The Little Boy’s Smile on YouTube!

By heather at 8:49 pm on Thursday, December 9, 2010

tom krause little boy's smile childrens book illustrations heather castles

Tom Krause, author of “The Little Boy’s Smile,” recently sent me this link to a reading of our story up on YouTube… enjoy!

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The Little Boy’s Smile | Books arrived!

By heather at 5:04 pm on Wednesday, August 6, 2008

the little boy's smile children's books trafford publishing

Eeeeee! I just received a box full of copies of my latest book, “The Little Boy’s Smile,” written by Tom Krause. I just love how it turned out, Trafford did a great job with the publishing & printing, the colours especially coming very close to the original artwork. Even Hera’s thrilled, cutely sporting her baby balloon dress :)

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The Little Boy’s Smile | Available Online!

By heather at 3:22 pm on Monday, June 23, 2008

Woooo, Tom’s & my book, “The Little Boy’s Smile,” is now available online for US$10.99! I haven’t seen a hardcopy of the book yet myself, can’t wait!

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The Little Boy’s Smile | Gone to print!

By heather at 1:18 am on Thursday, April 3, 2008

I’m pretty stoked as my most recent children’s book, “The Lottle Boy’s Smile” by Tom Krause, has gone to print at Trafford! I’m not too embarrassed to say I’m proud of this book and am happy with how the illustrations turned out! I was given quite a bit of creative freedom in the project, thanks to the generous author, and I think my enjoyment in the project reflects throughout. Will post once it’s printed & available online.

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myPANTONE | The Little Boy’s Smile colour palette

By heather at 1:33 am on Friday, March 14, 2008

palette colour pantone color children's book

Here’s a palette I created using myPANTONE, inspired by one of my children’s books, “The Little Boy’s Smile” by Tom Krause.

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The Little Boy’s Smile | All done!

By heather at 9:49 pm on Thursday, February 14, 2008

little boy's smile illustrations acrylic roses characature

I just finished painting the last of the illustrations for Tom Krause’s “The Little Boy’s Smile” Not a day too soon as I’m taking some time off for maternity leave tomorrow! I will to leave you in suspense as to how the rest of the illustrations turned out until they are all approved & sent to the printer… but in the mean time, here are a couple of my favourites from the book :)

little boy's smile illustrations acrylic roses characature

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The Little Boy’s Smile | One last sneak peak

By heather at 11:10 pm on Tuesday, January 29, 2008

little boy's smile childrens book illustrations acrylic

Ok, just one more peak, but that’s the last one as I need to knuckle down and finish the last five illustrations this week! The main things I’ve been working on are the greenery, sidewalks, tents, and backgrounds… putting off the hard parts for last, typical me :)

little boy's smile childrens book illustrations acrylic

little boy's smile childrens book illustrations acrylic

I tried a new trick too… I’ve seen quite a few digital illustrations which which use silhouettes of people, rather than illustrating every detail of the person, clothing, etc. So I thought I’d give it a go, and added in some silhouettes of people in the far background to add more depth & a sense that there are a lot of people in the illustration. Am pleased with the effect, as it was a simple way of adding some interest behind the action in the foreground, without taking the time it would had I gone in with my 0-Paintbrush and tried to illustrate those tiny faces & bodies! I think I’ll use this silhouette technique more often.

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The Little Boy’s Smile | Another Sneak Peak

By heather at 1:01 am on Friday, January 18, 2008

The illustrations for Tom Krause’s “The Little Boy’s Smile” are ticking along well, so thought I’d share a sneak snapshot of the collection of illustrations for the book… only the top left 4 are completed, and the remaining six are well underway! I’ve been working on completing these acrylic illustrations one at a time, up until yesterday when I was feeling “yellow” so painted all the soft yelow skies at once… and this morning when I was feeling “blue” and painted all the blue skies! I think this afternoon is starting to feel a little “green.” This book is a lot of fun to illustrate, I’m thoroughly enjoying myself painting, eating popsicles, listening to Just One More Book, and taking an afternoon nap! I’ll post again once I’ve scanned some of the finished illustrations…

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The Little Boy’s Smile | Step-by-Step Painting

By heather at 7:07 pm on Thursday, December 6, 2007

little boy smile children's book illustrations acrylic

I just finished the first illustration for Tom Krause’s story, “The Little Boy’s Smile.” I thought I’d share my work-in-progress for the acrylic painting and took scans every hour or two as I was painting… check them out below going backwards to the original sketch!

One super time-saving method I’ve developed is painting right on top of my sketches. I don’t paint over my original pencil sketches, as I like to keep those, and also the graphite would likely lift off and taint the paint. So what I do is :

  • Scan the original sketches
  • Tint the sketches to sepia in Photoshop using actions (so they show through as a warm tone under the paint)
  • Place them into the book’s InDesign layout with the text so that I can make sure the illustrations don’t interfere with the text, gutter, and that nothing is getting clipped off in the bleed
  • Print out the InDesign layout at full size (text & all, with cropmarks too!) on printer paper (80% Recycled was all I could find here in OZ!)
  • Trim the pages down
  • Glue them to the cold-press illustration board (I used an entire large Bostik Blustick ACMI AP Approved gluestick… and was sure to recycle the empty casing!), then use a wood-cut ink roller to smooth the pages down so there are no wrinkles
  • Once it has dried, I paint right on top of this paper! The lovely thing about acrylic is that it doesn’t eat away or dammage the surface of the paper, so you don’t need to coat the paper with a sealant first (as you would with oils.)

So, I save a day or two of transfering the sketches by hand to the illustration board, and also maintian the integrity of my original sketches. It also makes painting text a dream (such as on the sign), as you just paint over top of the text placed on your illustration. It gives the text a warmer feel than just placing it on top in the InDesign file later.
little boy smile children's book illustrations acrylic

little boy smile children's book illustrations acrylic

little boy smile children's book illustrations acrylic

little boy smile children's book illustrations acrylic

little boy smile children's book illustrations acrylic

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The Little Boy’s Smile | Sketches

By heather at 1:30 pm on Wednesday, November 28, 2007

little boy smile children's book story illustration sketch

Well, I’ve been a bit negligent blogging the last few weeks as I’ve been working hard on the sketches for Tom Krause’s children’s book, “The Little Boy’s Smile.” It’s a fantastic story, about a little boy who moves to Frown Town where all everyone does is frown… and you guessed it, he just doesn’t fit in because he smiles all the time! Now that the sketches are approved, I’m setting up the final illustrations and working on the first colour proof. The finals will be in acrylic on illustration board, so bright, vibrant colours. So check back, I’ll be posting my work-in-progress as I’m building up the layers of my acrylic paintings.

little boy smile children's book story illustration sketch

little boy smile children's book story illustration sketch

little boy smile children's book story illustration sketch

little boy smile children's book story illustration sketch

little boy smile children's book story illustration sketch

little boy smile children's book story illustration sketch

little boy smile children's book story illustration sketch

little boy smile children's book story illustration sketch

little boy smile children's book story illustration sketch

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