Riley’s Lost Tooth | Book Launch Party in San Antonio!

By heather at 1:06 am on Monday, March 22, 2010

heather castles riley's lost tooth illustrations

Diane Cantrell will be hosting a book launch for our latest children’s book, Riley’s Lost Tooth. If you are in the San Antonio area this weekend, here are the details if you want to meet the author and pick up a signed copy of Riley’s Tooth.

heather castles riley's lost tooth illustrationsWhen : March 27th 11:00 A.M.- 3:00 P.M.

Where : The Friendly Spot Ice House
943 S. Alamo St. San Antonio, TX 78205
Ph. 210-224-2337
King William Area San Antonio, TX

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Riley’s Lost Tooth | Review by Swamy

By heather at 1:41 am on Wednesday, March 17, 2010

riley's lost tooth children's book coverDiane passed along to me the first review of our book, Riley’s Lost Tooth, over at Swamy Reviews. Here’s an excerpt from the review :

“The book is colorfully illustrated and the story is simple but delightful. Riley, a small girl of about 5 years loses her first tooth. When she shares that news with her grandma, the pups in the house get worried and start searching for the lost tooth. A tooth fairy appears and assures them that it is a natural process and Riley will in fact get a regular, permanent tooth in its place.

….The book is well written and the illustrations are beautiful. The book will definitely appeal to all children (including children at heart like this reviewer) and their parents / grandparents / elder siblings and other care givers. Strongly recommended as an educational gift.”

Riley’s Lost Tooth is due to be launched in just a couple weeks!

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Riley’s Lost Tooth | The books arrived!

By heather at 1:21 am on Monday, March 1, 2010

heather castles riley's lost tooth illustrations

riley's lost tooth children's book cover Eeeeee! So excited, my copies of Riley’s Lost Tooth (Written by Diane Cantrell, Illustrated by moi) arrived in the post! Hera was right into them, opening up each one up, flipping through the pages, then declaring “The End.” I’m really pleased with how they’ve turned out, Brown Books did a great job. Riley’s Lost Tooth now available online at Amazon.com. Book launch party in San Antonio is planned for March 27th… I’ll post details later!

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Riley’s Lost Tooth | Animated Trailer!

By heather at 3:07 am on Thursday, February 4, 2010

Wow, I just watched the trailer for Riley’s Lost Tooth… I’ve never had an animated trailer made of my work before, is a bit weird and cool at the same time seeing your characters come alive and move! Here’s the Riley’s Lost Tooth trailer on YouTube. RLT is currently at the printer, am waiting eagerly to see how the finished product turns out!

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2009 Illustrations | Year In Review

By heather at 10:14 pm on Tuesday, December 29, 2009

heather castles 2009 illustrations

As another year fast approaches its end, looking back I realize how busy a year 2009 has been! I kept my paintbrush and pencil busy with completing just under 100 illustrations… wowsers, that’s a new illustration every three days! The illustrations include three children’s books (Celebrate! by Rubicon Publishing, Riley’s Lost Tooth by Diane Cantrell, and Spotty & Eddie Visit PercÚ by Lisa M. Chalifoux), a collection of green themed illustrations for ImageZoo, and several more little illustrations for my illustrated diary of Hera’s outfits. Looking forward to 2010!

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Riley’s Lost Tooth | Off to the printer!

By heather at 2:46 pm on Friday, November 13, 2009

riley's lost tooth children's book cover fairy dogs puppies illustration watercolour

All of the hard work is done… the InDesign files are packaged, zipped, and FTP’d, and now Riley’s Lost Tooth is now in the hands of our printer! It’s been exactly twelve months to the day, from my initial quote for the illustrations, to reading the manuscript, to sketches, to watercolor painting, to layout and finally to preparing the files for the printer. Even now the journey isn’t complete as copyright has to be arranged, ISBN registered, and a myriad of checks to go through on the printer’s end before it is finally in our hands. But on my end of things the process is finished and I just have to wait patiently to see how it all turns out! While it feels like the end of the process, it’s actually just the start for this book, whose life will start once it actually hits the shelves in a few months.

