Cover Out in Portland
I’m just back from a fantastic, restful camping trip on the beautiful Oregon Coast (see photo above), ending with a 2 night Portland stop-over (in a hotel – which, in my opinion, is the best way to end a camping trip).
While we managed to squeeze the camping into the dry days, our city visit was a little wet. One day, we ducked into Powell’s Books to avoid a downpour and I discovered something familiar in the children’s section:
I also found these and the illustrations were just so beautiful that I couldn’t very well leave them behind…
Dark Emperor & Other Poems of the Night, written by Joyce Sidman, is Illustrated by Rick Allen in many-layered lino prints, and is rich in colour and texture. The night scenes are vibrant and lively, and cheerfully coloured. A Monster Calls, written Patrick Ness, illustrated by Jim Kay, is equally exciting for its lack of colour and wonderful deep, dark spookiness; it is the kind of book that I was thrilled to read as a 12-year old.
Just look at this great composition and this lovely figure, so beautifully drawn.
A Monster Calls also has the added bonus of being nicely designed, and does a fine job tying in a lot of great texture-rich sketchy vignettes and scuff marks.
This post is part of a series documenting my process of illustrating the picture book Dream Boats (author Dan Bar-el, pub. Simply Read Books). The entire series of posts is archived here.
View a gallery of all the work-in-progress images including first sketches, reference material, mistakes, redraws, and tests, to final art at a much larger size, here.