Tag Archives: fantasy

Writing and Illustrating – Process

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Currently In the midst of rewriting book three of the Conjurers. Bit different on this one, as I have my illustration process down. While writing the first two books, the style I wanted for the drawings was elusive. I had worked through my brushes, dip pens, inks, washes, and soft lead pencils. I had tried a dozen more styles and techniques in Photoshop. Ultimately the solution was simple, efficient and directly in front of me all along. I love doodling with ballpoint pens. I love the sketchy feel, the unfinished energy and the excuse to not have to be perfect. So, duh, why not do that? So I did and I have. I doodle everything in my notebook. Small doodles which make it easier to get the perspective and proportions semi-correct. Scan it in with the phone and tighten it up a bit in Photoshop and maybe a few rounds of details and hatching. Voila. It retains the frenetic energy of the doodle and still has a finished look. More importantly, it's fun. #book #books #bookstagram #bookworm #bookish #book #bookstagram #art #literature #poetry #booknerds #writer #writerlife #writerofinstagram #yareads #yabooks

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Speed Doodle from Book Three

Illustration from book three of "The Conjurers" novel series.

I’ll be handing over the manuscript for book three at the end of May. I won’t start on the illustrations for some time. First have to get books one and two all illustrated up. However, as I work through the prose, I take a little time here and there to whip out a speed sketch from one of the scenes. It gives me a chance to at least have drafts of the final drawings lying around. It also allows me to work out the style for the final images. Trying to keep them light and sketchy and moving.

I won’t be posting a lot of illustrations from book three as they will contain a lot of spoilers for the first two books. Never the less, there will be plenty more to post when the actual drawing begins.

A brief update on the book series.

Poster for the upcoming novel series "The Conjurers"

Time usually flies, however in the case of “The Conjurers”, the series seemed to have fallen into a temporal loop. Much of that was because, from the beginning, I was trying to do something different. Found a few potholes but also found a few things that worked. So where does it stand now?

My editor and I came up with a timeline with definitive dates and goals to get this done. A lot of what slowed us down was having portions of the stories told through sequential art. Prose blended into comics and vice versa. That’s great if you have the text finalized. We didn’t. So, change some prose and you had to change the drawings. Change a drawing and you had to add some prose. Round and round it went.  We made a few compromises on the scope of the illustrations and also put all our focus on getting the prose done.

This weekend I sent out book two. Now I’m onto the final pass on book three and simultaneously illustrating book one. That means book one is actually, really, truly in production. Which also means I should have a publication date soon. The next few months will be more insane than the last few (in which I was only re-writing one book).  along the fall through this rabbit hole I’ll post updates on the illustrations for book one and the manuscript for book three. Confused yet? Me too. That’s why I have it written down. Either way, I think the trip will end up in wonderland, which is not a bad place at all.