InsideOut: The Loss

Howdy folks,

The lastest installment of InsideOut is up on the Forward's website and is in this week's print issue of the paper.

This week's piece is about grieving the loss of one's entire community and leaving an old life behind as one starts anew. Judy uses some wonderful images, using colorblindness and seeing colors in a black and white world as metaphors.

I started out, as usual, with a whole bunch of sketches. I played with themes of loss and loneliness and Judy's imagery and color.

The folks at the Forward chose the last sketch, emphasizing her isolation and loneliness, even in the midst of new discovery.

In my mind, the most important part of this image would be the use of color. My initial idea was to only render the sky in color - a vibrant, popping blue.
 This didn't feel quite right to me. There wasn't enough emphasis on the main character. She's having this moment of discovery, so perhaps she ought to be rendered in color as well.

Better still, but something about it felt a bit cold... so I added a warm tone beneath the black ink of the street.

This is ultimately what we decided to go with, but I also went a bit further with the color at the request of the art director... just to see what would happen. 

If the trees were green...

 Or one tree was green...
 Or the whole world was rendered in color...

This was a neat article to illustrate. The piece itself was touching, and the visuals in the text, exceptional. It's especially exciting when the imagery in a written piece practically begs to be illustrated.

Reworking a Character

Hey there folks,

I know that most of the recent posts have been for my editorial work, but don't think I've forgotten my children's book whatnot. Perish the thought!

I've been doing quite a bit of children's illustration - some work on a project I can't yet talk about as well as a bunch of personal projects. After returning home from the conference, I made a list of goals for the coming months. At the top of that list: revising and reworking. I decided to return to older projects - projects I've let sit for a while - and begin the long revision process. And I don't mean changing a comma here and there... I'm working on complete overhauls. First the text - scrapping manuscripts and rewriting from scratch. Then redoing the art - reworking old sketches, tossing said old sketches, and developing new scenes and new characters.

The first story I decided to tackle is an old favorite... one of my thesis stories.

The first order of business was to get to know my character again:

I did a whole bunch of sketches. Pages and pages. In some she's too tall, others too old, or too pointy, too round, too chin-y... and in others, just right. Somewhere along the way, a friend evolved. And finally, when I thought I knew her again, I did a full-color character study.

The Sun

Hey blog-readers,

The second article in the InsideOut series is live on the Forward's website! Check it out here.