Picture book spread critique

  • Hi guys 😊
    I’m reworking some dummy books in preparation for Bologna book fair. Would like some feedback on this spread (haven’t added text yet but it’s a short sentence which will go on the top right page)
    The idea is a girl imagining all her fears about starting primary school. On this page she imagines that the teacher eats children. I would love to hear any thoughts.


  • Pro

    @eriberart It's very lovely! My first thought is I'm worried about the gutter. It seems it would cut right through the little girl.

  • @eriberart Yes I agree with @NessIllustration, I think the girl will be cut in the gutter. Maybe expand the edge of the image on the right side, so we can see more of the door? The kid running away from the page seems too close to the edge. This is also just a suggestion, but maybe you can really exaggerate the monster teacher, with her mouth open wider, teeth larger and expression even scarier. Just adding more drama. Otherwise, I really like your characters and the idea!!

  • Lovely. I especially adore the color palette on this piece. The story is charming too.
    I agree with the gutter issue.
    I also would like to see a bit mess around the classroom to add the chaotic feeling, something like books on the floor, chairs fall over on the ground, to get a feeling that the students ran out in panic.

  • @NessIllustration @Suji-Park @xin-li Thank you for the feedback! Yes I agree about the gutter, it goes right through her legs. Very silly of me, I always set guides so I can see the gutter when working, but I deleted the guide when I went to start colouring, and ended up moving things around after deleting the guide 😣
    I like the idea of adding a bit more exaggeration and chaos. Thanks! πŸ™‚

  • @eriberart I am starting to prepare for the Bologna book fair from this week as well. It would be lovely to meet you at the fair.

  • @eriberart As other people have already said, a bit more chaos and the teacher a little scarier. Paper and pencils could be falling from the girls hands too, to help show the movement of her being lifted. The colour palette is lovely

  • It's a really lovely style and I like the story concept! The only thing I can think to add is the teacher looks like she has one arm. You could have her holding another child with the right arm ready to eat them next. Something like this Quentin Blake piece. Good luck with the Bologna book fair!

    alt text

  • @xin-li Yes that would be lovely! I'll be there for the first 2 and a half days πŸ™‚
    @Carrie-Anne-Brown Thank you! Yes I like the idea of adding more chaos and things falling from her hands!
    @IanS Thanks! Haha yes she does look like she has one arm, I never noticed πŸ˜‚ I will have a play around tonight. I love that Quentin Blake illustration, the children's expressions are perfect hahaha

  • Teacher-3-web-low.jpg

    I've taken everyone's feedback on board and made some changes πŸ™‚

  • @eriberart I like the changes. The additional kid adds a lot!

    One thing I might suggest is to lean into the idea a little more. @Lee-White keeps saying go overboard and then dial back if you need.

    If you had the kid over the teacher's open mouth I think you would communicate the fear of getting eaten more. Without you saying that I would not have gotten that the teacher is going to eat the kid. Or you could have the teacher licking its lips. Something to make us think it is hungry!

  • @theprairiefox Thanks! I've been staring at this piece so long I think I need to step back and look at it with fresh eyes in a couple days πŸ˜‚ I'm always scared of over-working pieces!
    There will be text when I'm done, something along the lines of "The teacher thinks children are scrumptious", or "The teacher loves to eat children," etc, but I would like it to be clear without the text too so I'm going to try and exaggerate the teacher and her mouth and teeth a bit more πŸ™‚

  • @eriberart this is great. I love the color palette. I think you could push the girl in the bottom lefts expression a bit more to show how scared she really is. The teacher as well could have a more open mouth to really feel like she wants to eat them. But I don't think you'll really need text if it just becomes really clear she's going to eat them. Great work!

  • @KaraDaniel Thank you! I will try and push these things a bit more πŸ™‚ It's a spread from a dummy book I am working on!

  • @eriberart cool! I'd love to see it. If you would like to share it please do πŸ™‚

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