this gets figured out when I start working to scale on the sequential images. Like this...














That's the uphill work for me. Once the sketches are done, the rest of the process feels like coasting...













FLORA and the PENGUIN (September 2014, Chronicle)



I am out of questions, out of answers, and out of breath from all this virtual running.


Tag, Greg Pizzoli - you're it!




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17. Elegant Elephant, Arrogant?

elephant450 2


… although a  repeat performance may depend quite heavily on the tightrope’s tensile strength.


The Illustration Friday theme of the week is “repeat.”


You know.


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18. cabbages! two for a pound!!

 Books for sale! Books for sale! Andrea's book for sale!!

Excuse me for peddling my wares, but you know, being a freelancer in the creative industry really is as reliable, financially, as it sounds and sometimes you just got to shout about what you do. Usually, when you've just got a couple of big bills in.

Anyway, you can get my book HERE. It is full of drawings, thoughts, sketchbook pages and what have you, from the last eight years of my obsessional drawing.

I'll shut up now. Fangyou very much.

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19. DESIGNER - judy kaufman

Designer Judy Kaufman has created a new collection of patterns which are available for non-exclusive license called Hello Pattern. The prints include geometric, organic, typographic forms which can be applied to paper, fabric, wood, ceramics, walls, shower curtains, gadgets, and more. Retailers, manufacturers, product designers, fashion designers, interior designers, etc. can use them on any

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20. Jungle Grumble - Almost Here!!!

Sorry I've been off-air for a while. I am so busy trying to get my sketching book ready for presentation at the Frankfurt Book Fair, that I have not been able to stop and chat. But I had to tell you about what arrived in the post today... 

My advance copies of Jungle Grumble! It was a total surprise, as I wasn't particularly expecting them yet, since publication isn't until October. It's looking great. It's got a silk-finish cover, rather than full gloss, which I rather like.

I'll let you know when it's actually available to buy. Not long now! Right, back to work...

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21. New Painting for the Jack Kirby show in Seattle.

This is for the Jack Kirby show that's coming up in August. I always loved the way he visually told stories made with crazy bold graphics. This one is taking an extra creature from an old comic book and painting it up in Photoshop while keeping the bold designs that Kirby created.
I wanted to do something more complicated but I've got many other projects that need my attention right now so this one will have to suffice.

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22. 5&Dime Friday: Serious as an Art Attack!

OH, my word, it's the weekend -- and it makes us want to flee! Anywhere! Well, anywhere there's water and sun, probably. Or, barring that, lovely rain, and a good bookstore with a nice coffee shop. And tights. Even if we can't pop off to Futurama in... Read the rest of this post

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23. days that used to be

Back to the bookbench. So, after spending all that time doing all the work on the front (a lot more work than I'd anticipated as it just seemed to grow and grow and grow) I had to do it all again on the back.
Now, because I'm terrible at updating (or not updating?) projects, I just leaving them hanging midway like some cliff-hanger and annoyingly you never get to see the final episode, I thought I'd post the end result of my bookbench. Well, this isn't quite the end result, this the penultimate stage. So there's still scope for me to leave him hanging off that cliff.
These two photos, above and below, are a couple of moments that I like. Apologies for the quality of the photos. I took them all on my iPhone and have still not got to grips with the camera.
The drawing on the back of my bookbench was the tidier version of the one at the top of this post. Our girl has interrupted her reading to tidy up - by shoving everything under or behind the sofa.
And so, my bench also came with instructions (below). All the objects that you could see on the front of the bench can been found on the back, tucked under cushions, etc. You've got to search for them. Yes, I really did draw it ALL again. I like to bring that interactive element to drawings. It was what rocked my world, about books and illustrations, when I was a kid.
My bench is now actually out on display, with the 49 others, in London. There is a trail and map so you can go and see them all. Mine is on the Greenwich part of the trail in this churchyard. I've been told that the church backs onto a couple of schools, and they have already planned school visits to the bench. I hope the kids have fun finding all of the objects and stuff and nonsense.
I'll post the final stage soon; which was adding a little colour, and then the most nerve-racking bit of all adding the varnish. Until that point I had no idea how the marker pens would react to hard core varnish/resin. Would all that work bleed once the varnish hit it? Would the whole drawing be ruined? 
PS, if anyone is in London, and visits the bookbench, please take a photo of yourself there. I'd love to see it. Send it to me.

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24. Watercolour: Painted Flowers

I am going to have to apologise in advance as blogging is going to be a bit erratic in the next couple of months, as I'm dashing around clearing things up and packing. Yes, packing. More on that later ... Meanwhile, here's a little paint doodle I did a few months ago that I've finally cleaned up and created a pattern with:




And here's the original sketch:




I left all the painted imperfections in this time. I normally photoshop them out, but I liked them here, it's oddly childlike and simple but sweet. Well, that's my opinion ... what do you think?

Wishing you wonderful days of sunshine and all things good. Cheers.


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25. Finishing up some #sketches from our trip! #seattle #artstagram...

Finishing up some #sketches from our trip! #seattle #artstagram #illustration #watercolor #ink #journal

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