Piper Picks the Perfect Pet has approximately 180 words (painstakingly crafted by Caroline Tuohey ), which is not a lot of words for a picture book. This excited me greatly because every word was perfectly positioned leaving me with a huge blank canvas to create the illustrations.
The ideas flowed VERY easily, in fact I think I had the first roughs drawn in a couple of days!
Sometimes I have too many ideas and this is where working with a great editor (Nan McNab) helps hone the perfect choice for the final illustration!
Idea 1 – goat (who is taking who out on the lead?)
Idea 2 – man eating lizard!
Idea 3 – goats will eat anything
Idea 4 – I love a blue tongue lizard!
Stretching the water colour paper is lengthy but a vital part of the process to make sure that the finished artwork is completely flat to ensure perfect scanning without any buckled paper creating shadows!
Detail of the front cover illustration.
I use a pencil extender to make sure I utilise as much of the pencil that is possible!
I hang finished artwork above my desk so I can use them for easy referencing as I complete that pages, it also keeps the artwork safe from any accidents!
Endpapers are my favourite especially when I get to do two different ones for the front and the back of the book!