July 26, 2008

French Endpapers and a Naked Mole Rat

Well, tomorrow I am moving to White River Junction, Vermont to be one of the 2008-2009 fellows at The Center For Cartoon Studies. All of my watercolor supplies are packed away, so instead of the next theme, I thought I would share some other illustrations I have been working on recently.

First is the design I developed for the endpapers of my upcoming collection of comics, which is being published in Belgium by L'employé du Moi.

First, I drew one object from each of the stories in the collection (a pair of glasses frames, a cracked bowl, a worm, a firefly, a turtle, a spray can, the big dipper and a skateboard. Then I chose a blue that had a middle value, with the idea that the black would stand out just as much as the white. Lucy Knisley was nice enough to explain a tricky method for creating a repeating wallpaper pattern (as seen on her LiveJournal background image) but for the life of me, I couldn't figure it out! So instead, I just copied the objects over and over and placed them "by hand" one at a time. I think it has a nice non-repeating balance.

The other piece I finished recently, was an acrylic painting of a Naked Mole Rat. I made this as a going away present for Rachel (who made ME a Dragon Coat!). Back in December, when I finished the Animal Alphabet paintings, I had two extra "canvases" which were already primed and ready to go. So I just used my same exact process from that project. The Naked Mole Rat is Rachel's favorite animal and let me tell you, it was a real challenge trying to make this repulsive (yet fascinating) creature look even moderately cute! Here's my attempt:

Alright, well it's time to finish up my packing and then hit the road. I'll be posting next week from the Green Mountain state!


cep said...

great naked mole rat Alec. A couple of years ago the Lincoln Park Zoo had them as an animal to sponsor, and we were able to get my dad a PLUSH naked mole rat! creepy...

Shelley Whiting said...

I love the naked mole rat. He is very cute and quirky.