Tuesday, August 29, 2006

The Last Drawing Is DONE!!!

What a wonder to think about heading off to be when it is only just past 11 pm! How marvelous to think about getting more than 5 hours sleep!!

The last drawing is done and they are all pressing beneath a huge weight to get them nice and flat for the photo shoot in the next few days. The friend whom I was going to bribe to help me is hip deep in Provincial Election work and as a fellow freelancer, I know that you can’t say no to work that pays, even if it means going on very little sleep. I called him tonight and offered another solution since our cameras are about the same power. If he can just set up the studio lights, I can run over there and shoot the pictures myself. I want to shoot all of them digitally as a back up because my scanner seems to darken scans to the blue end of the spectrum and that would make a LOT of calibrating before Wednesday’s deadline.

Tomorrow, I will shoot a very rough digital image of each drawing and use that for placement on the pages as I build each file in Quark Express. I can add the type and block out the placement of the images enough for the author to preview on Friday morning, even if I’m not using the final high-resolution photos.

Wheeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee! What an incredibly giddy feeling to have all of the drawings done! How hard it is to look at some of the pages and think “next time, I’d draw it from this angle....” When does that perfectionist streak ever turn off??

I have 2 pencils that now measure less than 1 inch high. I have nursed them along through the book, terrified that they would run out before I finished all of the drawings and that a replacement pencil would be as off as a different dye lot of floss. I may frame the tiniest of the two because drawing with it was such a funny thing to look at. Maybe I can get Mom or John (who just arrived for a week’s visit) to photograph me holding the tiny little pencil tomorrow.

How strange as well to think that this time last year, I was heading off to be She-Hulk at DragonCon in Atlanta. I do have a way of picking huge goals to accomplish and then crossing them off my life’s list. I do know that this will not be the ONLY book I Illustrate. As much work as it has been, it has also been a true joy. Wheeeeeeee! The Drawings are DONE!!! Time to build the final version of the book!!!!!

Sunday, August 27, 2006

Knowing When Your Hands Have Had Enough...

I’m SO close!! The second to last illustration, the second most complex of the whole book is almost done, but after almost 4 hours steady of drawing as soon as I got the girls into their jammies, my hands are starting to shake and tremble. It is time to put the pen down for the night.

Knowing when to stop is one of the hardest things for a slightly obsessive personality. So often, when I was younger and more foolish, I would push myself to the absolute limits of my endurance while working on an assignment only to crash and burn once everything was done. I’d get a massive cold or something as my body rebelled against what I had demanded of it.

Perhaps, now that I am entering my 40s (I’ll soon be 41) I am finally getting some of that wisdom that I so admire in a few of my mentors and role models. It is very hard to turn off that Type A personality sometimes, but after the “oops” a few days ago, I am just not willing to take a chance and muck up an illustration.

Since it is well past midnight, that might be another clue that it is time to turn in for the night. I love the silence of working once everyone has gone to bed. It is the only way that I have had my “quiet, alone with my own thoughts time” this summer. I am SO looking forward to the empty house to get my work done in once everyone goes back to school!!!! At least my pens didn’t turn into pumpkins at the stroke of midnight!