Continuing with my salute to the Presidents (with President’s Day falling on Monday of this week), I’ve dug up all the presidential illustrations I’ve done in my nearly thirty year career. The more obscure early presidents from John Quincy Adams through James Buchanan are mostly culled from a few projects from about ten years ago, a collection of caricature portraits for a Dover Sticker Book, and a series of woodcut illustrations for a set of Uncle Goose Presidential Blocks (I’ll have to share a photo I have of former President Clinton holding a set of these blocks in a future posting). Once we get to Lincoln, I have several illustrations to dig out of the archives, and scrolling down we also find an extra James Madison and George Washington that I had forgotten about (dating back to around 2002).
In honor of President’s Day (which fell on Monday of this week), I’ve collected every illustration that I could find in my archives in which I’ve portrayed George Washington. 3 of the most recent illustrations are from the ‘What Was the Constitution?’ book which I just completed a few months ago, and the others are from various sources, including the Uncle Goose President Blocks (upper left), Dover Presidential Sticker Book (2nd clockwise from the top), a few early Cobblestone illustrations (more or less center), an illustration from the Miami Herald (bottom left) and a cover illustration for Barnes and Noble (bottom right).
And then, since I found an extra ‘George Washington’ that I did for the Wall Street Journal (the dollar bill portrait with the black eye), I’ve collected all the 2nd and 3rd Presidential portraits that I have in my archives. Again, some from the Presidential Sticker Book from Dover, and from the Uncle Goose Presidential Blocks, plus some others from various sources. Below are the portraits I did of Madison (many from the same ‘Constitution book’ that I recently completed), and the only two times that I’ve drawn James Monroe. The remaining presidents I have on file are rather hit or miss, but I may continue with this series at a future date.
And I almost forgot the paper dolls that I had done just last year for a book on Alexander Hamilton, so here’s Washington, Adams, Jefferson and Madison one more time.
I just finished up the illustrations for my 16th title in the ‘Who Was’ series of books from Penguin Young Readers (‘What is Area 51?’), so I thought I’d take us back a few years and share all the illustrations from a previous title. This one was from 2015 and was titled “Where is Niagara Falls?”. This was probably the most challenging and labor intensive of the books so far, with a lot of cityscapes, large landscapes and overhead shots. I learned to speed up the process with this project, which is sort of a necessity especially when I started working on multiple titles with overlapping deadlines, and, as a result, I had some breakthroughs with regards to my black and white pen and ink style. I was quite happy with how a lot of these illustrations turned out. I’ve shared a few of these in the past, but this is the first time sharing all 80 or so from the book.
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).
Another in the series of Penguin “Who Was” books that I did in 2014 was “Who Was Robert Ripley?”. This was my sixth title for this client (the previously shared “Isaac Newton” and “Edgar Allan Poe” books were actually numbers 7 and 8, respectively, I had somehow skipped the Ripley book), and I am currently working on two titles concurrently (in 2017) that will be the 14th and 15th in this series. As with the other books, I may have shared one or two samples in previous posts, but this is the first time I am sharing all 80 or so illustrations from the book. Next month I’ll be sharing ‘Where Is Niagara Falls?’ from 2015.