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Viewing: Blog Posts Tagged with: design, Most Recent at Top [Help]
Results 1 - 25 of 785
1. Because toast!

Happy Overload, the upcoming Sparky Firepants coloring book spectacular is still in the works – but you can grab this cute-as-hell page and get it right now. Relieve some stress. Get your color on.

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2. The week in DC logo fixes – which do YOU prefer?

CirQUvHVEAA6DjzAs we told you on Tuesday, DC Entertainment unveiled a brand new logo for all its branding across all platforms. It's more of a "print" type throwback logo, designed by Pentagram, specifically partner Emily Oberman, just in time to give DC a "rebirth" to its older, more hopeful and optimistic self.

10 Comments on The week in DC logo fixes – which do YOU prefer?, last added: 5/21/2016
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3. DC gets a new logo just in time for Rebirth

Just as it did with The New 52, DC is ushering in a new logo for its new Rebirth era. The logo, which was designed by the design team Pentagram, will debut on next week’s DC Universe: Rebirth Special #1’ by Geoff Johns but will imediately be seen on all DC websites, social media channels, […]

10 Comments on DC gets a new logo just in time for Rebirth, last added: 5/17/2016
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4. Christmas Eve Bulletin Cover

Christmas Eve Cover 12.8.15-01Sometimes I forget to upload samples of my graphic design work. This piece I not only designed the text, I created the candles with the logos of the two different churches.

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5. The life and work of Buckminster Fuller: a timeline

A self-professed "comprehensive anticipatory design scientist," the inventor Buckminster Fuller (1895-1983) was undoubtedly a visionary. Fuller's creations often bordered on the realm of science fiction, ranging from the freestanding geodesic dome to the three-wheel Dymaxion car.

The post The life and work of Buckminster Fuller: a timeline appeared first on OUPblog.

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6. Daddy, what made the twenties roar so loud?

Here’s a fun poster I did for our local Chamber of Commerce’s holiday party last year. The most fun element was illustrating the flapper. Unreal! Finding and manipulating the right typefaces to exude that art deco 20s vibe was also the bee’s knees.

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Like a lot of the work I do, I used reference photos, tracing some parts and making up the others. The advantage to illustrating in the final design versus using a photo is that I can change the line color, weight, fills, and add elements (like the flower in her hat) to tie it all in to the poster design.

Because I created it in Adobe Illustrator, I was also able to pull out elements to make smaller signs, flyers and table signs for the event.

There’s sometimes a misconception that creating design comes out of thin air. The whole “staring at a blank canvas” thing. It can be like that. Most of the time it’s a result of doing a lot of homework on the subject matter – that’s where the ideas come from. The result you see here isn’t complicated, until you start conceptualizing all the other million ways it could have been done. There are always some pretty bad ideas (and designs) that get thrown out.

That’s the work. That’s the art. It’s also the fun. That’s why I do it.

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7. Emily Isabella

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Emily Isabella is an illustrator from Hudson Valley, her work varies from book illustrations, packaging designs to textile designs. Her work reflects on the delights of the everyday, in a very beautiful way. Her clients have included Anthropologie, Frankie Magazine and Birch Fabric to name a few. 

To see more from this illustrator visit her website

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8. Can design thinking challenge the scientific method?

The scientific method has long reigned as the trusted way to test hypotheses so as to produce new knowledge. Shaped by the likes of Francis Bacon, Galileo Galilei, and Ronald A. Fisher, the idea of replicable controlled experiments with at least two treatments has dominated scientific research as a way of producing accepted truths about the world around us. However, there is growing interest in design thinking, a research method which encourages practitioners to reformulate goals, question requirements, empathize with users, consider divergent solutions.

The post Can design thinking challenge the scientific method? appeared first on OUPblog.

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9. Why Michigan Is Your Next Destination For Writing

How Michigan Is The Perfect Home For Writers

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Writers are those who want to convey their thoughts, perceptions and feelings through certain forms like novels, short stories, blogs, and the like. Writers are those who are inclined to convey their message to the world. The context of their message should be imperative and helpful. Considering that the functions of writers are very important in this world, it is a must for them to see to it that the location where they would spend their time in writing should be very suitable. And this is how the State of Michigan is the perfect home for novel writers.

