I’m in the middle of another ‘Who Was’ book project for Penguin currently. This one is on Walt Whitman. I usually post samples from the book a couple years after it has been published, but today, I thought I’d share with you what a typical day’s workload looks like when I’m doing one of these books. I try to shoot for a minimum of 6 illustrations per day, to meet the deadline the publisher has set for September 3rd (I always plan on trying to beat the deadline by a few days). This schedule is workable for me, as it takes up most of the day, but also leaves a little wiggle room in case I also need to fit in another project. This was todays’ 6 illustrations, and they usually range from single half page spots like above to 2 page spreads like the two below, with the occasional small spot (like the portrait). Today’s big challenge was the elaborate theater scene, which took a good chunk of the day to complete.
Read this morning in the news about the passing of John Lewis. Condolences to his family and friends and many admirers. Had a chance to draw him for a recent book on the Civil Rights Movement.
In 2018 I illustrated my 17th title in the New York Times Bestselling “Who Was” series for young readers. This was probably my favorite of the books to work on, as I have been an avid movie buff (especially the early years of cinema) since a young child, and there’s nothing I like better than drawing movie screen legends. I have shared a sampling of illustrations from this book back when I completed it, but this is the first time sharing the entire collection of nearly 80 illustrations. I’m currently working on my 21st title, and recently finished up the 20th, but I usually wait a few years before sharing the illustrations.
Check out my ‘Penguin Portfolio Page’ for the complete list of books and links to the illustrations.
Been a few weeks since my last posting. I’ve been working hard on finishing up the sketches for one ‘Who Was’ project, and doing finished illustrations for another one on the ‘Civil Rights Movement’ (a few teaser samples below, I usually save the whole project for a few years past the publication date, which is hard, because I’m so happy with how so many in this book turned out). I’ve also been working on another animation project, which will probably not see the light of day for another month or more. I’m also happy to announce I’ve got another book project lined up for a new client over the next couple of months. So hopefully things are slowly looking hopeful again after several months of stress. The above illustration was a quick one this morning for Delaware Today.
I’m currently in a ‘holding pattern’ on several books (either waiting for the manuscript to begin rough sketches, or waiting on rough sketches to be approved to go to finish, or waiting final approval to go to publication), and, since two of the books on the docket are from the ‘Who Was’ series, I thought I’d take the time to share the artwork from a previously published title that I was involved with. This one is “Where is Area 51?” from a few years back, and, like most of these projects, consisted of around 80 illustrations of various sizes, ranging from spot art to two page spreads. Like the ‘Bermuda Triangle’ project, this one had a fair number of airplanes to draw, plus quite a few barren landscapes. While I have shared a few samples from this book here in the past, this is the first time sharing all of the collection.
The two books I am currently working on (What was the Civil Rights Movement? and Who was Walt Whitman?) are the 20th and 21st books that I will have illustrated for this series. The others were:
PENGUIN ‘WHO WAS’ CHECKLIST:
What was the Bombing of Hiroshima? – 2019
What was the Vietnam War? – 2018
Where is Hollywood? – 2018
Where is Area 51? – 2018
What is The Constitution? – 2018
Where Is The Bermuda Triangle? – 2017
What was the Ten Commandments? – 2017
Where Is The Eiffel Tower? – 2017
What Was The Chicago Fire? – 2016
Who Was Milton Bradley? – 2016
Where Is Niagara Falls? – 2015
Who Was Edgar Allan Poe? – 2015
Who Was Robert Ripley? – 2014
Who Was Julius Caesar? – 2014
Who Was Isaac Newton? – 2014
What is the Panama Canal? – 2014
Who Were The Wright Brothers? – 2014
What Was the Lewis & Clark Expedition? – 2014
Who Was Laura Ingalls Wilder? – 2014