Friday, March 19, 2010


Although every book I write comes from somewhere deep down, I think that “A Wish for You” is perhaps one of the most personal. Some of my past books have been flights of fancy, some have been inspired by a single fleeting occurrence, and some have been simply a nifty exercise in wordplay and visual concept. Sometimes, however, a book will combine all of those with something a bit more important, a profound life changing experience.

Many years ago I met my wonderful wife, Victoria. We had many adventures together and loved each other deeply, but at one point we knew something was missing. We wished and wished for children. Sometimes the wishing was sad because we thought our dreams would not come true, but after a while we were blessed with the birth of our twin daughters. It was more than we could have wished for. More work. More joy. More work. More tears. More work, but most of all more love than we ever imagined. This book is all about that love and excitement of forming a new family.

The illustrations for “A Wish for You” were created digitally, but I always start with a regular old fashioned pencil drawing. I love to draw. It’s probably my favorite part of the whole process. I then scan the drawing into the computer and work over it using various software techniques. For this book, I used mostly Corel Painter and a Wacom tablet. It allowed me to get the soft impressionistic feel I felt this book needed. The best thing about working digitally is I can always “UNDO”. I build up layer upon layer usually starting with a ground color first. I want to get rid of that white paper as soon as possible. It helps me see things better. The biggest struggle for me sometimes is to keep the energy of my initial drawings when I am putting all of this “paint” over top of them. I like a lot of brush strokes. At the end of it all I don’t want the art to look like it was created on a computer. It’s not as easy as it sounds.

I am very happy when I have completed all 32 pages of a book. I guess you could say creating a book is something like having a new baby. It is very often more work and tears than you imagined but is always a labor of love.

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