Sunday, December 27, 2009

Kid Illustrations, Fears, and a Frogman for Good Measure

Here are some rather grainy shots of these illustrations I've been "working on" for my children's book portfolio. This first one is almost finished, and the second one is complete:
When I say that I've been "working on" them, as opposed to simply working on them, it's because I haven't really been working on them all that much lately. Mostly I just look at them, realize that I'm getting close to finishing the whole sequence, and find something else to do. Like this sort of thing:
Am I afraid of failure? Afraid of success? Maybe. But I don't really think so. As an artist I'm more than used to, and completely unfazed by rejection. And success sounds pretty good to me. I would like some, please. What I'm really afraid of is photography. It takes me a long time, it's boring, and I get frustrated. Skin-crawlingly frustrated. If my purple-blues come out right, my yellows are off. I shift my yellows until they're correct, and there go the purple-blues. I tear out some little clumps of hair, and re-shoot with different lighting and different settings, until (after about a thousand years) I get the colors acceptably close. I'm pretty sure that this process is what I've been avoiding. This is my first try at children's illustration, and feel like I've started to find my voice in that genre; a voice that relies heavily on fairly specific color relationships. My ultimate fear is that the work won't translate into photography. Imagine that you've written a novel in English that is completely based on words, phrases and concepts that don't translate into Martian. But publishers can only read Martian, so you have to find a way to translate it. And when you try, it turns out that every possible translation into Martian makes your novel mediocre or even bad! That's what I'm really afraid of. Metaphorically speaking;)


Larien said...

I really like this sequence,it's innocent and passionate at the same time.
As for the colours, taking time in the beginning (even it it's thousands of hours! (^.^) ) pays off in the end!

ArtSparker said...

Okay, I'm about to go completely overboard in the comments section. I have to admit I have a preference for the little animal-headed guys. The sensitivity of the rendering makes them convincing, as if you were just quietly doing reportage. I just...I wonder if there are possibilities here, in the less traditional style. My impression is that you don't take these as seriously, but they are exceptional. I hope you'll out some of these up on redbubble soon, just for getting some enthusiastic feedback and encouragement.

Kaetlyn Wilcox said...

Thank you both:) And Artsparker, thank you for your encouragement with regard to my little animal-headed guys. I do have big plans for them....just as soon as I complete some other projects I've got in the works!

Kaetlyn Wilcox said...

Oh, I think that I did come off as rather dismissive of my little frogman. In my head I was just being coy--since I love him very much!