Hopscotch collection


Late last year a small illustration of mine was accepted for  'Hopscotch' –  A collection of short stories, poetry and artwork for children, published by Jelli-Beanz publishing:






Jelli-Beanz recently did a lil interview of lil me on their hopscotch blog -- A few questions about process and inspiration.  If you're interested, you can check it out here.


And if not, you can just print this out for colouring in! (If you are so inclined)




Hiccups / IF: Capable


These guys are certainly capable of driving this train!

This is an illustration I did for the background of a poster for the Winter Kids Festival happening here in Melbourne in July.

Sometimes, a project goes incredibly smoothly. An idea springs into your head, you sketch it with perfection, and it gets approved in a flash. Other times, you have a few hiccups along the way.

Last year I did some illustration work for the Northcote Kids Festival which was a lot of fun - I got to see my illustrations displayed across 2m high billboards! Quite the thrill. So when they asked me to do some more work for them, this time for the Winter Kids Festival, I was of course very excited.

The great thing about these festivals is thst the imagery is very whimsical - which I love but don't often have the chance to do. I came up with the following sketch which I was super happy with:


Unfortunately, the festival organiser was not super happy with it. Because it is being held at the Newport Substation, an old train station, he wanted it to involve a train (even though my brief was for a boat). OK, fair enough. I did two more (very quick photoshopped) sketches with trains:


But they decided they would prefer to have a more side on view. So, sketch #4:

...which was accepted. To me, this is the least interesting! It doesn't have the movement and energy the others do. But, that is the business of illustration. You don't always get your way. I added a bit more movement into the final, and luckily, I'm happy with the way it turned out! It hasn't been designed into a poster yet, but it will be fun to see my artwork on those big billboards again....

Sketches for my secret home

Here is an illustration I did recently for a kids theatre show called 'My Secret Home' by Curious Legends Theatre Company. I'm very happy with the way it turned out.

I thought I would show you a little bit of the sketching process behind this illo. The theatre piece is essentially about a boy's love of books and adventure. I was working with the director of Curious Legends Theatre Company, and his idea was to have the characters jumping out of the book. So here are some initial sketches:


so here is the more 'final' rough sketch I did because it's what he wanted:

and here is the sketch that I wanted... Even though the other sketches were more active, I felt that this one captured the cosy feeling of safety a child has in their self-made fort.

So as you can see, my first choice won out in this case. But it doesn't always happen that way! I was happy when he agreed with me in the end, but I think either one could have worked well.

I did the shading on the animals with graphite as opposed to coloured pencils which I used on the boy, to make them less intense so that they fade into the background more. I really had a great time doing this piece!

Christmas season

OK, so it's December 1st. Does that mean the Christmas season has officially started? I think so.

So, to celebrate that, I wanted to show you another step-by-step from my recently released book True Blue Santa. This is the final illustration from the book, and the only one which is set back in the Northern Hemisphere, and thus more "Christmassy" for all of you upside down people.

sketch of santa on his roof playing cricket with the reindeer

first pass with watercolours - lots of fun creating 'snow' with dabs of clear water on the drying paint
adding more colour

coloured pencil details & shading

collage finale!

top down view

a rather dark image of my drawing table / studio. I like affixing other illustrations from the project around me so that I am constantly referring to them.

Hope you enjoyed this step by step!

And so, if you've gotten this far, I will assume you are interested enough to know that True Blue Santa has been selling really well!! They printed 3 times the average print run and they have been snapped up by booksellers, with stock on the shelves quite scarce (and still the major Christmas shopping season around the corner of course) -- yowsa -- super exciting!