Friday, 4 September 2015

A Second Chance to Get it Right...

I've got another Skype rehearsal of my 'how to design picture book characters' workshop this afternoon. This time at least I have the chance to spend a bit of time going through it in advance, reading it aloud. It's amazing what a different that makes - lots of last minute jiggery-pokery is needed to make things flow naturally.

The Skype practices are a bit of a performance logistically. I have to use our laptop to deliver the face-to-face lesson, for my producer Clif, in Denver. I need prompt notes though, which will be on the main computer, by the side. So far so good, but I also regularly use examples of my finished illustrations (scans of which will ultimately be edited into the lessons, so the student will see them on screen). Trouble is, for me to see what I'm talking about during the rehearsal, each illustration needs to be brought up on the computer as I go along, squeezed in alongside the prompt notes. It doesn't make for easy, uninterrupted flow.

We haven't time to run though everything (7 lessons at 20-25 minutes each is a long time), so I will perform a single lesson, as a test, which will also give us an idea of how accurate my original timings were. I am either going to choose a lesson on facial expressions...

...or on creating movement, as those lessons refer less to my archive illustrations, which will definitely help. One other snag though, is that I will be drawing lots and lots of demonstration sketches (I also need to make room for paper, in front of 2 computers squeezed onto one desk), but Clif won't be able to see my sketching at all - just me talking away about what I am doing.

There's no way round that really, but Clif says he is mostly interested in the flow of me talking and the timing - he trusts that the drawing demo side will be fine. It's making the talking bit run quite naturally from one teaching point to another, as if I'm just chatting to a friend.  I've got to get good enough at it that I don't ramble, so we can see more clearly how long each lesson will take.

Better get back to it then!

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