Monday, November 14, 2011

Preparing the illustration boards

During the time I sent the sketches to the editor, I knew it might be a couple of weeks while I was waiting to hear back from them.  What could I do during this time that would help me keep my momentum going with the project instead of just twiddling my thumbs?
I decided to prepare my illustration boards.  Here are the steps to that:
1) buy the illustration board (I got mine from Hobby Lobby...Mixed media strathmore series 400)
2) cut the boards to the right size leaving around an inch and a half of white space around the outside of the illustration area.
3) draw crop marks on the boards exactly to size (the book is 12"x 9" per speed...I also need to add a half inch all the way around the illustration so that the painting bleeds out a half inch more so that when they cut the printed pages, if they are off a little, I've got extra painting all the way around for them to comfortably work with.
4) label each cut illustration name and page numbers.  When it's time to paint a particular spread, I will have all my boards ready to go....I just get the right page number board and start tracing the picture down on it.

Trick to save time and be accurate:
You'll notice the last board at the bottom of the fanned stack has corners cut out.  This is my "template" board to help me put the crop marks in exactly the same place on every board...rather quickly.  I just lay that board down on top of any other board and make my crop marks by tracing next to these cut out corners.  Then I take a ruler and draw very light lines around the illustration area so that I'll know not to paint past those lines.  Easy Peasy!

I feel good about doing something with this gap of time that will help me with my whole process later.  It will also be rewarding to watch the stack of illustration boards get smaller and smaller as time passes...and that will be a great "visual encourager"!

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