April’s illustrations – 52 week challenge

Have I said before that every week I think I am going to fail and not complete an illustration? Probably. Well, surprise, surprise I felt like that again this week. It’s not always down to the lack of time. Many times I wrack my brain for an idea for the week’s theme and feel completely stumped. But I can breath a sigh of relief as it seems I always manage something in the end regardless of the outcome. So here are April’s illustrations:

Week 14: Camping

Gelli printing, pastels, posca pens

I hadn’t used pastels for years so it was good to get them out again.

Week 14- Camping

Week 15: Ocean

Gelli printing, copic markers

Working with a gelli print plate always has an element of surprise which is part of the joy of working with this medium.

© Ramona Davey 2016
© Ramona Davey 2016

Week 16: Mirror

Copic markers, fineliner pens

I am enjoying developing my skills and drawing animal characters and felt quite pleased with this little ducky.

Week 16- Mirror

Week 17: Collector

Copic markers

I collect many things as a family historian, teacher, mother, illustrator and finally writer. I am hoping soon I will be collecting acceptance’s from publishers rather than rejections. 🙂

© Ramona Davey 2016
© Ramona Davey 2016

 

So now it is May with the following themes of grandmother, adventure, still life and ink. I wonder what I will come up with???

#illo52weeks – February’s illustrations

Week 5: 1920’s

This illustration was based on a photo of my grandfather’s cousin Mabel Benest.

Copic markers & fineliner

Week 5- 1920's

Week 6: Printing

I got a bit carried away this week with the Gelli plate, creating 3 different scenes.

It is such a fun medium to work with and I never really now what the end result will look like.

A lot of trial and error and pleasant surprises!

Acrylic paint and gelli plate.

Week 6- printing 2   Week 6- printing bear in forest 1

Of course, it was February so I had to do a Valentines version.

Week 6: Printing - cat & mouse 2

Week 7: Kindergarten

I did some casual teaching in a kindergarten class during this week and they were learning about ordinal numbers. Very comical!

Copic markers and fineliner.

Week 7- Kindergarten copy

 

Week 8: Horizon

I was born on an island and was lucky enough to see on the horizon other islands and France!

Collage.

Week 8- Horizon

Adieu February. Bonjour March!

#illo52weeks – November’s illustrations

Wow! One month to go till the end of the year. How fast did that go? I nearly didn’t participate this year but I am so glad I persevered. Here are November’s illustrations:

Week 44: Scandinavian

Funnily enough my Christmas decorations have a Scandinavian theme this year.

Week 44- Scandanavian copy

 

Week 45: Peace

Peace is much needed at the moment as the house is filled with builders all working hard on the second stage of our house renovations.

Week 45- peace 2

Week 46: Endangered

One of many animals that need to be protected.

Week 46 Endangered

 

Week 47: Play

I love this time of year as it gives me lots of excuses to play at dress ups. 😉

Week 47- Play

It is a busy time of year. I have had the joy of meeting and welcoming new members of SCBWIAusNZ as well as attending this year’s SCBWIAusNZ Xmas party. Here I am with the lovely Jodie Wells-Slowgrove and her junior fiction series:

Me and Jodie at SCBWI Xmas party 2015

Next week I have a Christmas end of year dinner with my fabulous critique groups Picture This & Down The Rabbit Hole!

I love this time of year even though it is hectic, thanks for stopping by,

 

Ramona 🙂

PS: If you have a connection to Jersey, Channel Island and are looking for a great little gift or stocking filler don’t forget my book is available here: The Jersey 12 Days Of Christmas

#illo52weeks – October’s illustrations

Week 40: Carnival

Copic markers & Artline pen

I am not really pleased with this illustration. I had limited time this week and it showed in the outcome but I still participated and stuck to my goal of entering on time each week regardless of the standard of work.

Week 40- Carnival

 

Week 41: Sweets

Copic markers & Artline pen

As you can see I had the event of Halloween in my mind. I enjoyed doing this illustration and am pleased with how it looks. 🙂

 

© Ramona Davey 2015
© Ramona Davey 2015

Week 42: Instrument

Gelli printing & Acrylic paint

I felt the need to use a different medium again and gelli printing felt perfect for this weeks challenge. I don’t play the saxophone (which may show in the detail or lack of) but it was fun to use the rollers again. As you never really know how the print is going to turn out the element of surprise makes this an enjoyable and challenging medium to work with, which is what 52 Weeks is all about, challenging yourself!

Week 42- Instrument

Week 43: Monster

Copic markers & thin textas

Well it is Halloween to day and what a perfect way to finish the month then with a monster themed illustration.

Week 43- Monster

 

Events:

Yesterday I visited Hachette Publishing House. They had opened their doors for paid visits. It was a great opportunity to see the inside of a publishing house, listen to the editors and marketers explain how the process of commissioning and promoting a book goes.

Inside Hachette Oct 2015
#insidehachette

 

 

 

 

Seated from left are the host from the Emerging Writers Festival (sorry no name), Suzanne O’Sullivan (Children’s publisher), Robert Watkins (Fiction and Non-Fiction publisher) and Rebecca Saunders (Fiction publisher).

