This past week felt reminiscent of the ‘good old days’ of the past decade, with a different assignment every day, and a mixture of styles, rough sketches and finishes and a variety of subject matters. Finishing up the week early, as I’ve got the Wheatland Music Festival this weekend. Above is a full page illustration for a new client, KIWI Magazine, and below we have an assignment for one of my oldest clients, the Chronicle of Higher Education (first job for them was in ’92), and below that, another Witches Companion cover for Llewellyn (this will be the 9th cover for this series of books).
Over the past two years, my posting to this blog has slowed down considerably, as the nature of my clients changes. In the past, I’ve done a lot of work for periodical publication, many with short deadlines and quick turnarounds, so I’ve been able to post examples of work nearly as fast as I could churn it out. With my work turning more toward the book publishing industry in recent years, contractual obligations have kept work under wraps until the books have seen print (and usually, by the time they see print, I forget to go back and post many, if any examples of the work). Since 2013, I’ve been working with a few designers at Penguin on their ‘Who Was’ series of young adult biographies. Someone else usually does the cover art, and I contribute 80 or so black and white line art illustrations to the interior. I did one cover assignment near the beginning (the ‘Lewis and Clark’ book above), but I think was clear from the start that I was uncomfortable and awkward with the whole ‘big head’ style that they used on the covers. Now it is nine books later, and approximately 720 illustrations, and I am currently working on another in the series for a release next spring. I will endeavor to post a sampling of illustrations from the various books over the next couple weeks, and in the meantime, you can find amazon links to the various titles on my bibliography page.
Got a few assignments this week, some repeat business from established clients, and heard from a client I hadn’t worked for in fifteen years (the above featured illustration), and a project from a brand new client, and some unfortunate news from one of my most established clients about more downsizing and dismal prospects for the future. I have a few book projects lined up for the fall months, and have started work on another short animated film in the down time, but otherwise am hoping for an upswing in business as the year winds to a close.
Meanwhile, on the music front, after a wonderful launch to our new CD, with two radio interviews and a successful release party, the band had a few setbacks in August, with the guitar player suffering a severe hand injury, and the pedal steel player’s wife spending some time in the hospital for surgery complications, so we had to cancel gigs for August, September and are hoping to do some limited playing in October before getting back up to speed.