For me, there is a whole different paradigm for creating effective illustrations than creating fine art from the mind’s eye. Just like when I begin a piece of art, whenever I start to create an illustration I can see the beautiful outcome in my mind’s eye. It’s so wonderful. Then, I start drawing, or painting, or illustrating on the computer, and suddenly I am at a loss. It’s like all my knowingness just flew out the window.

Then begins the work of my craft – research. I seek out models from which to draw. I’ve got boxes of old cuttings from magazines and books that I started saving when I was quite young. I also have  photographs that I have taken throughout my life.

‘ve been known to photograph models which I have staged specifically for the image I am working on. I have a collection of many odd things I can construct models from and have even used myself in costume, or not. As a last resort, there are always models available online to determine the angle of something, or the way something is “put-together.” One of the biggest boons to my illustration work from the whole computer graphics thing  is the ease of cobbing together a composite model from which to draw. That is very helpful.

No matter how I get there, my favorite part is when the illustration gets to that sweet stage, where I’ve gotten to love the image through my pencil, pen, brush, mouse or tablet pen. Even if I really don’t care for the subject matter, I develop a love relationship with the image through the intimate interaction using whatever media fits the style I am to accomplish. That is grace blessing me in the process of allowing it to flow freely through me.

Actually, it not only doesn’t matter which media, or style, but it is the same for me, throughout all creative expressions. I remember first experiencing that sweetness when I did my first oil painting – a portrait of my feet – at 13. I’ve felt it when singing, dancing, and preparing food. The first time with type was on a Gateway computer, in the early 80’s. That type on the screen was so sweet, it curled the edges of my tongue. My favorite though, is the sweetness of a fully created image.  Oh, yum!