 

There are 5 certain facts written and explained below why Michigan is the perfect home for writers.

 

Michigan environment is always conducive to writing. Conduciveness is the first thing that every novel writer has to consider. The climatic condition really matters as far as having a beguiling and worth-reading novel is concerned. Michigan is the perfect home for the writers, because the climatic condition in this area is really fit for writing.

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Michigan has a lot of things to offer for the writers to write well their masterpieces. Michigan is one of the most livable places in the country, because of its capability to offer things suitable to all writers. The pride of this state has been known already and widely. One of the best things it can offer is local flair. And the locally made LivnFresh t-shirts, are among the best products that are made in Michigan. Wearing one, writers can wear comfortably dive into the Michican experience during summer. So writing during summer is still accompanied by comfort and convenience.

 

LivnFresh T-shirts really make the Michigan-based writers so amazing. There are various types of michigan pride gear, and one would typically wear one when they want to show off their pride of being from or visiting Michigan. The creators of this local brand of t-shirt did make sure that the writers can have a perfect clothing.

Clothing during summer writing is a crucial thing, because it is attached to the internal calmness and relaxation of both body and mind. Once the t-shirt the writers are wearing is really comfortable, for instance made up of 100% pure cotton, then there’s always comfort and pacification of the mind. This is essential to coming up with a perfect write-up every day.

Of course comfortable clothing is not the only thing that a writer needs.  He or she also often needs a comfortable pair of glasses.  But what about if you are a child needing glasses?  Well, stylish frames were hard to come by until Michigan couple Ben and Laura Harrision of Jones Paul Eyewear started their own fashion glasses company for children. Michigan really is a hot bed of innovation and creativity. So if your little writer needs glasses, make sure you go visit them.

Sometimes you may want to write outside of your vacation home or hotel room and for that you need to get out and gain some experiences to write about. There are some hangout locations in Michigan for the writers to unwind and relax regularly. There are famous hangout bars and nightlife areas here. These hangout locations serve as one of the pride and honor of this state. The famous hangout areas here are Hoppy’s Bar, The Tap Room, and Quinn and Tuite’s Irish Pub.

 

Life in Michigan is really great. Life greatness is what every person aspires for. Life greatness refers to the abundance of things that may lead to happiness and satisfaction. For writers, it is important to be happy and satisfied always. So any novel writer can have a wonderful time here because of the offered satisfying and elating things, like the natural parks (i.e. Isle Royale National Park) and the savory cuisines (i.e. Stanley’s Famous Restaurant).

 

They all say that writing is a passion and not an option. It might be true or not. For some, writing can be learned. But for others, writing should be a passion. Either of the two, writing novels, short stories and any other literary works can be done excellently once Michigan is chosen as the place to execute the writing. The things explained above are the reasons why and how the State of Michigan is reflected as the perfect home for writers.

 

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10. Illustrator Submission :: Lotta Nieminen

Post by Chloe

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Lotta Nieminen’s illustrations are packed with detail, colour and narrative. The bold vector shapes combined with subtle texture and an atmospheric colour-scheme is what really brings this work to life. Lotta Nieminen’s talent doesn’t stop at illustration either. She is also a graphic designer and art director who runs her own studio based in New York.

If you would like to see more of Lotta Nieminen’s work please visit her portfolio.

0 Comments on Illustrator Submission :: Lotta Nieminen as of 3/15/2016 12:36:00 PM
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11. Should design rights protect things you can’t see?

Although many EU IP lawyers are currently concentrating on the trade mark reforms, the Commission is quietly getting on with its study of the design protection system in Europe. The remit of the study is wide-ranging, but perhaps the most surprising issue that has arisen is whether design law in the EU should protect things that you can’t see.

The post Should design rights protect things you can’t see? appeared first on OUPblog.

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12. Zim & Zou

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Zim & Zou are Lucie Thomas and Thibault Zimmermann, they are two french artists based in Nancy. They use handcrafted objects to make beautiful colourful installations. They studied graphic design for three years whilst at art school, but their studio works in a variety of multidisciplinary ways incorporating illustration, graphic design and paper sculptures. There favourite material to use is paper, making everything by hand.

To find out more visit their website and Behance.

