Back in August I was working on a set of five books for a Korean publisher (this is the project that turned into a nightmare of Wes Craven proportions after the original five week timescale was dragged out to three months after lots of faffing about, unnecessary changes and language difficulties). Last week, I got the finished books through:
Yes, I am the sap who named their character after their boyfriend. No need to tell me I'm cruising near the top of the Spew-o-Meter.
They are not what I would call my best work. They wanted me to work in "real" paint and cited my book "Munch" as the example to follow. This was all very well, but I wrote and illustrated "Munch" waaaay back in 2004, and four years in a long time in Illustration when you are constantly developing and changing your style, usually subconsciously. So I painted it with real brushes and gouache and paper and everything, but I was just constantly reminded of why I now prefer to colour my illustrations digitally. Like, for example, when you've completed all the artwork, sent off low-res scans for colour approval, only for them to say they don't like the main character (after OK-ing him at the rough stage) and can I change his hair style? happens, you can do it all at a click of a button.
I have to admit, they have turned out much better than I thought they would. The colours have reproduced well, the endpapers (not my work at all*) are lovely, and the covers bright and interesting, even though they are not the ones I supplied. (But here I really don't mind as their idea was much better than mine). I shouldn't really complain, even though it was hard work, as the fee meant I could buy my toaster and sofa, not to mention a new iMac which should hopefully be delivered this week, and given me a bit more financial security over the coming months.
So this weekend I finished the remainder of all my other work. Pirates II was in the bag the weekend before, and Frogs IV finished Friday evening. This was an unexpected bonus, as I fully expected to be working all through the lovely spring sunshine over Saturday and Sunday. It was Boyfriend's weekend off, so he was down and we spent a lovely day wandering through Stanmer Park, getting the bus into town for a few purchases, eating ginger cake at The Sanctuary and scoffing a Grubbs on the seafront in the early evening. So right now I am in a rather unusual position: a weekday with no work. I've caught up with the washing up, put the washing machine on three times and baked a cake. I think I will go out this afternoon and enjoy a bit more of the spring sunshine before it all disappears and make a list of what to tackle next....
*Edit: When I say not my work, they are, of course, my work, I just didn't design them. They took bits from other pages and made them up. Sorry!