Invisible work

I've been working hard on what I hope will be my first children's book. As such, I don't feel it is appropriate to show online until I get this published (hopefully!). Nor will I be mentioning anything about the story. What I do want to talk about is my approach and initial thoughts on the project.

First, this project is new and shiny, thus it is in the 'fun' stage. I have a lot of enthusiasm about the project currently and I hope to maintain a degree of enthusiasm through the end of the project. I think it helps that this project is MY project for the first time, and it is exactly what I want it to be.

The storyline I'm currently working on is one of a few concepts that have always been tagging along in the back of my mind throughout school and the past couple of years. I have sketches spattered throughout many of my sketchbooks that explore ideas and possible directions, some of them more concrete then others. I am happy to say that I feel my drawing skills have improved since those initial sketches because even though I slow down and slack off, I've never stopped.

One of the key approaches I'm taking in this book is to tackle my greatest fears and weakest points in drawing. The images will be full of hands and feet, complex expressions, and--the greatest horror of them all--perspective! I want this project to be a challenge that makes me push my skills as much as I can so I can say that the result of my first book was to make me a better artist. So far I've filled up 6 pages with preliminary concept sketches, and I have multiple folders of image references ready for my use. The more I draw, the more I'm eager to come back the next evening and draw instead of watching tv or reading books. I want to see how my own story unfolds.

There is only one negative to note currently with my project: I've gone to bed with so many ideas in my head that I've lost sleep. I even woke up in the middle of the night the other day and ended up drawing for an hour.