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13. Aesthetics and the Victorian Christmas card

When we think of Christmas cards, we usually picture images of holly, robins, angels and candles, or snow-covered cottages with sledging children, Nativity scenes with visiting Wise Men, or benevolent Santas with sacks full of presents. Very rarely, I imagine, do we picture a summer woodland scene features lounging female figures in classical dress and a lyre-playing cherub.

The post Aesthetics and the Victorian Christmas card appeared first on OUPblog.

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14. University Press Week blog tour (Wednesday)

For the last few years, the AAUP has organized a University Press blog tour to allow readers to discover the best of university press publishing. On Wednesday, their theme was "Design" featuring interviews with designers, examinations of the evolution of design, and parsing the process itself.

The post University Press Week blog tour (Wednesday) appeared first on OUPblog.

3 Comments on University Press Week blog tour (Wednesday), last added: 11/15/2015
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15. Comics Illustrator of the Week :: Paul Smith

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This week we celebrate the artwork of comics legend Paul Smith! The 600th issue of Uncanny X-Men hit the stands this week and I was very pleased to see that Smith contributed one of the variant covers for this landmark issue. X-Men was really the reason I got into comics as a kid. In fact the very first comic I picked up and read(besides the Bob’s Big Boy comics they used to give away when you ordered a kid’s meal..) was Uncanny X-Men #166 with that glorious Paul Smith cover of The X-Men battling the Brood!

A good friend of mine at the time(probably ’83/’84) had an older brother who collected comics and he had an big, old chest full of them(no bags ‘n boards, mind you..). So, when I’d go over there for a sleep-over, I’d get to rummage through his treasure trove of funny-books and then pull a few out for some late-night sleeping bag reading! Those Paul Smith issues of X-Men were truly magical, and always will be to me. There have been many great artists to work with Chris Claremont on his classic X-Men run, including legends like Dave Cockrum, John Byrne, Terry Austin, Bob Wiacek, John Romita Jr, Barry Windsor Smith, Arthur Adams, Alan Davis, Jim Lee, etc. etc, but for me, my favorite X-Men artist will always be Paul Smith. 

Smith is mostly a self-taught artist. He worked as an animator on Ralph Bakshi’s The Lord of the Rings and American Pop before working at Marvel Comics in the early 1980’s. After establishing himself on titles like X-Men, Doctor Strange, and Marvel Fanfare, Smith would go on to do more independent, critically acclaimed series like Leave It To Chance and The Golden Age, both with writer James Robinson. He continues to work in mainstream comics for special projects, and cover illustrations, while also staying very busy with private commission work.

The best place to get updates on what Paul Martin Smith(PMS) is up to and to see more art is on his website here.

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

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16. Illustrator Submission :: Daniel Arriaga

Post by Chloe

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Daniel Arriaga is an illustrator based in the USA whose work often tells a narrative, depicting fun characters. He has worked in various departments at Pixar, and also Disney. He has helped to produce films such as Wall-E, Up!, and Wreck-It-Ralph. Arriaga combines digital art with a subtle painterly style to bring his work to life, and his clever colour palettes create a nice ambiance in all his work.

If you’d like to see more illustrations by Daniel Arriaga, please visit his portfolio.

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17. Tough Guys + an interview with Keith Negley

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by Keith Negley (Flying Eye Books, 2015)

Heads up, email subscribers: my blog took a bit of a tumble so I’m reposting what was lost in the shuffle. Apologies, and thank you for reading!

The kind folks at Flying Eye sent over a preview of this book, thinking it was right up my alley.

It’s right up my alley.

The theme: yes. The design: yes. The snappy, bold, in-your-face look at tough guys plus the snappy, bold, in-your-face look at feelings: yes.

I chatted with Keith Negley, and learned a lot about this debut effort. I hope there’s more from him, and I hope you enjoy this peek into the brain of a picture book creator.

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Hi Keith! Can you talk about where this story came from? And what the process was like for its creation?

