Wednesday, April 25, 2012

The Winners are...

First of all. You guys are great. This was the most successful giveaway I've had. I've loved reading your comments and hearing what prints in my shop you like.

Also as you may have noticed we got my blog up to 200 follows. Thanks! I am really working hard to create content that many people will like. I hope you will find value in it and continue to follow as I move forward.

Ok Now for the Winners.

The first prize which is a choice of print from my shop goes to Diana!
She chose the Pandora's Box print.

And because we got up to 200 followers I have some runner up prizes. (that's right plural)

The runner up prize is a Cadee and Cat print.

They are a very limited edition print and I have three left. They are printed on epson velvet paper and signed by me.

The winner of those are:
Celia Carpenter Rangitsch
and burmmy77

To claim your prize email me illustration(at)manelleoliphant(dot)com. I need your name and shipping address. And I will send them out.

Congratulations Winners.

Thanks all of you for participating and commenting. I don't hear from readers a ton and it is nice to know you are out there.

p.s. don't forget to check back tomorrow for the next page of the Ruby and the Skateboard blog a story.

Love this art? Buy Prints or Cards and Gifts illustrated by Manelle.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

200 = a giveaway

This is my 200th blog post. Ta Da!

To celebrate, and to get to my 200th blog follower I'm hosting another giveaway.

Cool right.

The prize is your choice of any small art print from my society6 shop. There will also be a second surprise prize if my blog gets 200 followers by the end of the contest.

Here is how to enter.

First do one of these things:
Follow my blog or
Follow me on Twitter or
tell a friend on twitter, facebook, or google+ or
do all of those things if you would like.

Head over to society6 and have a look at my shop. Comment below telling me which print you would choose if you win.

A couple other rules. 
1. This contest is only open to people in the United States and Canada. I'm afraid shipping elsewhere is just "more than the little rabbits can afford." (fyi: that's a quote from Miss Potter and totally applies in this situation if I were some little rabbits.)

Maybe someday when I am rich I will have a giveaway for only international friends, in the mean time please be consoled by knowing I probably have a crush on your country especially if there is a castle in it, or you invented Doctor Who.

2. If you already won a giveaway from my blog you are not eligible for this one. Sorry, I still love ya but want give some others a chance.

That is all.
Sit back and wait to see if you win. The winner will be chosen at random from the comments on this post.

The contest closes Tuesday April 24. So when I wake up on Wednesday if your comment is not there it is too late.  The winner will be announced on April 25.

And in the meantime check out my newest blogastory. (an online picture book story updated twice a week) The first page is here.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Ruby and the Skateboard

Next Page >

Here it is. The first page of my next blog a story. For those of you that don't know that is where I publish a picture book story a page at a time on my blog. My husband helped with this one. It will update every Tuesday and Thursday. My regular posts on Wednesdays will continue.

I hope you enjoy it.

Check back tomorrow for my 200th blog post wherein there will be a giveaway.

Love this art? Buy Prints or Cards and Gifts illustrated by Manelle.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Flying Puppet Magician

This week my blog post is just a fun illustration. It started out as something for the Illustration Friday theme this week but turned into this. It doesn't have much to do with the theme but I like it anyway.

And because I'm having so much fun with it lately I of course made it into a print, and other fun things at my society6 store.

Love this art? Buy Prints or Cards and Gifts illustrated by Manelle.

Wednesday, April 04, 2012

Wood Elves Returning to the Undying Lands for Illustration Friday

Here is a quick image of Tolkien's wood elves returning to the undying lands. 

Here it is in Black and White.

And just for fun I made it available as a print, laptop skin, or iphone cover at society6. 

Love this art? Buy Prints or Cards and Gifts illustrated by Manelle.

Does the author hire the illustrator?

No. Not usually.

The publisher does actually. In my vast experience illustrating children's book (it's possible I am exaggerating there.) I've only talked to the author once by email, and that was after the book had been released.

Here is the rundown of the illustrating a picture book process. No author involved on my end.

First we spend time sending our illustrations out into the ether of the publishing world and trying to make our website portfolios awesome. More on that here: "How Illustrators Get Work".

Eventually a publisher is going to email or call. For example lets call them Peachtree Publishers in Georgia.

They say, "Hi, how do you say your name?"
I say,  "Mə-nɜl" (Thank you Dashbo's math for help with the phonetics)
They say, "Hi Manelle, we have a project that we would like you to illustrate..."

usually a description of the project follows in this case lets say just for fun it's three board books (cardboard baby books) called In the Garden, At the Beach, and In the Woods, all written by Elizabeth Spurr

I say "Sounds interesting, send me more info."

There is a lot of discussion and emailing. Eventually if I'm taking the job, I get the contract and sign it. The contract will have deadlines, my rights and the publishers which are different for each project, what I'm getting paid and the deadlines for the project.  As you can see this can be a long process.

By this point I have usually seen the manuscript and once the contract is squared away it's finally time to draw. 

The first two things I do, kinda simultaneously, are work on the characters and the thumbnail drawings.

I take the manuscript and have a look at it. In this case it was already broken up by page so I just had to think of how to depict it. This is where I use my thumbnail process. (find more about that here and here)

Here is a picture of the thumbnails I did for "In the Garden"

Here is my original design for the main boy character in the book

After I get the characters figured and the plan for each page of the book I start to draw more detailed sketches.

Here it the first sketch I did for the first spread of the book. (what's a spread?) The words on this page are "Sun. Sky. Tree. Shade."

 This is the original thumbnail of that page

After I have more detailed sketches of the the whole book I send it to the editor and art director and I wait.

hum. hum. hum. la. la. thisisuswating....

Depending on the project you could wait for days or months. (Inevitably they will always get back to you at an inconvenient time, like for example four weeks before your wedding when you still don't have a dress yet. But they are usually willing to work with you. Life Happens)

wearestillwaiting and then...

I get an email that has changes.

I always know it is coming but I always get angry about the changes that are suggested. It's silly. Most of the time I try to be pretty good at keeping my feelings to myself, knowing if I give it time I'll be fine. The rest of the time I hope the people I'm working with on the publishing end are used to working with crazy illustrators and don't get offended or fire me.

In this case they wanted to see changes in the look of the main character, the size of the book, and some other small things.

I liked my first little boy and most frustrated about changing him. But had to admit to myself after we redesigned the little guy that the new boy was better.

Here he is,

and here is the new sketch of the first spread.

Next I get these sketches approved again.

In this case when I heard back there were little if any changes and I had the go ahead to do the painting. I'll talk more about the process later on. But here is my finished painting.

The book comes out May 1st and if you would like you can pre-order it now. In the woods comes this fall, and at the beach next spring.

Love this art? Buy Prints or Cards and Gifts illustrated by Manelle.


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