Picture books in progress

 

2017 — the year of little blogging! That’s because I’ve been too busy this year working on new picture books, which is a good thing! Aside from juggling a busy legal practice and two kids (and all their activities), I’ve been working on two new picture books coming out with Tundra Books in 2019: Great Job, Mom! and Great Job, Dad!

The image above is not only a self-portrait my family — including our dog, Henry — it’s a sneak peek of some of the main characters in my new books. When I needed to design characters for the books, I couldn’t think of any better inspiration than those nearest and dearest to me!

In addition to felting, there’s always a ton of scale-model prop and set making. Here are a couple of images of a 1:6 scale soapbox car that I built for the cover of the Mom book:

And if you look closely, you can see the soapbox car in the scene which I’m shooting here:

This was one of the rare situations where I didn’t mind passersby coming to talk to me while I worked. In fact, I even asked one nice dad (out for a bike ride with his kid) to take a picture of me in action! I usually don’t get pics of me working, so this was a rare opportunity.

Sometimes, things don’t go so well on location shoots. For example, I set up a shot in a business park with this set on a Sunday afternoon:

It was an absolute ghost town in the business park. Even so, security came by after about half an hour and told me I couldn’t take pictures there. Luckily, I had already got the shot I wanted, so I was more than happy to pack up and leave. But really, does it look like I’m disturbing anyone?

And as busy a year as it’s been, I still managed to get an entry into the local zucchini races:

It probably looks like I put waaaaaaay too much effort into a zucchini racer, but the truth is, when you’re a semi-professional crafter, you already have everything you need around the house: black spray paint, silver and red stickers, and rub-on lettering. Throw in an old Darth Vader key chain charm and some old roller blade wheels, and voilà — a “Death Car”! (Big kudos to my sister-in-law for growing the amazing 6-pound zucchini.)

True to it’s “Death Car” name, my zucchini racer flew off the track and Darth Vader was smashed off. Oh well, you can’t win them all.

But back to picture books… they’re a touch over half done, so now I’m into the home stretch. I can’t reveal any of the final images yet, but I can tell you that I’m really pleased with how everything’s turning out. It’s going to be a long wait until 2019 because I’m so excited to show the world what I’ve been working on!

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