It all started when my son Parker who was 6 at the time stole a soccer ball from a friend during soccer practice and his friend got upset and they fought over it. Parker was angry at first, but then felt embarrassed and ashamed because he knew he did something wrong. I could tell he was struggling with how to handle all these new emotions that were happening to him at the same time. He walked away from the group and sat down to be by himself because he didn’t want anyone to see him cry. Later that night, I explained to him that it was totally natural to cry and that everybody does it. I told him sometimes even I cried, and he looked up at me and asked, “grown ups cry too?

It blew his mind that even adults cried because he thought it was something only kids did. I wished I had a book I could read to him that let him know that frustration and crying is a natural thing not to be ashamed of. The next day the idea for the book popped into my head.

You’ve done a lot of editorial illustration, but this is your first children’s book. Can you tell us the how and why you got into books?

I always liked the idea of making picture books for children, but it wasn’t until I became a parent and started reading a ton of picture books to my son did I realize there was a lack of the kind of books we enjoyed. Honestly the books I’ve been working on were born out of necessity because I wanted to read them and no one else had made them yet.

Your tumblr tag line is spectacular: part man, part negative space. Can you explain where that came from and why it represents you so well?

Ha, I find tragedy to be the greatest muse. The subjects I enjoy working with the most are the ones that break my heart. It’s cathartic somehow, and I feel like I really get to put a piece of me into the work. What ends up happening is I have a portfolio of rather depressing subject matter. But I’m always striving to create beautiful images with it. That juxtaposition is challenging and rewarding for me.

Add to that I tend to utilize negative space as a compositional tool fairly often and so I thought it tied the content in with the image making nature of the blog.

toughguys-9Who are some of your story heroes?

I’ve been a huge fan of Lane Smith for years and years. Jon Scieszka is another one. Ezra Jack Keats. Jack Kent’s Socks For Supper is one of my all time favorites as a kid and it still holds up today.

What do you remember about picture books from your childhood?

I remember my mom reading them to me and how she would make different voices for all the characters. I try to do that for Parker but he’s not into it at all unfortunately.

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What is your favorite piece of art hanging in your home or studio?

Not sure if this counts, but I like to make music in my spare time and I’m a huge nerd for vintage synthesizers. I currently have a 1979 Korg 770 sitting in my studio and just looking at it makes me very happy. I consider them works of art.

What’s next for you?

Trying to schedule some reading events for the fall/winter and I’m in the middle of working on my second book for Flying Eye which should be out in time for Father’s Day next year!

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Thank you, Keith! And vintage synthesizers totally count as works of art.

PS: Congratulations to the winner of the The Story of Diva and Flea giveaway, Ashley! And thanks to Flying Eye for the images used in this post.

ch

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18. Comics Illustrator of the Week :: Jeremy Bastian

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Since this is Halloween Week, I thought how better to celebrate than exploring the intricately detailed work of Cursed Pirate Girl creator Jeremy Bastian! A graduate of The Art Institute of Pittsburgh, Bastian spent his years studying the works of the great engraving art masters and old time book illustrators. One of the inspirations for Cursed Pirate Girl was a children’s book called The Ship’s Cat, featuring illustrations by Alan Aldridge. It takes about a week for Jeremy Bastian to draw one page of Cursed Pirate Girl. Each page is meticulously packed with the smallest details; it’s fun to just stare at a page and let your eyes wander. You can read about Jeremy’s art process on this blog post here.

Cursed Pirate Girl follows the title character’s search for her Pirate Captain father on the mythical Omerta Seas, encountering many strange and wondrous creatures along the way. The first 3 issues were published by Olympian Publishing and are now highly sought after collector’s items. Much bigger publisher Archaia/BOOM has taken over on Cursed Pirate Girl and if you’re quick enough, you might still be able to find a copy of Cursed Pirate Girl 2015 Annual(52 pages), which hit stands this month. The plan is to do 2 more yearly specials to complete the 6 part story, but there could be more material set in the Cursed Pirate Girl world after that.

If you want to get the latest news on Jeremy Bastian & Cursed Pirate Girl, fell free to follow him on Twitter here!

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

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19. Comics Illustrator of the Week :: Bob Flynn

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This week we honor the work of Boston based cartoonist/animator Bob Flynn, who illustrated a variant cover for the latest issue of Kaboom’s Over the Garden Wall. Flynn has been contributing comics and covers to titles like SpongeBob Comics, ARGH!, Nickelodeon Magazine, and Heeby Jeeby Comix, which he co-created. I really like his bubbly, liquid-y, cartoon drawings; they really ooze to life on the page!

