Been a busy several weeks. I haven’t had time to post any samples in a while. The illustration above was a quickie for River Styx about a young newlywed couple who do some ‘caving’ on their honeymoon. I actually preferred the energy of the sketch to the final illustration on this one. In the past few weeks I’ve been finishing up a few new book projects. One of them was another of the ‘Who Was’ series of books for Penguin, this one on the Bermuda Triangle (I’ve attached a sample illustration, one of about 80 of the illustrations for this particular title). I’ll be sharing all the illustrations for this book probably sometime next year after it is on the shelves. The other book I was working on was for a new client, MacMillan Children’s Publishing, and was a semi-humorous book on Orville & Wilbur Wright (if you recall, I also did a book on the Wright Brothers for Penguin a few years back). I’ve attached one of illustrations as a sample (and again, will share more of them after publication).
This was another textbook cover for MacMillan’s college division, which I did a fair share of during the years ’90 and ’91. All were in pastels, and I had earlier thought I had lost most of these originals, but they have recently been found. This was a textbook on physical education, and used copies of this particular edition are still available on Amazon (link here).
This was another textbook cover in pastels that I did for MacMillan’s textbook division. This edition still seems to be available on Amazon. This one wasn’t nearly as fun as some of the others, as it required a fairly realistic scene with a lot of details (which is hard to pull off in this pastel style), however, according to my invoices, it garnered a bit of reprint action for several months after I did it (mostly internal, probably for advertising purposes, or brochures).
In April of ’90 I had the first of several textbook cover assignments from MacMillan’s textbook division. All were pastels, and this first one was my favorite of the bunch. This was for a sex textbook, and the client wanted an image with ambiguous figures on it, so that it could apply to both hetero and homosexual partners without being too exclusionary. This was one of my earliest ‘big projects’ in my freelance career, and went a long way towards building my confidence and keeping me going through the difficult periods. The book is still available used on Amazon. The problem with pastel as an illustration medium is mostly due to the fragility of the medium, as it is prone to smudging even with generous amounts of fixative (which discolors the image, so I hated to use it), and shipping the artwork was a particular pain. Amazingly this has survived in my flat files for nearly twenty years, but it shows a lot of age, with various smudges and mars on the surface.