Children’s Book Illustration

Illustration Institute Inspires

Posted by on Aug 3, 2017 in Children's Book Illustration, Drawing, Illustration, Maine College of Art, Peaks Island | 4 comments

This month has been jam-packed with visitors and events. I am inspired and jazzed about the new Illustration Institute’s Marilyn Faison Artist Residency. There are two houses on Peaks Island available to illustrators and authors for retreats, and they are just up the hill in the woods behind my house. This is the Stone Cottage, nestled in the pines at the top of Tolman Heights. I brought over a pie to Henrik and Wing, artists/residents for two weeks. They had decent time to be residential, like take strolls and dunk in the ocean. We showed them our favorite cook-out spot. The light...

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Book friends unite

Posted by on Jul 19, 2017 in Children's Book Illustration, Drawing, Illustration, Peaks Island, Portland Public Library, Travels | 0 comments

It’s no secret that most children’s books are about relationships.  Author Lyn Smith and I traveled recently to visit fellow book creator,  Jo Miles Schuman.  Lyn and Jo met via Maine Authors Publishing and I’m always down to meet fellow book makers. We found her homestead along a winding road with acres and acres of rolling woods and wetlands beyond. We ducked beneath swooping swallows nesting in the dark rafters of her barn and into a sunny studio where Jo served a scrumptious rhubarb pie and carrot cake. Double dessert, yes please. Her studio is filled with collections...

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Book Friends

Posted by on Jul 12, 2017 in Art Classes, Book: Here Come the Humpbacks, Book: Seven Days of Daisy, Children's Book Illustration, Drawing, Illustration, Maine College of Art, Pastels, Peaks Island, Travels | 0 comments

Way back in 2009, I visited the Friends School of Portland to read my first children’s book, Seven Days of Daisy. Friends do make the world go ’round. Fast forward to a recent sunny Tuesday, when I headed off island to visit their Stories by the Forest program. When I arrived at the Peaks Island dock, it was oddly quiet. Where is everybody? Well, yours truly had missed the boat! The summer schedule change got me! So, I promptly called the trusty water taxi. Here she comes, zipping across a placid Casco Bay. I made it to Cumberland Foreside in a timely manner and set up my table...

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Tillie Time

Posted by on May 2, 2017 in Children's Book Illustration, Drawing, Illustration | 0 comments

I recently illustrated the cover of Mary Atkinson’s second middle grade novel, Tillie Heart and Soul, that just earned a starred review from Kirkus! As soon as I heard that Tillie was a roller skater, I was into it. After reading the manuscript, I began a little page of doodles. Then I began doing my homework for visual research on skater culture. And did more sketches. Tillie is a fifth grade girl living with her Uncle Fred. She’s an awkward but tough kid, and gets her share of scrapes. I wanted to show energy here, with hair and limbs flying out of the image frame. A new girl...

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Prickly Picture Book Program on Peaks

Posted by on Apr 12, 2017 in Book: Island Birthday, Book: Porcupine's Promenade, Children's Book Illustration, Drawing, Illustration, Peaks Island, Portland Public Library, Publisher: Tilbury House | 2 comments

Many thanks to the Peaks Island Branch Library for hosting our Prickly Picture Book Program on Saturday morning. I couldn’t resist making something sweet and prickly, too. (Do try this at home, a pile of warm brownies pierced with toothpicks is a very fun sculpture to make and then eat!) It was a pleasure to have Lyn Smith, the author of A Porcupine’s Promenade visit Peaks Island. As a reading specialist, Lyn enjoys reading aloud.  She makes these porcupine noises that I just cannot fathom how. I talked a bit before making a visual presentation, about how I came to illustrate...

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100 days smarter

Posted by on Feb 23, 2017 in Book: Porcupine's Promenade, Children's Book Illustration, Drawing, Illustration, Pastels, School Visits | 4 comments

Last week I had the good fortune to visit another stellar school: Kennebunkport Consolidated School. Author Lyn Smith and I received a warm welcome from first grade teachers and set up in Mrs. Roberts’ room. There was evidence all over the place that students here are on the ball. I need one of these oversize pencils as a prop, since I’m always talking about keeping our eyes and pencils sharp. We attended the Friday morning assembly, where I spied this ingenious banner in the hall. The entire school was celebrating the first 100 days of learning. After the pledge, the school...

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