Saturday, August 31, 2013

Looking for my big idea....

I love to tell stories.  I think it's part of my heritage.  My father is a storyteller too.  We grew up with the anticipation and fun of dad telling a story almost every night at the dinner table.  The stories weren't pre-fabed or purposefully thought out to impress us.  They were just the everyday happenings of a carpenter as he worked with a crew of men.  But the way he told them were engaging and funny and kept you wanting to hear more.  He also admired great storytellers and would memorize passages of their works and recite them on occasion.  The works of Robert Service were some of his favorite and I can almost recite the whole "The Cremation of Sam Magee" myself!

So when considering what is it that I bring to the world, that I would like to share with others, I think it is storytelling.  But being such a visual person I like to add the pictures I see in my head when I tell a story.  That's where my art comes in....  So when considering what I what to communicate through this blog and through my art I think about how much stories move me and how I want to share that with others visually.   To create a sense of awe, or wonder, or just happiness in others through a story that is told with pictures is the mark I would like to leave.  So I began looking for inspiration in quotes about storytelling that might sum all of that up better than I just did.  I found this quote and really liked it because it speaks to the simple joys that make life special, that make us happy, that make us well.... like storytelling.  I hope you enjoy it to.

.... if you came to a medicine person complaining of being disheartened, dispirited, or depressed, they would ask one of four questions: When did you stop dancing? When did you stop singing? When did you stop being enchanted by stories? When did you stop finding comfort in the sweet territory of silence? ”
— Gabrielle Roth
reposted from:

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Thesis Beginnings

Great News!  After lots of discussion and advice from my advisor, program director and committee members, I received approval to proceed with my thesis idea of putting children's songs into picture book format for my MFA.  I appreciate the feedback I received from my committee and the time I had to rework my idea so that I can make the best picture book art I can.  I am targeting the preschool to early reader market and chose songs that would be appropriate for those markets.  One of the songs is about 5 Hungry Mice and a Box full of rice.  I'm very excited about this project and have begun some work thinking about one of the first full spreads that shows the 5 hungry mice and the box full of rice.  I have also been looking at and drawing mice!  Here are my fist three ideas done in a value study.  I would love to know which one you like the best or any suggestions you have for improvement for me.

The above shows a few thumbnails of ideas.  I went on to shoot photoreference of these and then chose three to turn into the value studies for the spreads.  In the studies I was working with three values alternating warms and cools to try and keep the value pattern simple and to lead the eye through the composition.  I can always find areas for improvement in my work, but would like your thoughts as well since sometimes we get so close to our work we can't see the obvious.  Thanks for your help:)