Archive for December 2012

From Idea to Illustration: An Unexpected Journey



I want to share some of the amazing before and after photos of the book, “Jellybeans Morning, Noon & Night.”

To help provide my illustrator with some direction for the illustrations in the story, I spent an afternoon taking pictures of my kids acting out each of the scenes in the book. Given this was my first book and most importantly a gift to my children, I also wanted the characters in the book illustrated in the likeness of my kids. So this helped provide the illustrator with a guide to follow when creating the characters in the book.

Above and below are some before and after images. To the left is an actual photo of my kids that I Photoshop’d with a pencil sketch filter and to the right is what the illustrator turned the photo into.


Now this was one the most unexpected lessons learned along this book publishing journey – illustration!  I naively thought that the illustrator would just draw the scene, scan it into the computer, add my words and the page would be done. WRONG! So so wrong.
Every illustrator is different, but with technology these days an illustrator can do so many things with Photoshop layers.  Some pages in “Jellybeans Morning, Noon & Night” are made up of over 100 layers. The layers on many pages added depth to the scene or gave me the flexibility to change something if I didn’t like it, without having to re-draw the entire page. (Like I said – I was very naive).

Looking at the before and after images now just makes this journey all the more worthwhile. Look at how far this “idea,” this silly “story,” has come – from and idea to an AMAZING illustration.

Mission Accomplished: My Self Publishing Journey – Part One

Books Arrived

First Print RunIn 2005 while my husband was deployed in Iraq, I came up with this silly story about a boy and his love for jellybeans. Several years and another son later, I finally decided to turn this story into a full fledged book.

When my husband first got home, I thought that we would just forget that we were ever apart and start back up right where we left off. I was wrong. Being apart changed us. There isn’t a day that goes by where we don’t think about that time.

What I came to realize was that (in our experience) it changed us for the better. Don’t misunderstand, the time that my husband spent on deployment was very stressful for all of us, but it made us stronger as a family. That time is not something we should forget, but remember and appreciate.

I guess coming to this realization is what finally motivated me to publish this book … to celebrate that time we spent apart (if that makes any sense whatsoever). Having worked in publishing for more than 12 years also helped give me that extra confidence boost to start this journey to publish this children’s book myself.

It was my main goal to accomplish this as a gift for my husband, kids, family and friends. Anything else would be icing on the cake.
Mission Accomplished!