Posts Tagged ‘illustration’

I am planning on sending some of my children’s book stuff in to a publisher for review soon (I am not in any way published yet), and so I had to make a real life children’s book dummy! I remember learning about making them in one of my BYU classes, but how well does anything stick if you don’t practice it after years? (Let’s be honest) Therefore, I had to do some refreshing research for some minor details, and after a fair amount of work, voila!


Let me tell you though – a dummy is supposed to be just a rough version to indicate what a finished book might look like, so it should be a lot easier then, right? WRONG. It’s a TON of work! Planning, planning, organizing, composing, etc. etc. Then after all your spreads are mapped out, you still have to print it in the correct order so that it works when it’s all folded. Then, you must sew it together as well.  Here is what I did just in case anyone was searching for answers like I was . . .

1.I divided the text onto pages based on what I’d like to illustrate (Usually 32 pages in a book including title page (s), copyright, etc)

2. Did thumbnail sketches of the pages

3. A little tighter rough sketches in photoshop that display the composition and pacing of each spread (I like that on photoshop you can budge and alter without redoing the whole sketch)

4. Numbered all the pages and added the typed text in the appropriate spots

5. Then I printed it in the most absurd order so that I could stack all the spreads and fold it just once (like a taco). Another option would be to make multiple folds that you would then have to sew together and make a jacket for . . . which was too complicated for me. I’m no book binder.

FullSizeRenderThis is how the pages ended up being aligned. Print the pages in these combinations and you should be able to fold it all in order.

6. Sew time! I used my biggest needle and floss. I believe the thread just needs to be waxed for strength. The best explanation I can give is this video that I used. Basically, just make an odd number of evenly spaced holes down the spine to start off, then sew in and out through them. The more holes you have the stronger.  I used 5 holes, and I also opted out of the extra jacket.

IMG_5002 IMG_5003

7. I glued the blank sides of the pages together and trimmed the edges so it all looked even. The End! So easy right? Ha ha.

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They Did All Eat (smaller)

This is my most recent project, and woo! It was fun. I really enjoyed mixing my two audiences – the religious folk and the youngun folk. The style is clearly more stylized for children, although I think it can appeal to the grown-ups too. I’m wondering if I should use this style/medium more because I liked the process and results so much. I used a permanent black pencil for the lines, and the rest was gouache paint.

The subject is, of course, Jesus Christ feeding the multitudes (story found in Matthew 15).

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This is the couple of my previous “Partridge in a Pear Tree” origami piece. Maybe a little more unrecognizable, but that’s where the title comes in to clarify . It’s called “Two Turtle Doves”! Now there you go. Both are oil on panel.

I decided to photograph some of the main steps as I did this one…

1. I always start off any serious project with sketches for composition and sketches for color. If I have a good color comp, it makes the painting go  so easy. I’m not fiddling around with color anymore because I already know what I want. In this case, I really wanted an overall blueish painting, as my partridge was overall yellow.

2. Then I follow my sketchbook sketches and sketch out my painting on the surface I chose (this one is a gessoed wood panel)

3. I did a blue acrylic wash to encourage color harmony before I started painting.

4.Next is some rough acrylic painting. I know I don’t have to get all the details in perfectly because I am going to go over it with oils. It’s a lot easier to get those smooth blends in oil painting than acrylic anyway. So I am just getting the main colors in – that way if I don’t paint all my oil layer completely opaque, the color showing through works.

5. Oil time! I started off similarly to my acrylic layer by doing a blueish/whiteish glaze over the whole thing, just to make it wet (I used Liquin, which dries kinda fast). I prefer starting with painting wet into wet to make easier blending. I started building layers upon layers with different glazes and smaller and smaller brushes…

6. Then I finished off the smallest details with the most opaque of oils and painting wet on dry. Voila! (you may have to wait a day before you can paint on dry surface) It is finished!

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Howdy!  I just created a small print store on my art website. There are only a few options right now, but hopefully one day things will expand.  In the meantime, basically any art of mine you see is printable – so I can make special print orders for you. And a ton of original artwork is available too!  Whatever floats your boat really. Thanks for reading! Here’s the link:






Secret Garden - acrylic

Secret Garden – acrylic


The Rabbit in the Moon - ink and watercolor

The Rabbit in the Moon – ink and watercolor


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During my time in the Illustration department at Brigham Young University it was beat into my head to practice figure drawing, practice figure drawing, practice PRACTICE! – just like that. Figure drawing helps your overall skills as a sketching artist. It also helps you draw more convincingly as an illustrator (whether you stylize your characters or not). So . . . I haven’t been as good as I should since graduating at keeping up figure drawing, but I am determined to try and do some figure drawing every week from now on.  There are figure drawing sessions open to anyone at BYU where models come in, and I was recently able to do some of these there.  If anything, it is a wonderful fun time!

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I just found some more illustrations from my Santa Fe project! Here are a few more of these fun photography/illustration hybrids.

Santa Fe 1 Santa Fe 8 Santa Fe 10(ps- I hope this is not sacrilegious in any way. There is no symbolism!)

Oh, also, I AM selling a lot of the artwork that can be seen on this blog, so please write a comment or contact me if you’re interested in an original or print.


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Sometimes random freelance art jobs are extremely fun.  I love taking them on here and there for the variety.  This was a project I just finished for an album cover/logo for a song about how Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas all get mashed together. I thought the idea for the song was pretty clever and realized the illustration for it would be fun, so I gladly took on the job.

For this project I first sketched it out just with a regular graphite pencil in my sketchbook. Then I scanned it in to the computer, tweaked the contrast a bit, and colored it all digitally in photoshop with my tablet. If you use “multiply” on your current layer when you color you don’t harm any black lines. It works great.


oween color finish without background

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I have three more slots available in my Monster Safari future book. So in my upcoming show in Salt Lake City, I am letting people vote for their three favorites out of these six monsters. Mind you, they are supposed to be for kids.

Just a side note – These were ink and colored pencil sketches done on brown toned paper (much like a paper bag). I love working on paper like this because it really makes the colors pop. If you’re an artist, try carrying around some toned paper and just a few colored pencils, like a white and black.

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Jeep Safari

In order to get to each habitat, you have to travel with Professor Monstro in his monster jeep. This is the latest addition to my show! (check out the rest in the BFA show tab and if you’re in Salt Lake be sure to stop by to see it in person at the public library December 9-January31)

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Woohoo! Check it out! It’s Professor Monstro-the best monster tour guide around! If you want to see some cool monsters in the Savannah, Mountains, and Jungle, just click on the new BFA show page above and let him take you on a tour! This show is just the beginning. One day you will see it in a children’s book :).

Professor Monstro (the tour guide)

Professor Monstro (the tour guide)

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