Don’t try this at home.
It must be done on the train or, if you are really brave, in a moving car.
1. Take some freshly painted blobs. (see my earlier tutorial here)
2. Now sit down in a crowded location, preferably with somebody looking over your shoulder.
3. Take a fine point felt tip and turn the blobs into creatures. Do not wibble-wobble!
• Don’t worry too much about the person looking over your shoulder. Jiggle your page sideways until it nearly bumps them in the face. They may lose interest. Probably not.
• Do the fiddly bits when the train is on the straight and not about to pull into a station. This will work best if you know your railway line.
• Make your journey a long one. If you are worried about missing your stop, you will lose concentration. Do you have an auntie who lives a long way away in the country? Go and visit her.
Here are some close-ups, because I don’t really have any more to say.
Inspector Dog. (Giant Schnauzer x Greyhound. Possibly could be categorised as a lurcher. But this one only lurches when the train pulls into a station.)
Ernest. (Maltese x Chihuahua x Pug x Papillon)
Noir Dog. (Beagle x Whippet x Wire-haired Fox Terrier)
Muddy Madge. (Petit Basset Griffon Vendeen. Yes, really.)
This is Finn. It’s always good to have a fish in your repertoire.
This is Foxy. I could have called him Finn too. His friend is Frederica.
This is Dodette. She is uncomfortable with publicity.
This is Herman.
This is Gene.
This is a Woman of Mystery. She has laddered her tights escaping… what? No. No. You’ve got it completely wrong. She carries a pistol in her pocket and is dodging out of the glow of a streetlight while she trails a criminal. You’ll have to imagine the gloomy alleyway.
This is Alberto. He likes pancakes and reading detective novels, but only if he can read them in a boat.
This is Cymbidium Night Angel. She is rescuing a puppy from Gene. Gene was going to feed the puppy to his wife and family. Now Gene and his family will go hungry. But the puppy is very happy.
I did another page of blob dogs, but perhaps I’ll save that for another time. I was on the train to go to the HarperCollins Inaugural Author Workshop Day, which was very good. It’s good to meet some of the other people in the large team who make books, and it’s always great to talk with other book authors and illustrators.