Jun 21, 2009

Project: The Book Illustrations

Jun 21, 2009
Rather than a conventional blog post, this is more of an excuse for not blogging more often. You see, I have good reason. Stumped, the children's book now in its second round of (shockingly positive) audience testing, is to be illustrated.

For some as of yet unexplained, completely arbitrary reason my fellow Silent Knight decided it should be my responsibility. So after an effortless year of writing the entire book, he now kicks back polishing the script for our next project, (a Proof-Of-Concept animation). Honestly, how hard is it to press buttons on a keyboard. Am I right?

But that's okay, I'm used to carrying this partnership - it was I, after all, that wore my fingers to the bone spending minutes upon minutes of my life writing emails telling him to work harder. But that's all in the past now.

In all seriousness, illustrating the book is quite a large undertaking. Our vision for the book was always a 'my first novel' approach (somewhere between a 'Spot Looks At Colours' and 'Spot Thinks About Aesthetic Ideals For Four Hundred Pages') with pictures making up for the comparative length. The book weighs in at 116 pages, and we're aiming for about five pictures for every six pages. That adds up to just under 100 pictures - with about twenty being wider scenery shots.

It requires lots of back and forth emailing - I kind of rely on Luke's 'nice jerk' ability to know when a picture needs to be completely redrawn. He's a true director at heart.

At this stage I've 'roughed' a bit over half the book. Once I finish roughing them, and we've tried laying them out, I can start the inking process which will hopefully be considerably shorter.

Here are a couple of roughs now:

These pictures make sense in context, I promise.


  1. So awesome!
    Mutt you are a truly talented man.
    Luke, hi.

  2. Seriously Mutt, I cannot stress this enough.

    You are some kind of super genius man made of awesomeness wrapped in more awesomeness.

  3. ...wrapped in a four foot thick, inpenetrable layer of lies, deciet, malice, and awesomeness. Rock on.

  4. Awww, thanks two thirds of you!

  5. oh man , these are so whimsical and cute.
    each drawing is so lively...how do you do that?
    my faves are the angel + fox + lion with a mo.

  6. Jen-
    Thanks! It's good to hear favourites

    Easily the most enthusiastic and aggressive compliment I've ever received. I am honoured.

  7. These illustrations are great Mutt. The shadows around the campfire are effective. Good stuff :D


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