Month: August 2011

“Little toddler feet and hands all over my wall…”

Children’s book illustrator Patrice Barton begins a picture book with a spiral ruled notebook that she soon fills with ideas, tactics and to-do checklists related to the project. It’s almost as if the words come first. The drawings, which for her are a series of tireless explorations only a tiny fraction of which make it to the book, spring forth after she’s worked out the notions, notations and marching orders for herself. In the previous post she told how she assembled her scraps of sketches on tracing paper to develop finals for Sweet Moon Baby by Karen Henry Clark (Knopf Books for Young Readers.) This time she reveals the earliest stages of her artwork for the picture book Mine! by well-known children’s author Shutta Crum. Released in June, Mine! is Patty’s second book for Knopf.  Patty’s work for Mine! is being included in the Society of Illustrators Original Art Exhibit, 2011! At the end of our video interview minutes before class time at the Art School of the Austin Museum of Art Patty walked through the F&G’s for her third Knopf title, Rosie Sprout’s Time to Shine by Knopf editor Allison Wortche — due for publication in December. Here are sophisticated first graders, not babies or toddlers. With their glances, gestures and placements on the pages, Patty orchestrates a very funny elementary school drama of evil plans, remorse and redemption. Watching her interpret Wortche’s scenes as...

Read More

“I just drew baby after baby after baby…”

It was a treat, as always to visit with children’s book illustrator Patrice Barton.   In these two videos Patty tells us a little about her artwork for the picture book Sweet Moon Baby written by Karen Henry Clark (Knopf Books for Young Readers.) Patty graduated with a B.F.A in Studio Art from the University of Texas at Austin and worked as a graphic designer for the Texas Department of Public Safety and a freelance commercial artist before she decided to focus on children’s book illustration, the art specialty she loved most. She began with assignments from children’s magazines and educational presses. Gradually her client list grew to include major children’s trade publishers — Farrar,  Straus and Giroux Books for Young Readers and Scholastic Book Club, in addition to Knopf. Here are some of the takeaways  from our discussion last month. She says “yes” to the manuscripts that pull her in emotionally. She passes on assignments where the writing does not affect her. When illustrating a book, she plows into sketches, often working on tracing paper to discover her characters. She’ll place tracing paper over her drawings and sketch on it to build her compositions and scene interactions.  Much of this work she’ll throw away. The “keepers” she’ll puzzle out out how to fit into her scene composites. Her process  involves trial and error and a lot of drawing before she comes up with the images...

Read More

Build your interactive children’s book – win an iPad2!

Illustrators can now jump with both feet into digital publishing with the help of some free software and a contest launched by InteractBooks.com “What better way to showcase all that our InteractBuilder e-book software can do on the iPad and iPhone than holding a contest to find the very best interactive book it can make?” asks the Interact Books website . “And who better than you to produce this book by using your developer talent and our app software for the Mac and PC?” A Youtube video doesn’t do the reading experience justice, but an actual iPad encounter with The Tortoise and the Hairpiece by Don Winn, illustrated by Toby Heflin and distributed on the Apple iTunes store demonstrates how the touch screen interactions and subtle animations of an interactive book (let’s call it an i-book) make for a whole new storytelling language. I-books or interactive e-books aren’t quite the same as the e-books now making headlines for trouncing paperbacks in sales at Amazon.com. They’re a new animal, maybe a new art form nd it may be months or even years before anyone knows where this fusion of tactile interactivity and literacy is going, commercially or aesthetically speaking. Developers and a few publishers are delving into the format, but no leader for an interactive book-building engine or platform has emerged — yet. In the meantime Austin, Texas based-InteractBooks wants to push the innovation...

Read More

A Drawing Secret

Yes, please! I want to know the "crazy best" drawing secret!

Join us on Facebook!

Video art lessons!

Richard Robinson Painting Instruction

Click here to watch the video.

Recent Comments