Friday, June 29, 2007

Studio Tour

My studio is actually sort of clean for a change, so I thought I'd post pictures. I always like seeing where artists work. Like in this flickr stream by Brian Biggs.
Anyway, here's my decidedly less impressive studio.

A 2-part panorama of the whole deal:

Closeup of my workstation:

What's left of the paper steamboat model I made whilst working on Ste-e-e-e-eamboat A-Comin'!. See the "BOOKS" link at the right for details.

Sunday, June 24, 2007

7 Impossible Things

Check out this post on the kids' lit blog Seven Impossible Things Before Breakfast. You can see a page from my fall picture book, Pssst!, as well as a painting of the alien star of my fall novel, The True Meaning of Smekday. Then keep reading the blog for all kinds of great interviews and reviews.
In the meantime, here's one of my favorite panels from Pssst!

Sunday, June 17, 2007

Super Models, But Not the Good Kind.

Just a quick post to show this photo of a few of my models for Pssst!. In the center is a Sculpey head I made of my human character, Zooey, and she's flanked by a couple of nice little toys from Schleich. These, in conjunction with a lot of photos of real animals, helped me paint.

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Pssst!–Making the Cover

Here's a potentially embarrassing look behind the scenes at the making of the cover of Pssst! (see previous post for the final cover).
My first finished sketch was theatically similar, but with a completely different composition ang title design. The thumbnail:

and the finished sketch, with some digital color:

Harcourt didn't like it. I can't remember why. But I like the final cover better, so they must have been right. Here are a few subsequent stages:

That last one turned into the final cover you can see below. The title changed a bit–typographical artist Judythe Sieck helped me redesign it into something a little cleaner and easier to read.
That's all for now, more in a few days.

Monday, June 11, 2007

Fall Preview–Pssst!

Here's the jacket of my fall '07 picture book, Pssst!. It's to be released at the beginning of September by Harcourt. It's the story of a day at the zoo, and what happens when the animals start asking for favors. And it's got penguins in it, which I understand the kids like. More images from the book to come.

Monday, June 4, 2007

BEA Thanks

Thank you to everyone who ame to see me at Book Expo America last week in New York City. I had a great show, and a couple of great signings with Harcourt and Hyperion.

Special thanks to the guy inside the gorilla suit at my Harcourt signing. I wish I could remember his name. The Javits Center was hot enough for the rest of us without wearing black fur. And I know he was dripping sweat at the end, because he accidentally flicked some of it on me when he waved goodbye. Goodbye, talking gorilla. Fare thee well.

Another Oldie

Here's another sketchbook page from about seven or eight years ago. I want to stress that most of my sketchbook pages do not look like this. This was the product of one of those perfect days, when it seems you can draw no wrong. This was before I got into kids' books, and I was trying my hand at celebrity caricature. So that explains most of the page. And the age of these drawings explains why I thought it was relevant to caricature Marilyn Manson.