Love seeing everyone's amazing Fairytale Inns on this thread! I painted with watercolor for last month's prompt...this time I decided to practice my digital skills.
Learned about books from the publishing side, back when you could run your hand across a letterpress page and the illustrations were preseparated art. John Singer Sargent makes me cry.
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RE: MARCH CONTEST: Fairy-Tale Traveler
This is my first time posting, so I hope it comes through all right. This prompt really motivated me. I haven't taken my watercolors out since the pandemic started (sooooo very long ago)...I had to keep pulling sodden dust bunnies off my brushes and paints as I worked on this. But here she is, Petal, leaf fairy traveler, along with her caterpillar.
RE: AUGUST CONTEST: It's the first day of school for Albert!
I've run out of time to work on this prompt and won't be submitting to the Arena, but I wanted to share as far as I got. Next weekend, I hope to finish the monsters (the grey silhouettes) and play around with the layers. But for now, here is "The First Day of Monster School."
RE: How To Deal With Fear Of Success
@Randi-Gordon I’m a few months behind in my podcast-listening, so I haven’t listened to this particular episode yet. But…
You’ve probably heard about imposter syndrome (which can lead people to self-sabotage) as there has been so much discussion about it the last few years.
Specific to what you’ve written though: Have you ever revisited the dummy you submitted to the publisher? Were you comfortable with how you handled everything? Was there a page turn or transition or anything else that you felt you hadn’t exactly nailed as well as you would’ve liked? Have you considered just reworking and submitting it to other publishers?
Sometimes intuition kicks in and we instinctively make the right decisions even if the logic behind it doesn’t come for years after. As far as the publisher that interviewed you, were they asking you to change what you considered to be a wordless picture book by adding text (you said you hadn’t written a manuscript for it). Or was there anything during the interview that might have turned you off a bit towards them (i.e. spinach in the art director’s teeth)?
Even just getting so much feedback from a publisher is a success.
Your success isn’t contingent on how much or how little you family supports you. It may be a struggle emotionally, but in the end it’s up to you.
RE: Work/study/kids/life balance rant and questions
Reading others comments about five minutes a day just reminded me of something. When my kids were in elementary school and I packed their lunches, I would draw comics on their brown paper bags each day. Their school discouraged bringing lunch boxes, and I didn't want my (food allergic) kids to confuse their bags with anyone else's.
You would not believe how wonderful Crayola colored pencils look on brown paper.
RE: How to make it to the top 16
Jeremiahbrown, you've analyzed it perfectly.
There's a certain amount of chance in which judges will review the submissions (yesterday Jake even mentioned he hadn't agreed with Will on one that made it into the Sixteen), and a greater chance on who/how many SVS members will be able to attend and vote...and the chance that everyone has anticipated the judges and attendees' preferences, so that the voting is even more competitive. Critique arena is indeed fun and incredibly helpful. The chance aspect of it all is good practice for submitting work as well, because art directors and editors are all going to have their own preferences.
Pigs-in-a-Blanket B&B, April Prompt
My first idea was to draw “Beauty’s Sleep-Inn,” covered with thorny roses and with as many traditional fairy characters as I could fit. There’d be a cut-away where the Big Bad Wolf had just blown down a wall, the Princess lounging on a stack of mattresses behind him, Sleeping Beauty’s stepmother holding a mirror, Hansel and Gretel chomping on the gingerbread foyer, Rapunzel looking down from the main tower, the Emperor, Cinderella’s pumpkin carriage, a knight attempting to pull Excalibur from a stone, a dragon, and a stork carrying a dwarf. I desperately wanted to include Rumpelstiltskin trying to claim his reservation at the inn with the manager reading off a list of not-quite Rumpelstiltskin names. But at this point I realized I’d gone overboard and needed to simplify.
Pigs in a Blanket B&B/All You Can Eat BBQ
I decided on a mash-up between the Three Little Pigs and Hansel and Gretel. A bit sinister, yes, but my sons pointed out that Hansel and Gretel’s story involves human cannibalism, and that's pretty sinister as well.
The building is made of straw, sticks and brick, just as the Three Pigs would want. I had to experiment with the horizon line to get a clear view of both entrances.
I realize that I wandered away from the perimeters of the prompt, but wanted to share!
RE: Where to send people that ask you to illustrate their children's book
I would really hesitate recommending anyone to Fivver. I know there are many reputable creators there, but there are also illustrators who rip off other people's work. If the person asking for illustrations is thinking of a 12 page booklet (as opposed to 16 or other multiple of eight) they are probably just learning about publishing and won't be equipped to advocate for their book.
I haven't used Reedsy.com myself, but the company says it does vet their freelancers.
They might also look on social media...there are groups (such as Children's Book Authors and Illustrators group on Facebook) where illustrators promote themselves.
If they want to stay local, they might contact the nearest college....also many areas have regional or city art associations.
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RE: Which way should I go? Kidlit411 contest
The rhythm in A is wonderful...I also like how you've played with the type.
As for B, it has a unique perspective, looking downwards at the telephone lines. But over the years, I remember a lot of telephone lines being used for the banner. I used to think it was a requirement (Bird on the Wire: nod to Leonard Cohen) to show a flock of birds on telephone wires.
So my vote is for A.
RE: Help! My art was stolen and I don't know how to proceed
You might first just email to tell them you own all the rights to the art, it was stolen from you and that you want it taken down (I had a similar situation, and the company did stop without me having to get stressed and into legalities--although they did continue stealing from other artists).
Another thought (beyond a cease-and-desist letter or hoping Disney will bring in its heavy-fisted lawyers) is to take it to social media. Jim Yellowhawk did this a few years back when a company was stealing American indigenous art (including his) under the guise of supporting the people (the company was in Vietnam, if I remember correctly). He called them out in his Facebook posts, which were shared a lot. His followers complained to the company and commented on the company's social media. I doubt it did much good concretely, but he did educate and engage his following, and it was probably a good way to vent. Silver lining.
RE: I’d appreciate help with this book cover! Please stop by if you can lend an eye.
@KathrynAdebayo Wow...your art is breath-taking.
I understand design-wise what people are suggesting about making the tree a bit smaller, but keeping it large seems to better reflect the content of the book. The tree could be a bit lighter in value (how great is that white spine type going to look against that tree!).
The title seems too close to the top for me. I would pull the canopy down a smidge on the front, or maybe add a branch, so that you can still have the type knock out of the leaves. Maybe also lower the field's horizon to give the sky as much space as it has here in this original.
Because your handling of the sky is so dynamic, I'd suggest having the boy's shirt and pants be closer in value so they don't compete with what's going on in the sky.
RE: Private Art Tutoring Rate?
That the parents are artists and have other children doesn't really add into the equation...their choices aren't your responsibility. I totally understand the impulse to take their circumstances into consideration, but you need to do right for yourself and respect the value of your time and experience. If you want to contribute to young artists, you could probably find a local charity that helps kids with less opportunity to create.
You might want to make it clear that you need to have a quiet work area with the child, and that the other children will be occupied elsewhere during the lesson (if they are younger than the 11 year old). Otherwise, you might have them joining in.
RE: Critique for map
You've give it a lot of depth (hard to do for a map!). Very cool how the map extends behind the ruled borders.
The white around the type really stands out. Perfect!
The only thing that doesn't work as well for me is the white highlights (such as on the raised hills in the field areas). Just the line to describe the hills would be enough, and the white wouldn't compete with the type.
RE: New portfolio illustration. How would you improve it?
And now I want blue hair like the princess! So lovely!