In addition to comics, Flynn has worked as a character designer for the animated series Bravest Warriors and he is the Director of Art & Animation at FableVision Studios.

You can read one of his self-published comics Brain #1 for free on his website here, and you can check out more of his art there while you’re at it!

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

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20. Beyond the Pond + an interview with Joseph Kuefler

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by Joseph Kuefler (Balzer + Bray, 2015)

Settle in for snippets of story so goosebumpy you’ll think the pages just paper-sliced your soul in two. It is an honor to introduce you to Joseph Kuefler and his gorgeous debut, Beyond the Pond. I love every single word he’s spilled out to us here.

Enjoy!

Can you talk about where this book came from? 

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My dearest childhood friend lived across the street from a picturesque pond — one of those charming bodies of water with just the right mix of long grass, cattails and critters. Early mornings almost always found its surface blanketed in a magical fog. In winter months, we would skate on its surface. That pond filled me with such wonder as a boy.

So many years later, the wonder of ponds came back to me when I found myself telling my son, Jonah, stories each morning as I drove him to school. Our route took us past a smaller but no-less-magical pond, sandwiched between a row of houses, almost as if it was forced there, like it didn’t belong. We both imagined what fantastical creatures lived beneath its surface. And so, an idea for a picture book was born.

In hindsight, I absolutely see the connection between these moments of inspiration in my life.

And what was your process like for creating it? How did you turn an idea for a story into a completed picture book?

One advantage of being an author/illustrator is that my words and images can reveal themselves together. I begin with a loose story skeleton and single completed illustration that captures the atmosphere of the book. Small thumbnails get created as I’m improving and iterating on the story. Sometimes a posture or scene in my thumbnails will inspire a change to the text, sometimes it’s the other way around. Once the story is tight, I return to my thumbnails and create much tighter pencils, focusing more on composition and type placement.

Joseph-Kuefler-Cover-Sketch Joseph-Kuefler-Panel-SketchJoseph-Kuefler-ThumbnailsWhen it comes to final art, I work digitally, more out of necessity than choice. At the moment, picture books aren’t my day job, so I need to work from anywhere and everywhere. I was traveling a lot for work in the early stages of illustrating POND. Much of the book was illustrated from airplane seats and hotel rooms, cramped rides on bus benches and stolen moments in the office.

As someone formally trained at art school, I long for the day I can rely solely on traditional materials. In some ways I still feel like I need to apologize for using a computer, which is silly, I suppose, because digital doesn’t save me time and is no less difficult. The only thing it affords me is more mobility and greater access to my creative process.

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I read on your website all about Hum, and I’m so interested in that. Not so much as a musician myself, but because I think picture books function the same way a song does, as a complete and full narrative that can transcend that small space. What do you think?

I love this question because I absolutely agree. Prior to moving into my career as a creative director, I spent years working as a serious musician playing in an indie rock band. Songwriting and record producing is core to who I am and informs so much of all of my creative processes, both personal and professional.

Writing a great song begins with two questions: What do I want them to know? And how do I want them to feel? Nostalgia? Fear? Melancholy? Vulnerability? Defining the emotional arch predetermines so much about your palette—key, tuning, scale, effects, chord progressions, even mixing decisions. Once that’s defined, you need to reduce all of it, your whole vision, into between three and five minutes of music. It’s such a challenge.

This is true of great books. The books we love tell us a story, but they also tell us feeling. They teach us, adults and children alike, what it feels like to experience something, and they do it in 32 pages, give or take. A songwriter has chords. A picture book maker has paints and pencils. A songwriter has a small collection of seconds or minutes. A picture book maker has pages. Both artists curate their palettes to breathe the right mix of mood into whatever it is they are making.

More than any other mediums I’ve explored, children’s books and songs are the most related.

Like you suggest, great songs and picture books transcend their small spaces. They live on in your mind and heart and come to mean or represent so much more long after the final chord has rung and last page has turned.

Reviews have called this debut reminiscient of Maurice Sendak, Jon Klassen, and Wes Anderson, all huge story heroes. Who are your own story heroes?

