Monday, November 27, 2006

My Lair

I was posted these photos for the "Show us your rig" thread at CG Talk and figured I might as well post them here too. This is my bedroom "office."

Saturday, November 25, 2006

A Secret About Stories

I am now in the process of paring down my just written children's book manuscript, which is about 1,000 words "too long." Must... lose... description.... Or something like that.

I went to my local books-a-million today looking for Writing With Pictures: How to Write and Illustrate Children's Books by Uri Shulevitz and, of course, they didn't have it. Looks like I'll be ordering that one from Amazon. I hate buying books that I can't flip through first.

So what is this secret? It's not my secret, but a fine jewel of advice from an experienced Author/Illustrator Barbara Helen Berger. She is best know for her book Grandfather Twilight, which I really want to get my hands on.

The site uses frames so it is a little hard to link to. But here is the frameless page:

And here is the link to her main site: (The "secret" I'm talking about is under features> secrets>

At any rate, I'm very happy I discovered it. The idea of working from the pictures to tell the story seems the easiest way for me. A big thank-you to Barbara!

Monday, November 20, 2006

The River of Dreams

I'm pretty excited. You see, I've been scheming and dreaming for the past week, trying to come up with a good story for my first picture book. Last night I had a terrible time trying to get to sleep. Ever had your brain turned on so high you can't shut it down?

So as I lay in bed willing myself to sleep, the idea hit me. I was even able to come up with how to do it in 14 picture (spreads). I typically think in images not in words, anyway.

I was even able to finally convinced myself that writing it all down was more important than sleep. The funny thing is that my handwriting at 12:31 AM, with my glasses off, by the meager light of my alarm clock, when I'm half asleep, doesn't look much different from "normal."

This story is inspired by this image of mine, though it is mostly the setting and not these exact characters:

It's sort of a fairy tale. I do think it is going to make a good book though. Heck, all I want to do is get back to roughing it out at the moment.

Sunday, November 19, 2006

The Beginning of Hereafter

The purpose of this journal to to chronicle my journey from this uncertain point in my life (to put it mildly) to whatever I end up doing hereafter. At present I am roughly 6 months out of college, which incidentally is the length of the so-called "grace period" for student loans. In fact, I've already made the first payment on said loans, which was about as much fun as giving blood (I hate needles).

So what have I been up to since graduation? Illustration work, but not really the kind I want to do forever. In the past 6 months I've done 7 book covers. Most of these for small press publishers or individual authors. And while I don't mind doing this (as coming up with covers is rather interesting) I also don't love it. Part of the problem I think (and no offense is intended to the authors of these books) is that it takes a really special book to touch me in a way that the mere act of creating a cover for it is a passionate art. The problem with most fantasy books, and here I'm referring to wildly successful books published by big names too, is that they don't have this connection with me.

I hope that this journal can help me find my calling in the illustration world. I plan to update at least weekly, but hopefully a bit more than that. We shall see.