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Riley’s Tooth | Sneak peek at final illustrations…

By heather at 8:00 am on Saturday, August 22, 2009

riley's tooth dogs toothfairy watercolour children's book illustrations

I’m a little over halfway through stitching together the scans of my watercolour illustrations for Riley’s Tooth, written by Diane Cantrell (Author of Good-bye, Baby Max). I’m really pleased with how the illustrations have turned out, especially since they are entirely in watercolour (a first for me as normally I switch to pencil crayon for the finer details.) Here’s a preview of three of the sixteen illustrations for Riley’s Tooth.
riley's tooth dogs toothfairy watercolour children's book illustrations

riley's tooth dogs toothfairy watercolour children's book illustrations

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Riley’s Tooth | Second Watercolour Wash

By heather at 8:48 pm on Tuesday, May 19, 2009

diane cantrell riley's tooth children's book illustrations watercolour dogs puppies

Here’s a second peek at the illustrations I’m working on for Diane Cantrell’s children’s book, tentatively titled Riley’s Tooth. This is a really enjoyable stage as it’s where I make a lot of the decisions about what colours everything will be. I generally have a good idea when I start out, but finding just that right shade of colour happens when I mix the paint in the palette… for instance, I knew I wanted the fairy to have blue hair, but it wasn’t until I started mixing colours that I came up with the idea to paint her hair with aqua streaks to mimmick a swirl of toothpaste.

I like to try new things with each new children’s book, and with these illustrations I am emphasizing textures with watercolour techniques such as salting (to give clothing/fabrics interesting textures) and dropping clear water to create flowers in the colour (for magical sparkles around the tooth fairy.) These photos I took over a week ago, and since then the paintings are much more detailed. Will try to post another peek soon!

p.s. You may have noticed the big pink dog… I like to bring sub-stories (secondary visual stories within the illustrations that aren’t in the original manuscript) into illustrations as they are fun for kids to spot, things such as having bugs doing silly things in the background. This sub-story is that one of the dogs really doesn’t like the tooth fairy, and tries to swat it with a fly swatter… only to get magically turned into a fluffy, pink puff-dog for the rest of the book!
diane cantrell riley's tooth children's book illustrations watercolour dogs puppies

diane cantrell riley's tooth children's book illustrations watercolour dogs puppies

diane cantrell riley's tooth children's book illustrations watercolour dogs puppies

You can see some of the finished sketches for Riley’s Tooth in this previous post.

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Riley’s Tooth | First Watercolour Wash

By heather at 9:03 pm on Tuesday, April 28, 2009

diane cantrell riley's tooth children's book illustrations watercolour dogs puppies

Here’s another sneak peak at the illustrations I’m working on for Diane Cantrell’s new story, Riley’s Tooth. I’m working with watercolours on Arches medium watercolour paper which I’ve taped down onto masonite board. I’ve just finished painting the first layer, and am moving onto building up the layers of colour and detail. I always enjoy the loose first wash of colour… the crazier it looks initially the better once you go over and tighten up the details.

diane cantrell riley's tooth children's book illustrations watercolour dogs puppies

diane cantrell riley's tooth children's book illustrations watercolour dogs puppies

diane cantrell riley's tooth children's book illustrations watercolour dogs puppies

You can see some of the finished sketches for Riley’s Tooth in this previous post.

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Sneak Peek at Riley’s Tooth

By heather at 9:26 pm on Wednesday, April 1, 2009

diane cantrell riley's tooth dogs toothfairy lost teeth children's book

I have the pleasure of working for a second time with Diane Cantrell, author of Mom’s Choice Award winning picture book, Good-bye Baby Max. The title of our latest picture book is yet to be set, but I can tell you the story is about three pups who don’t quite grasp the concept of the Tooth Fairy and try in earnest to find their owner’s first lost tooth. I’ve just finished up the sketches… here are a handful to have a sneak peek at! The finals will be in watercolour & pencil on Arches paper. I transferred the sketches with an Artograph a couple nights ago, so once I’ve taped the paper down to masonite boards I will start painting, yippee!
diane cantrell riley's tooth dogs toothfairy lost teeth children's book

diane cantrell riley's tooth dogs toothfairy lost teeth children's book

diane cantrell riley's tooth dogs toothfairy lost teeth children's book

diane cantrell riley's tooth dogs toothfairy lost teeth children's book

diane cantrell riley's tooth dogs toothfairy lost teeth children's book

diane cantrell riley's tooth dogs toothfairy lost teeth children's book

diane cantrell riley's tooth dogs toothfairy lost teeth children's book

Filed under: work in progress, sketches, childrens books, Good-bye Baby Max, Riley's Lost Tooth5 Comments »