Sketchy business

September 14, 2017

I start  work on a story by drawing some initial sketches of the characters I see in my head - this way I have them before me when I write about them.  Here are my first sketches for Willa.


I was pretty pleased with these and, as you will see from the finished book, I did not stray too far from my initial ideas.  The first sketches are done as doodles on paper which I scan into my computer, clean up and then add a few details to round out the characters.  Once the story is written, I move forward with a sketch book dummy. This is created on my Wacom Cintiq using the Painter program to sketch out the entire story, placing the appropriate text as a layer on each page.  I also like to add some shading and wash work to create a more developed image before I send the project off to my agent. 



Sometimes, there's not a lot of change from the initial sketch to the finished art!  Maybe this is because I think about the images so much before I draw them -? But this is not true for every image!



 Here's an early sketch of the bear -


I felt it was too intimidating, a little too realistic looking to be really friendly ;)   So I changed it to show a more animated expression, a more goofy bear, and this one felt right for the story.











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copyright 2019  Philomena O'Neill
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