Thursday, January 14, 2010

Teenage Artist Illustrates Books

The Sid Series ~ A Collection of Holistic Stories for Children was illustrated by multiple artists—including the author. Yvonne does a fair job of drawing, but it is so time consuming that she had no other choice than to hire someone to finish the illustrations in order to publish the book before hergrandson, Sidney, started college! Here is a story about how Yvonne worked with Hayley John, a 15-year-old California high school student who illustrated four of the twelve stories in The Sid Series. She also came up with the collage design for the cover, which depicts something from every story in the collection.

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I love working with Hayley because I can give her an idea and a few suggestions and then turn her loose on a project. I’m always amazed at what she comes up with. It’s like she can read my mind!


I found Hayley when I put out a call for an illustrator by posting an announcement on my blog. Hayley and about ten others responded. I weeded through each one carefully seeking the right “look” for my children’s book. The quality of Hayley’s work was right up there with the adults who contacted me about the project. What I loved about her work was its versatility. She is able to work with just about any medium.


I had her use colored pencil to sketch the illustrations for “Old Things New ~ Learning About Recycling.”


Next, I asked her to use watercolor for “My Friend’s Skin ~ Accepting and Appreciating Diversity” and “Always Be Honest ~ Learning to Tell the Truth.” She excelled in both pencil and watercolor.


Toward the end of my book project, Hayley told me she was learning to do digital illustration and asked if she could give it a try on the last story, “Making Room for Brother ~ Coping with Family Changes.” I gave her the go ahead. I was more than pleasantly surprised when she sent me the files! I nearly cried for joy! They were so much a likeness of the characters in the photos I had sent her to work from. It is my favorite story—the one dearest to my heart!

To see more illustrations inside this book, go to Freado.com.

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