Picture #22, Jimmy Jumps Down the Chimney

On Sunday we tried to watch “The Agony and the Ecstasy”, which has a 4+ start rating on Amazon. It was a boring mess, and cowardly. I say “cowardly” because the writers gave the 50-year old Michelangelo a girlfriend, even though he was gay. That’s the Hollywood of my parent’s generation, turning a blind eye, heads in the sand. I hated the movie so much that I actually took the time to write a 1-start review.

Back to my children’s book. This picture shows Jimmy disappearing down the chimney as he goes to rescue his crazy friend. Now that I’m at this point in re-inking the illustrations, I realize that I need another picture before this one, a picture of Momma Jay shouting to Jimmy, telling him to get away from the bird-eating chimney. So it goes. I’ll put that picture on tomorrow’s TODO list.

Re-inking everything, Procreate, digital line work, Children's book

#15 Bored Kids Do the Devil's Work

Jimmy is bored with his life. It happens to all of us, unless we’re living on a higher plane. I’m talkng about the plane where we look within ourselves for meaning. Jimmy isn’t there. He just needs some excitement. Fortunately, his friend Buddy is a wild child who’s going to disrupt everything. Hooray!

bored to death, re-inking with Procreate, children's book, making a children's book


#14, A Montage of Jimmy and Buddy Doing What Kids Do on Summer Vacation

This post almost didn’t make it. My Apple products started acting really bitchy and didn’t want to cooperate. I thought back to the desperate solutions I had to resort to in my Windows days, which included, at worst, wiping my hard disks and reinstalling Windows from 14 floppy disks. I’ve actually had to reinstall OS X several times just recently, when the horrible Mojave update caused me weeks of chaos. Apple, what’s going on over there in Cupertino? Anybody home?

Today I didn’t have to reinstall anything. I just rebooted everything, iMac and iPad, and it worked.

Here’s the fancy montage that’s intended to lead the viewer’s eye sequentially from the top left down to the bottom right. The line weight increases from back to front. The heaviest lines are given to the final image showing the boys listening to music in the pool. What a wonderful life they have.

boys_playing.psc.jpg sequential image, lead viewer's eye, children's book


#12, Jimmy and Buddy Drawing Funny Pictures of Each Other

Moving the story along, we’ve got the Jay family, along with Buddy and the two mice, moved into their cozy new tree house. The only dour moment, so far, is that Momma Jay has firmly laid down the law about staying away from that bird-swallowing chimney. This picture of the boys drawing each other begins the middle of the story arc, where everything is going along just great. We see the boys doing some carefree goofing around and having innocent fun. Their life is idyllic, and you know that can’t last long. It never does.

For Buddy’s eyes and Jimmy’s glasses I let Procreate smooth the circles. The arcs of Buddy’s thorax and antennae also use digital line smoothing.

More line work, inking, digital, Procreate, iPadPro

Image #10, Momma Jay Warns the Kids about the Bird-eating Chimney

I’ve got nothing witty to say today. Re-inking is a heads-down, nose-to-the-grindstone thing. The more I ink, the faster I grind my nose. Speaking of which, my nose was the feature I hated most when I was a teenager. I would look in the mirror in the boy’s restroom and say to my nose, “Nose, you’re ugly. You’re the reason everyone hates me.” Once someone told me that I had a Roman nose, and I took it as an insult because I’d never heard the phrase before. I thought it meant “big, ugly nose.”

Today’s picture is a work in progress. I created the blue line layer by creating a layer above the layer I’m retracing. I filled the layer with blue and set the blending mode to screen. I think the blue lines look cool.

Children's book, Digital inking, Procreate

The Picture Showing Buddy Butterfly Asking If He Can Join the Jay Family

The title of this post says it all. This is the 5th picture in the Jay family story. Buddy is on his own and wants to be part of a family.

Re-inking this image went smoothly because it had never been colored, and it was just a bare bones line drawing. The original drawing showed only Momma Jay’s head and neck. I extended the picture so that it could be used as a wide view rather than a square view. She’s also extending her hand and gently touching Buddy’s outstretched hand/claw/paw.

buddy_asks_to_join_family.jpg, re-inking with Procreate, children's book