Thursday, December 10, 2009
Sunday, December 6, 2009
Some really cool kids' drawings for the assignment that we gave: "Snap, crackle and pop".
I have heard many times, mostly from adults, that my portfolio lends itself to children’s book illustration. I had never had an opportunity to show my illustrations to a bunch of children and ask their opinion, though. This week I finally met my audience. I visited an elementary school where my mother-in –law, Betsy Wish, works as an art teacher. We had 5 classes that day, 4th grade, two 3rd grades and two 1st grades.
Honestly, I was a little nervous to meet the children, because it’s quite intimidating to be standing in front of so many kids that look at you with respect and need to hear something smart and funny from you. Luckily, I wasn’t alone and Betsy showed me a way to engage the kids in a discussion.
I showed them my illustrations, and then Betsy and I asked different questions such as: What do you see in the picture? Why is she/he doing that? Can you tell me what happened before/after of what you see in the picture? The kids absolutely loved it. They raised their hands even before I finished putting the artwork up and were already ready to answer questions before they even had a good look at the picture. That was really funny. Most of the time they guessed pretty soon what was happening in the pictures. They also came up with a lot of other explanations/scenarios that I didn’t have in mind when I was creating the illustrations. It was really enjoyable to see that my illustrations can generate that much enthusiasm and creative thinking. One little boy even told me in all seriousness that he will write a children’s book and hire me as an illustrator. I said, “I will be waiting.”
It was also very curious to see that all the kids, without exception, wanted to draw and didn’t care about the results too much. They simply enjoyed the activity. So at what point do they stop drawing and start being afraid of drawing? At what point does it become engrained in their minds that their drawing is not good enough and they might as well drop it? That makes me so sad. I too had that fear and didn’t do much drawing from the age of 10 until about 20.
At the end of each class I handed out my postcards and they asked me to autograph the back of the cards. For them I’m famous!
Saturday, November 21, 2009
Don't Provoke a Porcupine!
Don't Kiss a Crocodile!
Don't Irritate an Elephant!
Finally finished these three new illustrations for my children’s book illustration class. The assignment was to create three illustrations with the same character in all of them (one full page illustration and two spot illustrations). The poem that I worked with was “My Uncle Looked me in the Eye”. The challenge is that the poem doesn’t really have any descriptions, only warnings not to annoy different animals. I decided to invent all the scenarios for the lines of the poem that I chose.
“Don’t provoke a porcupine”
“Don’t kiss a crocodile”
“Don’t irritate an elephant”
Even though it could be hard to come up with initial ideas, it also gives you all the freedom and opportunity to read between the lines and come up with some interesting solutions to engage the reader. This is what illustration is all about – a lot of thinking and a lot of drawing, painting, etc.
Tuesday, October 27, 2009
These are some people from the sketch group. Sometimes it's much more interesting to draw them than a model. That wasn't true with these particular models, though. They were very good.
Friday, October 9, 2009
This is my first illustration for my children's book class. The assignment was to first write a sentence with alliteration for an alphabet book. Then, we needed to create an illustration of the sentence featuring animals.
Thursday, October 8, 2009
Wednesday, September 23, 2009
Last Saturday I attended the SketchCrawl session in Cambridge. SketchCrawl happens on the same day (once in 3 months or so) all over the world. It’s a pretty interesting event. I met some nice people and we had a fun time sketching at the cafes and bars, talking and laughing.
Our last destination was a bar in Cambridge. I was pleasantly surprised that people really respond and appreciate you doing your fast doodles. I was asked by some guys to sketch them and while doing that I met some more fun people who were curious to see me draw. We talked about drawing and painting, writing and all that artistic stuff.
Anyway, it was fun to see how excited people are to see you draw and I think my husband Ben and I made some new friends at that bar. How strange…