August 3, 2017
I love to write. When it comes to drawing, I’m not an artist. So when I’m ready to finish a story, I enlist the aid of my team of illustrators.
The latest releases, “The Mystery of the Strange Chip” and “A Clue in the Barn” were illustrated by a team. Christina Tart sketched the design and Kimberly Tart used her new favorite medium, pastels, to color it in. They turned to a computer editing software package to add text for the design. The results are the new covers for what they call “old” stories. (Old, well, they were written when I was dating and just after I was married – so they are older than the illustrators!)
It’s interesting for me to see what my illustrators come up with when they draw. Sometimes what they see is not what I would have seen, but it’s usually much better! When Ann Pearson (one of my little sisters) illustrated for “Long Tail” her images of Long Tail and Red Hawk looked different than what I pictured, but they were so perfect for the series! Those images were colored by Christina and Rebeccah. Crayon drawings gave the perfect texture to the childish, fun, read-along Long Tail stories. (Ann’s running farmer was just perfect – you can see him in the DVD book and handmade book versions.)
Another new release is “Sisters at the Seashore” one of the Five Alive: Stories of the Funny Sisters. Jaquline did her first illustration job on that! She’s excited because “now I’m published too!” Christina thinks it’s neat that their names show up on the ebook websites as illustrators or colorists (depending on their role). Rebeccah loves getting commission on her work! (I pay my illustrators 10 to 50 percent commission depending on the number of illustrations in the work. The “Jilly and Luke’s Block Adventures” are 50 percent commission works because they are picture books – an illustration almost every page!)
At one bookshow I did, a fellow author expressed interest in my illustrations. Her favorite was “The Living God” because she claimed the “abstract art is amazing” and she commented that it looked like the open jaws of a lion. I’d honestly never seen it that way, but now, I can’t not see the open lion jaws when I see the book cover! I previously just saw it as colorful geometric shapes. (Christina’s favorite book cover illustrations appear to be random flowers, geometric designs, and scrollwork.)
As of the latest release, I now have five illustrators on my team: Ann Pearson, Christina Tart, Rebeccah Tart, Kimberly Tart, and Jaquline Tart.
Oh, and Jaquline’s second book cover illustration will be published shortly too – she redid the cover for “Birthday Present!”
Thanks for reading!
Type at you next time…