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I know this is a picture book blog, but my greatest passion is cinema. I love movies and have my whole life. My dad encouraged me to explore the classics, with a particular emphasis on the defining films of the 60s and 70s. Many of my story heroes are filmmakers. I am a huge fan of Jean-Pierre Melville because he found a way to steal the best parts of Hitchcock and blend it with that kind cool only the French possess.

As a child, I loved Spielberg and the wonderful films Amblin would produce because they seemed to understand children in a way few other films did. I do love Wes Anderson for his vision and wit but also for the expert way he handles melancholy. When I begin a new picture book, I typically dive into the films that I feel share a similar atmosphere or message. It’s intentionally obvious I’ve included a few homages to Anderson’s films and style in POND—I wanted to thank him for inspiring me, and I wanted to give moms and dads something of their own to discover within the book.

Animation is also a huge source of inspiration for me. Words can’t describe how much Miyazaki inspires me. His films are somehow massive in scope and incredibly intimate and personal.

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I can’t say that I have any specific story heroes in the picture book space. I love the Steads and Klassen and Jeffers and all of the other usual suspects, but I don’t look to picture books to inform my own work as much as I do film or literature, even photography. I’m not trying to suggest that other picture books don’t influence my work—they most certainly do. They’re just not my primary source and I typically look to them much later in the process to help me work through a very specific problem.

I would, however, be remiss if I didn’t mention JK Rowling. Sometimes I close my eyes and hope that when I open them I will have somehow grown a scar on my forehead and transformed into Harry Potter. Rowling succeeded in revealing a hidden magic in our own world, something tucked away just around the bend, something you hadn’t realized was there all along. I love that so much about those books. Turning a pond into a portal seemed to transform the everyday and reveal a hidden magic in a similar way.

Can you tell us a little about the trailer for Beyond the Pond and how you created it? It’s such a perfect piece, and I always think trailers that feel like short films are some of the best!

Thank you for the compliments. I am a creative director who has spent many years in the branding and marketing industries working for clients we all know and love. Making films and telling their stories is a skill I’ve developed over time. When I began considering my own trailer, I knew it needed to feel a little more like a movie trailer than a “book” trailer. It was the only way I felt I could capture the spirit and scope of the book in such a short period of time.

Some are surprised to learn that the voice actor is me. The trailer simply HAD to be narrated by an old, English gentleman because, well, old, English gentlemen are the most magical of men. I didn’t have any on hand, so I put on my Dumbledore hat and effected one.

I love animating. It’s something I don’t get to do as often now, but I was thrilled to be able to dig back into After Effects for this little piece and am pretty happy with how it turned out, all things considered.

What do you remember about picture books from your childhood?

I remember my school library and, Ms. Geese, the world’s crabbiest librarian (if you’re reading this, Ms. Geese, I’m sorry, but you really were frightening). She demanded that we extract library books from the shelves with such expert precision you’d think they were Fabergé eggs. But since we were all so afraid of her, we would hide away in corners with our books. In some ways, her terror forced us to have a more intimate relationship with our books, and for that I am grateful.

I remember the pictures and wishing I could draw like those artists. Like all boys, I was so in love with WHERE THE WILD THINGS ARE. I would try to replicate the wild things over and over and wondered how in the world anyone could ever draw like that. All these years later, I am still left wondering.

What is your favorite piece of art hanging in your home or studio?

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I have two favorite walls in my home. One is a quiet corner of my house filled with family photos and texture studies I made over this last year. The family photos feature some of our favorite memories and experiences. It’s something we will continue to grow and add on to over the years.

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The second is a Banksy print hanging in my dining room. It’s big and bold and probably doesn’t belong in a space where people are meant to enjoy meals, but I like that about it.

What’s next for you?

A nap. Honestly. Between my day job, working to support POND’s release, welcoming our third child, Augustine, into the world four months ago, and breathing life into a new picture book, this year has been full, so incredibly, exhaustingly full. But it’s been a good kind of full.

Alessandra Balzer and Balzer + Bray were kind enough to buy two more books from me immediately after we finished POND. By the time this feature runs on your blog, I will have just completed final art for my next book. Then, it will be onto the third. I’m also developing a middle grade book and young reader series.

