Monthly Archives: July 2008

Art and Learning Contest Winners

Here are the winners of the Art and Learning Contest. Congratulations artists!

First Place: Jonathan Baker


Jonathan’s tutorial walks through some of his traditional painting techniques as he creates a pulp/noir style comic book cover.

I loved Jonathan’s tutorial because he used so many different techniques. I’m a big fan of mixed media and spontaneity, which Jonathan embraces in the making of this painting.

Jonathan has created a detailed PDF outlining his process, but as a bonus, he was also able to put together a video slideshow. Kudos for the extra effort!



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News: Contest Extension and a Twitter Feed

Hello all. A couple of quick items you should be aware of:

Art and Learning Contest deadline extended

In one of my earlier posts, I accidentally posted the wrong due date. To make up for it, I’ve extended the deadline, and I will continue to take entries from now through Friday July 25, 2008. If you were thinking of submitting, but didn’t, now’s a good time to send in those entries!

Sorry if my typo caused any confusion, and thanks to those who have already submitted.

More info about the contest here.

New Twitter Feed

I recently opened up a Twitter account. You can follow me here:

If you don’t know what Twitter is, it is basically like a text-only micro-blog. I will be using this feed to let you know what I’m up to and share interesting links. More info about Twitter here.

Note: A few of you were already following my feed when Twitter mysteriously decided to wipe you all out from my Followers list, plus all of my own subscriptions. So, if you were previously following me, you may have to re-subscribe.

Three Pigs Cover

This is the cover of a promo booklet I’ve been working on. I’ve been covering the process over on my other blog (my latest post here). Comments, critiques, or suggestions for this image and the rest of the project are welcome.

Illustrating a Children’s Story, Part 5

I recently wrote another post about Starting Over. Well, there was a reason that subject was on my mind.

It’s been awhile since my last Three Little Pigs post, and there’s a simple reason: I didn’t like it. Something irked me about the project and I lost all excitement for it. So I was left with a choice – I could completely abandon it or finish it. I’ve already made so many posts about the project that I feel an obligation to see it through, so that is what I’m going to do. (That was, after all, one of the reasons I put my process out in the public eye – so in that way, at least, I was successful. Hurray for me.)

Going forward, I could either take the sketches I already had and finish it, or do some major revisions. The first choice would be easier, but I’d be miserable doing it. The second choice would take more work, and would probably also make me miserable for awhile, but I’d like the product better in the end.

I almost went for the first choice. I was really really close. And you readers out there probably would have never known any different. But I didn’t.

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Book of the Month: Dr. Seuss and Mr. Geisel


In 1936, Ted Geisel wrote his first children’s story, called A Story That No One Can Beat. But he had trouble getting it published.

Twenty-seven publishing houses rejected Geisel’s story, deemed “too different” for children’s books. Frustrated and fed up, Ted started walking back to his New York apartment and decided to return to his career as a magazine humorist and cartoonist. He planned to burn the manuscript when he got home.

That’s when he ran into an old colleague from school who just got hired as a juvenile editor three hours earlier.

A Story That No One Can Beat was subsequently published as And To Think That I Saw It On Mulberry Street, the first in a long list of children’s titles from the legendary Geisel – aka Dr. Seuss – a list that includes The Cat in the Hat, Green Eggs and Ham, Horton Hears A Who!, and How the Grinch Stole Christmas!. Along the way, he completely transformed the face of children’s publishing and became the best-selling author in the field ever.

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Mariachi Book Blog Launch

I’ve just launched a new website to promote my second picture book, The Best Mariachi in the World published by Raven Tree Press. It will feature info, behind-the-scenes work, and activities. The blog will run from now until shortly after the book’s release in September, so give the site a visit and subscribe to the RSS feed to stay up-to-date with the latest news surrounding the book.