Monday, May 30, 2011

Illustration Friday - Asleep

For this week's 'Illustration Friday' word, "Asleep," I am using an image that I created back in April as a homework assignment for an illustrator's intensive that I attended at SCBWI's Indiana regional conference. The assignment was to create two to three 2-page spreads from "Goldilocks and the Three Bears." One of the spreads that I chose to do, shows the Three Bears discovering Goldilocks asleep in Baby Bear's bed.

This illustration went through at least four revisions before I arrived at the finished image. Before attending the intensive, I showed my work in progress to a critique group that I belong to and their comment on my first draft was that Goldilocks looked too sexy (see the image at right). As a reference for Goldilocks's sleeping pose, I had looked at Lisbeth Zwerger's version of "Thumbelina," and based my drawing on a similar pose that Zwerger used for her heroine, but what worked for Thumbelina, didn't seem to work for Goldilocks, so I went back to the drawing board.

In my next version, I tried to make Goldilocks look a bit younger and I've changed her body so that she is lying in a more level, less provocative pose. Everyone seemed to agree that this was a much better pose.

The next revision for this illustration was done  because of a change I made in an earlier spread in the story, where I decided to put Goldilocks into pants. This revision was fairly easy since the only thing involved was repainting the lower part of her body.

The final revision was made based on recommendations from Kerry Martin, the editor from Clarion books who was the conference's instructor for the illustrator's intensive.  She loved the Three Bears characters, she thought they were very cute, but she felt my Goldilocks character looked too much like an all-American girl and that there was nothing 'special' about her.  Another point that was brought to my attention was that the windows in the background didn't match the windows that I had shown in an earlier, exterior view of the bears' cottage.  So, this revision involved changing the background wall and windows and completely re-drawing Goldilocks.  It may not be evident in this pose, but notice that once again, I've tried to make Goldilocks look younger. One way that I accomplished this was to shorten her hair length and change it's color so that it's not such a 'hot' yellow.  I also changed the color of her sweater and added a ladybug pattern to her boots. These changes in the design of Goldilocks are more evident in one of the earlier spreads I revised where I show Goldilocks trying out the three chairs (see below).  In the chair spread, it's easier to see the changes in Goldilocks's appearance. Not only did, I shorten her hair, add a pattern to her boots, change the color of her clothing, but I also added a bunny design to her T-shirt.

Creating these spreads for the illustrator's intensive, and then attending the intensive was a great experience. It gave me a taste of what I imagine it would be like to work on an actual picture book project. Coming up with the concepts, designing characters and settings, submitting the work for review and doing the revisions are all components of creating a picture book. Hopefully, one day I'lll be doing it for real.

1 comment:

  1. What an interesting and educational process! Thanks for sharing it.