WEEK 3 - Childrens Picture Books

As explained in post below I was very much looking forward to this week. I always harboured a wish to illustrate a picture book from an early age. Once again Lilla provided us with loads in inspiration & insight into this field. The mini brief was asking us to draw many birds with various expressions and develop them into a character.

The second half was to work on some hand type that read 'The Language of the Birds'  Again another area I really find enjoyable, and got quite carried away late one evening.

Well it turns out the story we would be basing our assignment on was a Russian folk story about Ivan who is taught wait for it...the language of the birds...by a magical bird after he saves her chicks. Then Ivan has a eventful journey to a new land where he ends up marrying the kings daughter after helping out with some irksome crows.

I had many ideas for layouts and which parts of the story I could illustrate, and did become very bogged down with it all. Lilla came to the rescue with a post on FB. She wanted us to interpret this story however we wished, and make it 'easy' for ourselves. We also had to be mindful of the deadline ( if we wanted to post in Flikr) and having spent a huge amount mental & physical energy on weeks 1&2 I decided to just step back a bit, and just ENJOY the JOY of this process and use it as an springboard.

I have decided that a few days produce client ready pieces is a tall order for me. I have time enough after MATS to go back and tweak, and explore more styles and techniques. And there will be other courses I'll be taking in 2014 to help me achieve my goals ( thats another post)

Back to Ivan - ummm character work for kids was always a challenge. So it was time for Pinterest- I looked at everything from early Disney to 1960's book covers. I think I drew Ivan about 20 times, with dots for eyes? with freckles?  with a neckerchief ?..and what sort of folkys outfit should he wear?

Towards the end I did seriously SERIOUSLY doubt my layout - maybe there were too many birds or the colours were too much? And I called into question what my hand type was really trying to convey. I tried to push them to one side and just remembered I did have lots of fun and had been kinder to myself. Further more I was here to learn by letting go of what I thought I 'SHOULD' do. I do adore my book cover and am already thinking of layouts for this story.