Setup of children’s book Purple Ribbons

By heather at 8:17 am on Wednesday, November 1, 2006

Sketches have been approved and the final artwork is underway for “Purple Ribbons” by Cristina Guarneri! Here’s a sneak peak at the illustrations as they are coming together.


30 minutes : trimming down 18 pieces of Arches Watercolor Paper (300 G/M2 Cold Press Medium) to accommodate final artwork size plus an extra 2-3 inches for bleed AND room to tape down the paper to the masonite board. I like to lay out the masonite boards with the illustrations paired up in spreads, so I can be sure I haven’t missed any and can see how they look as I go.


2 hours : transferring the 18 approved sketches to Arches Watercolor paper using a light table and lightly tracing the sketch glowing through with a sharp HB Pencil. (Rant : don’t buy cheap pencils, there’s nothing more frustrating than sharpening and sharpening and sharpening and having the wood crumble to bits) Pencil crayons can also be used, light yellows / browns can be nice if you don’t mind the lines showing, but they are harder to erase.


30 minutes : masking tape down the Arches W.C. paper to the masonite boards. Then I go over each page with a kneaded eraser to be sure the graphite isn’t too heavy / dark where light colors will be painted.


1.5 hours : the fun of the first wash. The sloppier the wash the better, I really enjoy bleeding & cauliflowers & scratching the surface & salting the paper to get some great textures in this stage. But, I also like to keep the colors as clean as possible here, particularly yellows as they are hard to get back if they are muddied. The benefit of illustrating all the pages at once is that if I mix a color I particularly like, I can use it across the whole book without worrying about remixing it… and I can be sure to balance my colors on each spread.
Alright campers, give me another week and I’ll upload some more pictures of the progress!

Filed under: work in progress, business of illustration

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