Beyond that, what’s next is experiencing what it feels like to release my very own picture book into the world. This whole thing continues to be so surreal. One of my lifelong dreams is in a state of becoming, and I couldn’t be happier.

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That story about Ms. Geese is one of the greatest library stories I’ve ever heard! Joseph, thanks for the music and the glimpse at the pond and beyond it all.

ch

A big thank you to Joseph Kuefler for the images in this post.

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21. Comics Illustrator of the Week :: David Lafuente

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I love the character and attitude that artist David Lafuente puts into his comics pages! This week saw the release of the fifth and final issue of Marvel’s M.O.D.O.K. Assassin, which features another deliciously dynamic cover by Lafuente. David Lafuente is from Spain and currently lives in London where he’s working on his next big project, a creator-owned series for Image Comics called The Ludocrats with fellow creators Kieron Gillen and Jim Rossignol.

Lafuente first cut his teeth in the mainstream comics world on the 2008-09 Hellcat mini-series with writer/artist Kathryn Immonen, then worked with Brian M. Bendis on the Ultimate Spider-Man relaunch. Some of my favorite art by David Lafuente is his interior work on the All-New Doop series in 2014 with Doop’s creator’s Peter Milligan & Mike Allred; check out those beautiful pages above!

Other notable works include Batman Eternal, Batgirl, Neli Gaiman’s The Graveyard Book, and The Runaways.

You can follow David Lafuente and see his art process on his tumblr page here.

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

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22. Illustrator Submission :: Lea Taloc

Post by Chloe

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Lea Taloc has combined her passion for the kitchen and illustration to create beautiful works which often appear in food blogs and magazines. Through her art and graphic design techniques she is able to convey emotions and add visual embellishments to every day life. Lea Taloc’s work has a bright and airy feel to it which is refreshing and cheerful. 

If you would like to see more of Lea’s work, please visit her portfolio.

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23. Comics Illustrator of the Week :: Steve Skroce

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I remember being really impressed by the shots in the original Matrix film back in 1999, but I had no idea, back then, that a little known Spider-Man artist first helped bring that movie to life with pencil & paper. Steve Skroce previously worked with Lana and Andy Wachowski on an obscure horror comic book called Clive Barker’s Ectokid, which was his first major work as a comic-book artist. Before his time as Matrix storyboard artist, Skroce worked on a number of high profile superhero comics, including Cable, Gambit, X-Man, and Rob Liefeld’s Youngblood with comics legend Alan Moore. 

Today, Steve Skroce is putting out some of his best artwork yet on the creator-owned series We Stand On Guard with superstar writer Brian K. Vaughan. The story takes place a 100 years in the future and follows a group of Canadian citizens(Skroce is Canadian) defending their country from an invasion by The United States of America. The 4th issue just hit the stands and it appears that the first volume will wrap up with issue 6.

Skroce has drawn many storyboards for movies, including many more with the Wachowski’s. Some of those films include The Matrix Trilogy, V for Vendetta, Speed Racer, and Cloud Atlas. He also found time to make more comics, with a memorable 4 issue stint on Wolverine(2000) for Marvel and the independent series Doc Frankenstein(2004-present), which he co-created with artist Geof Darrow, for Burlyman.

Steve Skroce apparently doesn’t have much of a social media presence(he’s probably just too busy drawing!), so here’s a link to his wiki-page, if you want more information.

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

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24. Tough Guys Have Feelings Too

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by Keith Negley (Flying Eye Books, 2015)

The kind folks at Flying Eye sent over a preview of this book, thinking it was right up my alley.

It’s right up my alley.

The theme: yes. The design: yes. The snappy, bold, in-your-face look at tough guys plus the snappy, bold, in-your-face look at feelings: yes.

I chatted with Keith Negley, and learned a lot about this debut effort. I hope there’s more from him, and I hope you enjoy this peek into the brain of a picture book creator.

toughguys-4 toughguys-7Hi Keith! Can you talk about where this story came from? And what the process was like for its creation?

