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Into the Woods - TOBEYOU exhibition

This is a cut paper piece (c 8×8 inches) that I made for Light Grey Art Lab‘s exhibition TOBEYOU: personal narratives, tales and memory.

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It is called “Into the Woods”, and is about growing up reading fairytales when you live in the Australian bush. The protagonist of the illustration is far more willowy and on-trend than I ever was when I did this.

The original is for sale at Light Grey Art Lab (in Minneapolis, and on their website), along with many, many other beautiful works of art.

I also made a few cyanotype prints (sunprints) of the illustration.

Into the Woods - TOBEYOU exhibition

 

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Here is the cover art for the final episode of Season 2 of Serial Box’s serialised prequel to Ellen Kushner’s Riverside novels, Tremontaine!

Earlier posts:

The final episode of a season is almost as difficult to illustrate as the overall season cover. How to represent what happens in this particular episode, while being true to the overall arc of the season and catching the right elegiac or hopeful note…

As a result, there were a lot of thumbnail sketches.

Tremontaine S2 E13 thumbnails

We went with the image of a Kinwiinik ship taking to the waves. Here are the final pencils.

Tremontaine S2 E13 pencils

And at last, alas, the finished cover (I’m particularly fond of the poppies). The final layout and design is, as ever, by Charles Orr.

Tremontaine S2 E13 final cover

I hadn’t yet read any of Frances Hardinge‘s novels when Gili Bar-Hillel of Utz Books asked me to illustrate the cover for the Hebrew translation of The Lie Tree. And oh, it is so very good!

Here are a few of my first thumbnail concepts for the cover.

The Lie Tree - thumbnails

The novel is a beautiful combination of gothic mystery, scientific discovery, faith, lies, ambition, hubris and secrets. Part way through I realised that it felt like Matthew Arnold’s poem “Dover Beach”, and then a particularly apt sentence sent me back to the beginning to check for a nonchalant line that convinced me this was entirely deliberate on Hardinge’s part.

Here are the pencils. We decided to go with more open vinework around the title.

The Lie Tree - pencils

I then cut the final image out of black paper, and sent it through for the designer, Dor Cohen, to do wonderful things with.

The Lie Tree - cover

The Hebrew translation of France’s Hardinge’s novel The Lie Tree, translated by Yael Achmon, is now available for pre-order from Utz Books: The Lie Tree.

Thanks to my supporters on Patreon who help give me time to put together these process posts (and who get to see projects like this early).

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I just… love that dormouse so much.

Hello, and welcome to the March calendar. It has been brought to you by my wonderful patrons – you too can support calendar development and even have the option of getting calendars early, and stationery based on them, as well as behind-the-scenes glimpses and the thrill of patronising me.

I based these folks on Sir John Tenniel’s most famous illustrations for Alice in Wonderland, although I decided I was not really feeling like drawing legs on the teapot. One day.

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By Sir John Tenniel

I didn’t used to love Tenniel’s design for Alice, but I’ve grown to. He captures so very well what many versions fail to: Alice is neither a terrible human being who never says thankyou, nor a precocious innocent.

March 2017 calendar

She’s simultaneously a child trying to make sense of an adult world, to enforce upon it the rules she’s been taught (falsely) exist, and the only remotely grownup person in the make-believe chaos of Wonderland. In some ways, I think, she’s a rather close cousin to (some interpretations of) Susan Pevensie.

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There will be some products and prints available soon. I’ll update, or you can keep an eye on Redbubble and Spoonflower.

March 2017 calendar

As ever, you can download the images below for personal use for this month’s calendar: pre-coloured or to colour in yourself. And if you’re considering chipping in on Patreon, I’d be delighted to have your support!

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Illustration Friday: Up

A little pencil foolishness, with colour added on the computer. There are some offset perspectives happening here but OH WELL, I like the little Gibson Harpy.

February 2017 Calendar - detail

As you may have noticed, I’ve started a Patreon account. That lets people be involved with the process of creating my personal art – like this calendar! If you’d like to join in, that would be lovely.

This month, with the input and support of my patrons, I decided on Sleeping Beauty (it’s also the current fairy tale under discussion for the Australian Fairy Tale Society).

February 2017 Calendar - art

I will be developing it into a repeating design, but I had a couple of other end-January deadlines, such as finishing the first round of edits on an Australian Gothic novella! In the meantime, this version of it is up as a print, t-shirt, etc on Redbubble. (N.B. Patreon support helps there be more time for calendars and patterns:)

February 2017 Calendar - detail

You can download the pages by clicking on the images below to print at home (no commercial use, please, without prior arrangement with me), either pre-coloured or to colour yourself.

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(And remember, patrons on Patreon get early previews of some projects).

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Here is the cover art for the next two episodes of Season 2 of Serial Box’s serialised prequel to Ellen Kushner’s Riverside novels, Tremontaine!

Earlier posts:

Episode 11 or The One In Which Nothing Good Happens. Since I read manuscripts to look for images to illustrate, my reader-reaction is usually somewhat muted. Not in Episode 11. I’ve obviously read Season 1, but also I’ve read the novels that are set later, and suddenly a whole lot of events started rushing together to squish my beloved characters.

Tremontaine S2 E11 - thumbnails

I had to keep putting the manuscript down to worry, and then read on with my hand covering the bottom of the page so I couldn’t spoil it for myself. If you click on this link it should take you to the Twitter thread of me mostly just gasping and hiding under the sofa cushions:

However! We decided to go with the silhouette of the city, looking back to the original cover for episode 1.

Tremontaine S2 E11 - pencil

And it was so much fun to cut out. Sort of a Schroedinger’s Advent Calendar.

Tremontaine S2 E11 - final

Here’s a detail:

Tremontaine S2 E11 - detail

To avoid spoilers for episode 11, I have cut off all the captions for the thumbnails for episode 12.

Tremontaine S2 E12 - thumbnails

But you can probably guess life isn’t great for all our characters.

Tremontaine S2 E12 - pencil

Not great at all.

Tremontaine S2 E12 - final

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