Christmas has come and gone. I like the holidays but I also like it when the holidays are over and things have settled down a bit. I think my favorite part of Christmas is painting presents for others. It gives me a chance to work outside my normal body of work and do something new and non-comic booky.
Last year I did a kind of cool Wizard of Oz painting for my mom. I liked how that turned out and was itching to do something like it again.
My sister is pregnant and the baby is due in May. At one time, she had mentioned that ‘Charlotte’s Web’ by E.B. White was her favorite children’s book. I thought that it would be a good story to illustrate as I did for my mom’s Wizard of Oz piece. It was also a great gift idea for my future niece or nephew. Everyone is thinking boy but she’ll find out in a few weeks.
So I bought a used copy of the book and got to work.
I picked out three key moments of the book and started to do sketches of the characters. First up is Fern. I sketched her out on Bristol board before I drew on the page itself. The used copies I pick up for projects like these are so loved and reread and worn that the paper is usually very fragile and would tear if I erase too much. I assume I only get one crack at a page so I try to be extra careful. I also can’t really make a mistake as I choose the pages specifically for the scene.
A side note: When I go to the used book store, I choose the copy of the book that is almost falling apart, a copy that is not long for the world and will likely be tossed soon. The way I see it, using a copy like that will allow the book to live on and be preserved. Any story that was read and reread that much should be immortalized in some way.
As for Wilbur, I draw pigs a lot but I wanted Wilbur to look different than other pigs I’ve drawn.
Uh, another side note. I have NO idea why WordPress is displaying these pictures sideways. I’ve been putzing with it for 30 minutes and changing it in Photoshop but WordPress keeps rotating them.
Anyway, I drew a few different designs and settled on one I really liked.
Once the three scenes were penciled and inked (Micron), it was time to paint. I used a combination of bottled ink and Copic markers to color the scenes and I really liked how they turned out.
Anyway, here’s what it looks like altogether and framed:
Oh, so this one is the correct orientation.
Anyway, I like how this turned out, I like how the Wizard of Oz one turned out…I think I’m onto something here…