Tag Archives: Cornish Rex

Federation Square drawing and chatting tomorrow (13th June)

I might see you at Federation Square, if you are Melbourne based. Please say hi, if you are in the area. I’d love to see you.

I’m bringing a small number of limited edition prints to sell at the book stall along with signed books.

Below are some prints from the actual book, that will be for sale. And following them you’ll see some altered book prints which show the inspiration for the medium that was used in the book. But they also show the difference between the artificially created cream and the natural vintage book parchment.

My chance to sing lores JudyWatsonArt Ready Set Go lores JudyWatsonArt Thunder imprint page boat lores JudyWatsonArt Thunder opening spread seascape lores JudyWatsonArt

The parchment is naturally a much dirtier colour… which appeals to my inky nature, but the Allen & Unwin book designer Sandra Nobes very rightly recommended a clean cream for the book itself, and this is where PhotoShop was my ally. Thanks Sandra and PhotoShop.

tabby kitten lores JudyWatsonArt Cornish library tick cat lores JudyWatsonArt

Cornish Cat working on the weekend :)

profile alice cat judywatsonart loresPhew! That’s half the spread fixed.

I spent a day on Thursday working on this page, and was really unhappy with the results at the end of the day, so it was back to the drawing board and a re-work of this character group. It might not have mattered so much if it were a busy page. But this is a section of the still page. It has to be right…

err… now I’m looking and finding a few things I might tweak… But not today. Time to spend time with my boys.

So the page 25 Cat-Called-Thunder and Alice are working to my satisfaction. I’ve just got to finish off the seven other members of the family! (laughs hysterically)

 

Title Page complete

Yes! I have just delivered the title page illustration for Thunderstorm Dancing.

It’s not the last picture to finish, but it feels significant.

cornish cats in the grass judywatsonart lores

Here are some Cornish Rex cats in the grass; working sketches for the title page group.

Tommy title page snippetAnd a fragment of the finished image. Tommy, bucket in hand, off to play on the sand dunes with brother, sister, dog and cat!

It’s understood that only picture book Cornish Rex cats and Whippets will play on the sand dunes in windy weather with a storm on the horizon.

Thanks goodness for my hard-earned Picture Book Licence. :-)

 

endpapers instead of Endpapers

I’m working flat out to finish Thunderstorm Dancing before the end of the month, so I haven’t much time to post here. Nor is there much to post, because the illos for the book are under wraps until publication… apart from small snippets.

Yesterday I finished the endpapers for the back of the book. Today I’ll hopefully finish the front endpapers. I suppose it could be okay to post a bit of an endpaper on Endpapers.

Here’s part of the back endpapers.

Cornish Cat called Thunder

Cornish Cat called Thunder with seagulls and afternoon tea

And here’s my very hurried 52 Week Illustration Challenge contribution for this week (Under the Sea) which I made with some leftover fish bones drawn for Thunder endpapers. I’m sure leftover fish bones are an under-utilised art material…

This didn’t really work, because I was hurrying so much. Having said that, the imperfect, rough edges on everything are deliberate. I like the rough prickliness of the pasted fish and seaweed drawings, which gives them a fossilised or desiccated look.

Halloween Under the Sea

Halloween Under the Sea

Both of these works are made using drawings done with Prismacolour Artstick, scanned and coloured in PhotoShop, on top of watercolour and ink background washes.

Oh, and lastly, just this little fragment from one of my illustrations for the book. (The lightning page.) I love the close-up sections of some pages, with none of the action or figures present, making them abstract. This one reminds me of the skin of a whale swimming deep underwater. I feel I should paint a whale eye and put it in one corner. Perhaps later, when all is done.

Thunder lightning sky fragment

Thunder lightning sky fragment

 

Kitten Called Thunder

The paper clay kitten that dried out on our window ledge this week, has come to life! (And it’s madder than a march hare.)

kitten holding yarn judywatsonart lores kitten toy plain judywatsonart loresThe 52 Week illustration theme this week is TOY.

 

Puppet Challenge… Weaselly Wolves and other unfinished creations

Weasely Ones

Weaselly Wolves – painted in 2013 for ‘One Word One Day’

Finding myself trying to make Greyfur too anatomically kangarooish was making my puppeting challenge hard. Indeed, my son asked me if the incomplete Greyfur face was a dog or a deer.

Other subjects I’d earlier considered making for the Puppet Challenge had included the following. All have been covered by other puppet challengers as it turns out.

The Big Bad Wolf

The Big Bad Wolf is a favourite topic of mine, as I’ve been a fan of Angela Carter’s writing for many years, but he’s not a local myth like Greyfur. I also find wolves pretty easy to draw because along with their doggishness is the fact that the BBW is now such an icon, that he is recognisable in any kind of shorthand format and is way above any kind of need for anatomical realism.

young wolf young wolves 10167981_483105751790707_574541033_n

Wolfish types (above), bearing little resemblance to Canis Lupus.

