The story for my next picture book, Messy Magic, is finally written. Yea! Yea! Yea! That’s one (yea) for each of the three major revisions the story went through, not to mention the dozens of minor ones. It feels so good to have it done! Now it’s time to move on to the illustrations.
While in Florida for a few weeks, I am working on the character sketches. Character sketches help the illustrator decide what all the characters will look like. Especially important are the main characters that need to be drawn consistently. What size and shape will they be? What will their faces look like? How will they be dressed? I sort of have to find them through a process of trial and error sketching and once they are found, I have to get comfortable with drawing them consistently. I am an early riser and by habit that first hour or two of the morning is my quiet, creative time. I usually spend it writing but now I am sketching while enjoying that first cup of coffee. I spend another hour or two sketching in the afternoon. While here, I can be found sitting on the sandy beach of the Gulf of Mexico sketching, while enjoying the sun and surf of Florida. I’m sorry to rub that in to my friends still in the winter cold. My characters may end up having a bit of sandy dust or slippery lotion to them… we will see.