Witches Bird and Sharks

Barrons, Christian Home & School, Llewellyn, Newsday

Over the past week or so, I’ve been working on a large batch of black and white spot illustrations to fill out a book for Llewellyn Publishing on the wiccan religion. I’d done the cover earlier in the summer, and they contacted me later for some last minute inside work (I gathered that I would be among a number of other illustrators working on this project, in order to get it done in time). Many of them I finished while on the road, driving my Dad to Arizona, working at night in hotel rooms on my wife’s laptop. I’ve included only a few of them here (there were something like 12 of them total, on a variety of topics). After a long dry spell during the end of September, it was a relief to get a lot of work back on the docket, but at the same time, the drive that I committed to with my father made the timing a little stressful.

The subject matter was a nice change of pace, from my usual financial topics that I’ve been mired in the past few years. Nice to not have to draw a businessman’s suit, and in some cases, even got to do away with clothing altogether.

ADDENDUM (Jan 9, 2008): I just got my complimentary copies in the mail today for this book, and it looks pretty nice. Can be purchased at Amazon here.

When I got back from Arizona, I had a few color pieces for Barrons. I had done a number of sketches earlier for a general all purpose topic of ‘risk’, and these were a few leftover ideas from that earlier session, that I was asked to finish up for future usage on upcoming articles. I’ve included the ‘measuring the shark bite’ example, of the two that I completed early in the week (below left).

Also had another quick black and white daily for Newsday, this one on endangered New Jersey wetlands, and had to do a little research on a specific species of ‘Meadowlark’ (pictured at bottom). I liked how this one turned out. I always seem to prefer how the black and white pieces turn out over the color ones, not sure why. The color seems to dillute the power of the scratchboard technique just a little bit.

And to round out the month, had an illustration assignment for Christian Home & School about ‘being a bit too busy’ (the woman in the story is so engrossed in her phone conversation and coffee that she runs a red light and nearly runs down a little girl at the crosswalk, only noticing her in the rear view mirror after she passed). Got to experiment with a different medium than the usual scratchboard, using washes and colored pencils for a lighter sketchy feeling. Thanks to the wife for rushing out into the driveway to pose in the family car for me.