Puss in Boots

Puss is also not a local tradition. Angela Carter does a fabulous rendition of this fairy tale too. And as I seem to be obsessed with Cornish Rex cats at the moment, my Puss in Boots sketches were distinctly Cornish in flavour; black, big-eyed, big-eared, narrow-framed.

This one was for the 52-week Illustration challenge, but I was thinking about Puss in Boots for the puppet challenge at the time.

This one was for the 52-week Illustration challenge, but I was thinking about Puss in Boots for the puppet challenge at the time.

first sketch, always too naturalistic, but he almost captures the devil-may-care nonchalant cat personality I was going for.

first sketch, always too naturalistic, but he almost captures the devil-may-care nonchalant cat personality I was going for.

shadow puppet perhaps? I like the idea of the sail-like ears being semi-transparent and the rest being solid black card.

shadow puppet perhaps? I liked the idea of the sail-like ears being semi-transparent and the rest being solid black card.

a further attempt to get whole figure on the page!

a further attempt to get whole figure on the page!

marionette?

marionette? With Yarn body and wooden boots?

black yarn knitted or crocheted body?

black yarn knitted or crocheted body?

puss in boots 6

Back to the shadow puppet idea. I drew the shadow puppet ogre and the mouse that he turns into, foolish fellow. I also drew the king and had a couple of goes at the lad.

puss in boots 7

 

puss in boots 8

Troll with Billy Goats Gruff

We live by a creek with a bridge so this had some local relevance. And this was the first one that I considered using the crumpled paper for. I had it in my mind that the curling horns of the goats would look great if made out of crumpled and twisted paper. And I was intrigued about the challenge of making three goat characters and capturing the varying ages and personalities of the three (a theme I had a lot of fun with in The Middle Sheep by Frances Watts.)

Three goat siblings I drew for 'The Middle Sheep' by Frances Watts

Three goat siblings I drew for ‘The Middle Sheep’ by Frances Watts

I seem to have misplaced my puppet goat sketches. They’ll turn up somewhere unlikely one day…

Greyfur the Kangaroo

A couple more sketches I found while I was looking for the goats!

greyfur study 1lores greyfur study lores

 

So anyway… I went back to the wolves in the picture at the top of this post! These two rather weaselly looking wolves are plotting mischief together. Below are some photos of the fun and messy creative process the other night on my kitchen floor. The boys were having a fantastic time for much of the evening, playing with a sack full of puppets that I had tipped out onto the floor. Puppets really do inspire all sorts of creative play.

Two (Big, Bad) Wolf Brothers

starting point

starting point

eyeballs

eyeballs

one weaselly nose and some fingers with claws drying in front of the fan heater

one weaselly nose and some fingers with claws drying in front of the fan heater

three toes before strapping together to make a hand. I was careful this time to make the outside and inside fingers the right length.

three toes before strapping together to make a hand. I was careful this time to make the outside and inside fingers the right length.

strapping together to make a hand

strapping together to make a hand

adding a thumb

adding a thumb

two hands, one with a wrist

two hands, one with a wrist

two hands with wrists

two hands with wrists

positioning some eyeballs!

positioning some eyeballs!

adding eyelids

adding eyelids (with rough dots for pupils)

time for some teeth after the lower jaw added

time for some teeth after the lower jaw added

teeth side close2

I wanted the teeth to be very crooked and uneven

I wanted the teeth to be very crooked and uneven

both with eyes and with ears under way

both with eyes and with ears under way

All ears connected.

All ears connected. The Brains (left) has narrower eyes to make him look more sly. Brawn will have the lolling tongue.

Indian ink on crumpled paper. A very satisfying process

Indian ink on crumpled paper. A very satisfying process

Would you buy a used car from these two?

Black paint on. I may add more later.

This guy is just asking for a tongue now.

This guy is just asking for a tongue now.

would you buy a car from these two-2

tongue and teeth with some white added

tongue ready to attach. Teeth and eyes with some white added. Brains will have moving hands. Brawn will have a moving mouth. (This is probably rather counter-intuitive but there ya go!)

with tongue, painted mouth, bloodshot eyes and Granny's bonnet.

with tongue, painted mouth, bloodshot eyes and Granny’s bonnet.

Would you buy a used car from these two?

Would you buy a used car from these two?

This is where I had to stop. If I have time Brawn (Actually, I think his name is Willy) will get a nightdress slightly stained with blood on the front, and lacy sleeves from which will protrude his long, black claws over the bed clothes.

Brains (Hmmm… Ernest, perhaps, because he’s anything but earnest) will have working arms, but I’m not really happy with the high attachment I’ve started here. I think he’d be more impressive without such a distorted scale. I might give him long arms and move them with rods instead so that they can creep in from the side in a lurking sort of way. I think these two should look rather long and rangy like their original drawing, rather than dwarfed versions of themselves.

Weasely Ones

I’d love to add whiskers, but not sure where to get those twirly feathers from that people use on puppets. I could modify some of my chickens’ feathers I guess…  But I’ll have to leave these rascals for now.