Evolution of an idea: a rough sketch of a lemur in a sketchbook became the inspiration for a postcard for the February 2014 SCBWI Austin Conference. And then got reworked for an exercise for next week’s SCBWI Conference.

Lesson learned: keep pushing beyond the initial idea because you might come up with something exciting.

-Amy

One of my favorite things in life is to draw with my daughter first thing in the morning. This morning when we woke up in our cabin in a Texas State Park, I drew her drawing and “doo-too-too”-ing a little made-up melody.Lalena High-res

One of my favorite things in life is to draw with my daughter first thing in the morning. This morning when we woke up in our cabin in a Texas State Park, I drew her drawing and “doo-too-too”-ing a little made-up melody.

Lalena

Sometimes your brain plays (not so) funny tricks on you.

At Bearded Lady, we are each designing a card to have printed, just for fun, personal use, and I spent some time sketching last week for it. I decided upon a drawing of a cat and a fish in a boat, which at that time was just a pencil sketch. Then I scanned the image, and began playing with it digitally. Knowing I had just two colors to work with, I thought, “Choosing blue for the water would be too obvious. I should have something else be in color, and make it pop, like maybe red!”  And so, I made a red boat.

A few days later, I was looking at my bookshelf, and was really bummed out when I realized “The Sea” (or “La Mer”) had been sneaking around in the dim corners of my brain when I made that illustration. No wonder red and black felt so “right” for my drawing— I’d seen it before in this beautiful book! Goes to show you that sometimes these things truly aren’t intentional. 

I’ll still have the image printed, just so I can send it as a birthday card to friends. No profit, no harm! And by the way, you should definitely check out “The Sea” by Marianne Dubuc. It’s a lovely wordless picture book about a cat trying to catch a fish, that I actually first learned about at a Girllustrators meeting!

Caitlin

In this era of Pinterest, it’s easy to create mood or inspiration boards for anything and everything. I still love pinning real world inspiration around my studio. From the top: postcards remind me to stay loose and organic (Catia Chien, Liz Ward & a moo card by me); a set of photos taken by my nephew when he was two remind me to look at the world from a child’s point of view; my studio mate and a piece by Bill Traylor help inspire character design for a story I’m working on; Ed Young’s beautiful art in Lon Po Po…dreamy and lush; backyard bouquets and walking through my garden serve as a reminder to try new color palettes.

- Amy