On Friday I mentioned about Mama and I working on a children’s book together. The writing has been going well. I have been doing research on marketing books, but I was terrified to get started on illustrations. My youngest sister, Ami, said that she might like to help, but was a little noncommittal about it. Well, on Sunday we jumped in.
Armed with a few inspirations and some vague ideas we began. I haven’t painted in about four years, and even that wasn’t very much. Anyway, we pulled out some oil paints a huge sketch pad, and just decided to try some things out.
It didn’t take long to realize that my sketching abilities are so rusty that I really needed Ami’s help. She is so good.
I’m amazed sometimes at the connection that I can have with this brilliant and talented sister of mine. At fourteen years my junior, I have sometimes had to make extra effort to relate with her…but the last three years have been easy. We have really gotten in stride with one another. I cherish having her still living at home, where I still get to see her at least once a week.
We learned a lot from this first illustration practice session. We will not be using oil paints in the finished product. It was all we had to use today, but neither Ami, Mama, or I like having to clean the brushes with paint thinner. Ugh. I’d never worked with oils before, and yeah, I won’t be doing that again. I’m definitely an acrylic girl. Or maybe multi media…we haven’t narrowed down our style completely.
We also ruled out completely digital artwork. I’m not saying we won’t use any digital artwork at all. We may, but there is a very steep learning curve to using Ami’s tablet. She has been using it for several years, but I’m not going to be able to enjoy using something like that for quite some time…and enjoyment is a main component of this whole process.
She was laughing quite hard at my expense as I fumbled around with the controls trying to get a very rudimentary sketch shaded and colored in a layered digital drawing. That process is definitely not for me (at least not yet).
One highlight was watching Ami come up with sketches of different expressions for one of our main characters.
It was so fabulously motivating. Another source of motivation? Knowing that I had told all of you about this project. It seems to have pushed the nerves away and helped push all of us forward with this. So, thanks for following along.