Tuesday, 15 September 2009

Illustrating a Picture Book: Getting Organised

I worked hard on Bears on the Stairs again yesterday, listening to my talking book as usual. Below is my desk shot last night. I have to break for a haircut this morning, but then my target is finishing these three by tonight.

My final deadline is Oct 1st and I can't be even half a day late, as it's peak time for school visits and I'm in Selby first thing the very next morning! I love the visits, so it's great that bookings are coming in thick and fast: I'm already out every day from Oct 2nd to Oct 12th. Trouble is, there's a lot of associated admin to sort in advance, which I haven't got time for just now.

So, when John left at 5.45am Monday morning for a train to London, I got up too, and spent a few hours getting on top of admin before beginning drawing.

I went through back emails, creating an A4 sheet for each visit, with venue, contact details, train station, timetable, any ordered books etc etc. so I can spot which information is missing well in advance: I don't want to find myself the day before, not knowing the school's address!

By 10 o'clock it was all done and, feeling more relaxed, my drawing went well. Lots of deceptively time-consuming bits to negotiate though, like designing more pictures for the walls and books for the bookshelf:

Once again the pussycat (and this time Dad too) were left blind overnight. Both spreads are due for a blast of the dreaded fixative before I carry on, then I can put in the eye dots, as well as various patterns on things.


Damian Harvey said...

Really enjoying seeing this piece come together Lynne. Interesting seeing your end of day desk shots.

I'd do the same myself but other than putting the laptop in a different place or perhaps having a diferent cat sat next to it, it would look rather boring.

Joanne said...

Go, Lynne, go! I've been following your progress on these pictures with great interest. They're just beautiful (the colours take my breath away) and each of your decisions about pattern and detail seem just-right to me. I'm cheering you on from "across the pond" in Canada. It's going to be a wonderful book! Cheers from Joanne Stanbridge (aka Everdello)

Jessie said...

I don't know where you get all the energy, as for getting up at 5.45, well that's bloomin' early! I love the picture of the dad on the settee. It must be extremely satisfying putting the final dots in the eyes!x

Emily said...

I think the magic of your work is that it’s comforting in its illusion of simplicity... and then you show us the breakdown of effort and all the details, and it dawns on me just how genius this illusion is! Thanks for sharing and for all the details!

Jill said...

I am so full of admiration for the precision you achieve with pastels. They give your illustrations a warm soft glow, but none of the details are lost - brilliant.

Lynne Chapman said...

Thank you friends, and hello to Joanna from here on the other side of the pond.