Thursday, April 28, 2011

It's Page Design Time

The fun part of this project for me is working with Jannie. We're two very different artists, yet I really believe that we'll eventually merge our styles into one uniformed and marketable look. Although I can and do work digitally, I'm typically more traditional when I approach sketches. Basically a pencil and paper approach. Jannie on the other hand has been experimenting with doing even her sketch work digitally. Right away I'm thinking her work looks WAY MORE polished than mine and I'm hesitant to offer my own version. Yet I think we'll really learn from each other as we move forward during our page design time and that will only help the end result. This really is a true collaboration and one I'm proud to be involved in.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Circus Study

Our hero, Daredevil Chicken, is inspired to do stunts because he had went to the circus and saw all the wonderful acts. While trying to sketch one of the possible scenes, I had realized that I didn't know much about all the little details of what goes on at a circus and more research was needed.

I've been doing alot of "sketching" straight on the computer in color...and this is one of those sketches. I don't usually know what happens in the end, but with a color palette in mind, it pulls together. This is not the final piece but its a nice warm up to get my circus mojo going!

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Loop De Loop

When I reflect back to my grammar school days I recall the book mobile setting up shop in the playground parking lot each year. Hundreds of books all neatly lined up in the back of a Tractor Trailer. Not sure if schools still host a book mobile but I know it was a lot of fun for kids when I was in school. It truly got everyone excited about reading because they picked out a subject matter that was of interest to them. Subsequently it got them reading and that is a great thing.

Although I'm sure I purchased a few books in the book mobile over the years, the title that really sticks out to me was a softcover entitled "Motorcycle Daredevils." I read it from cover to cover at least once a week. Looking back at this title it was written as almost an instructional book for kids on leaping your Harley Davidson or Triumph motorcycle over 18 buses. Sure, what kid owned a Harley in 3rd grade? Yet little kids grow up to become big kids who do buy motorcycles. Now that I'm working with Jannie on this book, my intention is to make the daredevil subject matter just as enjoyable and exciting as Motorcycle Daredevils was to me. Yet I'd like to eliminate the "how to" part of the book. So although I don't want to give away the entire story, the "big stunt" build up involves a Loop De Loop. Why a Loop De Loop? Well I was thinking that it would be visually interesting and yet most kids would probably never grow up and try and build one in their back yard.

With that said, please pass along any "safe" stunts you can think of and maybe they'll make it into the book.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Merging Art- Take 2

After the first try of us merging our art together, we tried it another way in which Scott painted some traditional background for me to add on top of.

Scott's traditional background

Jannie's digital art added on top

At first, I wasn't sure if I can "match" my digital art with the painterly background. But it actually made me think outside the box from my normal process and routine, but still using Illustrator to create my art. I also got to try a different color palette in which I didn't normally think to use.

I think this blends quite nicely. I'm not sure how we will divide up the work but passing art back and forth between us is working out well. Still need to nail down a certain style but we are getting there.

Thanks for all the votes on our hero's name  here and Facebook. We still haven't decided but we'll settle on a name soon!

Thursday, April 7, 2011

It's all in the name.

Besides all the artwork that's been going on behind the scenes, a manuscript has been in the works. Lots of passing back and forth trying to tweak the story and make it as much fun as possible. We have a working title and even character names picked out yet everything is open for debate. That said, we'd really like your help.

Our chicken hero is currently named Colbert. Specifically Colbert Coop. Although I liked it as I was writing the story, I kept envisioning Steven Colbert the political comedian who does a lot of work on Comedy Central. Not sure why. In fact I think he pronounces it "ColBER" while our guy is named "ColBERT". After the first story rough I approached Jannie with the idea of switching over the character's name to Clement Coop so there would never be any confusion. Clement is my son's middle name and to date, I've never heard another person (or political comedian) named Clement.

Both work and are unique enough that I don't think either would be bad. So which one do you like better? Colbert or Clement? Or better yet. Do you have another Chicken Daredevil name that might make a child chuckle even more?

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Character Design + Merging Art

After all the doodling, I decided to sketch some more on the computer. Scott and I decided to have a bit more of a vintage feel to the book so I picked colors that was more in the sepia/brown tones, a palette which was different than what I'm use to.

 Jannie's- "before"

I passed this off to Scott and we were wondering how we can then merge the art together. I deleted my cow and see how he can add his art to it.

Scott's -"After"

It was fun to see another artist's vision- I loved Scott's cow and the motorcycle was upgraded! This was our first test run to see how this will work. We'll be experimenting with other styles to see what we like best.