Tuesday, June 3, 2008

On a roll - well, maybe on a little bun

There's a great feeling you get when things start to come together.
I found I was belting out images with some confidence. I could be working on perhaps two or three at a time. It would seem logical to start at the beginning and work my way through to the end, but I found it didn't happen that way.
Because each illustration needed to pass through three stages, these being:
Pencilling - working out the shapes and how they would sit on the page and 'embrace' the verse.
Inking - Putting down the black linework on material similar to tracing paper, which would be scanned into the computer to take me to stage three, which is...
Colouring - adding colour using Photoshop and saving in a format that can be placed on the page,
not every illustration was at the same stage. Depending how I felt when I started a session, I would flip through what I had left to do and choose something. If I felt like doing colour, that's what I did. Similarly, if there were still pencil stages to play with, I might do that, if the mood took me,
Eventually, of course, all of the pencilling was complete. Then I did all of the linework, which left me with many hours of colouring.
While all of this is going on, I have to earn a living because working on a project like this, which is a bit like a hobby, I'm not earning money. So, I'd get up at 6.00am, like I normally do, and work on The Boy with an Axe in His Head until 9.00am. At that time I'd work on the things that earn me a living - creating all kinds of stuff like embroidery designs or characters to be sculpted as figurines for people to collect.
At 5.00pm, I'd go back to my book illustrating maybe grabbing something to eat when my belly began rumbling too loud I couldn't hear the music I play while I'm working.
I'd then work until sleep made my eyes close and flop into bed. I'm lucky enough to work from a studio at home, so I can work as long as I feel like.
Whenever I tell people I work from home, they often think I get up when I like, take lots of breaks, an extra long lunch and finish early.
Nothing could be further from the truth. When you do something that you love for a living, which I am so fortunate to say I do, you find that you happily put all of your time and energy into your work because it's special. It's not like school homework or something that you are required to do.
So, here I was working between 16 and 18 hours a day between July and the first week in October and I loving every minute.

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