It all started when my son Parker who was 6 at the time stole a soccer ball from a friend during soccer practice and his friend got upset and they fought over it. Parker was angry at first, but then felt embarrassed and ashamed because he knew he did something wrong. I could tell he was struggling with how to handle all these new emotions that were happening to him at the same time. He walked away from the group and sat down to be by himself because he didn’t want anyone to see him cry. Later that night, I explained to him that it was totally natural to cry and that everybody does it. I told him sometimes even I cried, and he looked up at me and asked, “grown ups cry too?

It blew his mind that even adults cried because he thought it was something only kids did. I wished I had a book I could read to him that let him know that frustration and crying is a natural thing not to be ashamed of. The next day the idea for the book popped into my head.

You’ve done a lot of editorial illustration, but this is your first children’s book. Can you tell us the how and why you got into books?

I always liked the idea of making picture books for children, but it wasn’t until I became a parent and started reading a ton of picture books to my son did I realize there was a lack of the kind of books we enjoyed. Honestly the books I’ve been working on were born out of necessity because I wanted to read them and no one else had made them yet.

Your tumblr tag line is spectacular: part man, part negative space. Can you explain where that came from and why it represents you so well?

Ha, I find tragedy to be the greatest muse. The subjects I enjoy working with the most are the ones that break my heart. It’s cathartic somehow, and I feel like I really get to put a piece of me into the work. What ends up happening is I have a portfolio of rather depressing subject matter. But I’m always striving to create beautiful images with it. That juxtaposition is challenging and rewarding for me.

Add to that I tend to utilize negative space as a compositional tool fairly often and so I thought it tied the content in with the image making nature of the blog.

toughguys-9Who are some of your story heroes?

I’ve been a huge fan of Lane Smith for years and years. Jon Scieszka is another one. Ezra Jack Keats. Jack Kent’s Socks For Supper is one of my all time favorites as a kid and it still holds up today.

What do you remember about picture books from your childhood?

I remember my mom reading them to me and how she would make different voices for all the characters. I try to do that for Parker but he’s not into it at all unfortunately.

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What is your favorite piece of art hanging in your home or studio?

Not sure if this counts, but I like to make music in my spare time and I’m a huge nerd for vintage synthesizers. I currently have a 1979 Korg 770 sitting in my studio and just looking at it makes me very happy. I consider them works of art.

What’s next for you?

Trying to schedule some reading events for the fall/winter and I’m in the middle of working on my second book for Flying Eye which should be out in time for Father’s Day next year!

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Thank you, Keith! And vintage synthesizers totally count as works of art.

ch

PS: Congratulations to the winner of the The Story of Diva and Flea giveaway, Ashley! And thanks to Flying Eye for the images used in this post.

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25. Comics Illustrator of the Week :: Sonny Liew

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The story goes that legendary Uncanny X-Men scribe Chris Claremont discovered Malaysian-born artist Sonny Liew at a comics convention and got him his first big break into comics, landing Liew a gig illustrating Iron Man for Marvel. It was a small gig, just one illustration, but it set the stage for Liew’s bright future in comics! In 2004, Sonny Liew won the Xeric Award(an award for excellence in self-published comics) in 2004 for Malinky Robot. Later, he would go on to illustrate such titles as Slave Labor & Disney’s Wonderland series, Marvel’s Sense and Sensibility adaptation, and collaborate with artist/inker Mark Hempel on DC/Vertigo’s My Faith in Frankie.

Before studying illustration at Rhode Island School of Design, Liew attended college in Singapore(where he currently resides) and in the UK. His work has been featured in the critically acclaimed anthology Flight and he’s served as editor of the Southeast Asian comics anthology Liquid City.

Liew has been a celebrated artist at home, winning Singapore’s Young Artist Award in 2010, but recently he’s found himself in a bit of controversy over his latest book, The Art of Charlie Chan Hock Chye. The grant that supported the making of that book was withdrawn by the National Arts Council for containing sensitive topics. You can hear more about this story from the man himself at this book sharing session.

Right now is a great time to become a Sonny Liew fan, because he’s making some of the best comics art of his career on the newly relaunched Doctor Fate series with famed DC writer/editor/former-president Paul Levitz! I see that more people are catching onto this series, now that it’s up to issue 5, so hopefully that will continue to happen and we’ll get a nice, long Doctor Fate run out of Liew!

If you’d like to see more art and learn more about Sonny Liew, check out his blog here.

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

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