I’m working on several things at a time right now while taking a course on children’s book illustration by award winning author and illustrator, Kristen Balouch.

The course is called Illustrating Books for Children, and I am working out ideas for a book based on a true story about how my daughter wished and wished for, dropped too many hints to count, pestered us as if she already had her pug and ultimately attracted/manifested the pug of her dreams who showed up one day at our house and actually needed a home!

This illustration is a part of a larger scene that took place after he was part of our family where he is in the middle of a huge pile of stuffed animals on her bed. It reminded me of that scene in E.T. where he hides in the closet among all of Elliot’s toys.In the full scene, there are a few more stuffed animals which have yet to be finished, so I am just sharing this crop.

The class is really wonderful and it’s different from most other illustration courses I have taken. Kristen teaches in a way that brings out the imagination and, though we have a weekly assignment, everyone’s individual goals are different so the artwork is so varied. We are all either working on a story we would like to develop from our own script, using or adapting a story in the public domain, or simply working on characters in a cohesive world or setting. It would be impossible, really, to finish a children’s book in just three weeks since the minimum number of illustrations for a book is generally thirty-two, so I am focusing on developing my characters, creating a book dummy (Kristen taught us how to do this) and doing the assignments.

This week’s assignment is more about the setting of the story, so I have to get going on that tomorrow. It’s in my head, but it is time to get drawing!

After this course is finished, Kristen is offering a course on writing. It is called Writing Books for Children: For Illustrators. If interested in signing up, be sure to follow the link and check it out. Kristen has so much to offer, and I’m so pleased I took this challenge!

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