Suzanne O’Sullivan likes you to be on social media, likes your pitch to be brief and often reads on her e-reader, so likes to see the full manuscript.

Robert Watkin’s said about your story that … “There has to be natural lows and peaks to maintain a reader’s interests.”

Rebecca Saunders said that to her… “the title is important,” and she “wants it to be commercial.” She also wanted to know what your USP (Unique Selling Point) was.

 

 

 

#illo52weeks – August’s illustrations

Phew! August was a busy month. going back to casual teaching in a primary school has not only been nerve wracking and exhilarating but also taken up a lot of what would usually be my writing and illustrating time. But nevertheless, I kept on time with each illustration if if it was by the skin of my teeth. So here they are:

Week 31: Shakespeare

I decided to use good old fashioned pen and ink as this was the first thing that came to mind when thinking of shakespeare. he would have written all his manuscripts and plays in pen and ink, probably with a quill, but I didn’t go that far. 😉 But I did look for a Shakespeare quote to help me with my idea.

Week 31- Shakespeare
© Ramona Davey 2015

 

Week 32: Fabric

I am still keen to keep improving my digital skills and The Princess & The Pea came to mind.

Week 32- Fabric
© Ramona Davey 2015

 

Week 33: Mythology

Drawing characters is also another area I want to improve, especially cute ones like this little fella in his dressing up outfit as Medusa. I think Book Week must have been on my mind as my kids were dressing up during this week for Book Character parade. My daughter went as Tweedle Dee and my son as Asterix, although living in Australia not many of his friends knew who he was, in jersey they would have done, especially being only a couple of hours away from France.

© Ramona Davey 2015
© Ramona Davey 2015

 

Week 34: Japan

This one was tricky for me. I had never been to Japan so couldn’t draw from memories. So I decided to do another little character/figurine.

© Ramona Davey 2015
© Ramona Davey 2015

 

And then finally the full results for the CYA Conference Writers Competition arrived in my inbox. You can go to this link here: Final results. Initially you get to find out whether or not you are shortlisted, which I was and you can read about it here: CYA Conference 2015. Then you get the judges feedback which is so valuable but this doesn’t tell you where you came in the ratings but the Final results do.

So here are my results:

Category 1 – Picture Books – Preschool ~ Suzanne O’Sullivan, Lothian Books, Hachette – my manuscript TEN LITTLE RANGERS came 9th out of 107 entries.

Category 2 – Picture Books – Primary ~ Suzanne O’Sullivan, Lothian Books, Hachette – my manuscript THREE GREEDY PIGS came 7th out of 147 entries.

Category 4a – Chapter Books ~ Suzanne O’Sullivan, Lothian Books, Hachette. – my manuscript THE WOODLINGS came 1st out of 16 entries. 🙂

Category 4b – Chapter Books ~ Suzanne O’Sullivan, Lothian Books, Hachette. – my manuscript SIRONA”S SECRET came 3rd out of 36 entries.

I like to know where I am placed. It help me see whether or not I am improving, which manuscript is my strongest and most appealing to it’s reader and which manuscripts to get polishing ready for submitting to editors/publishers.

This weeks’ illustration is Week 35: Botany.

#illo52weeks – July’s Illustrations

July has been a cold month. But I  have still managed to submit 3 manuscripts:

  1. for a monthly short story blog
  2. for a Writer’s Unleashed picture book competition (deadline has now closed)
  3. to an editor that I had a consultation with at the CYA Conference (fingers crossed she likes!)

And I have kept up to date with my weekly illustrations, so here goes:

Week 26: Land

I really enjoyed getting familiar with Illustrator Adobe again. I am hoping to improve my digital skills. This illustration is lovely and simple but one day i would like to be able to include interesting textures. It was a particularly cold week, hence the arctic theme.

© Ramona Davey 2015
© Ramona Davey 2015

 

Week 27: Style

I loved spending time creating this illustration. The moment I saw the theme i knew exactly what I wanted to do. My four year old niece Emma Rose, dresses up for every occasion even colouring in. I also enjoy collage.

Week 27: Style
© Ramona Davey 2015

Week 28: Winter

Yes, it was still cold outside and I had just taken the kids tobogganing as a holiday treat in Corin Forest, half an hour from Canberra. Cold but great fun! Of course it inspired this weeks theme in digital medium. I was thrilled to see that my ‘Winter’ illustration was among the selection of Lisa-Marie’s picks on The 52 Week Illustration Challenge blog. Check out the other great winter themed illustrations too.

© Ramona Davey 2015

Week 29: Love

This was inspired by a photo I saw on the internet of a little boy blowing dandelion seeds off the stalk. My figure drawing still feels a bit stiff and is something I need to work on.

© Ramona Davey 2015
© Ramona Davey 2015

Week 30: Portrait

I can not believe we are over half way already! As you know I am an aspiring children’s author. Therefore I have given myself the challenge that my illustrations must be completed in a style that would be suitable for a children’s picture book or chapter book. hence I have drawn this digital illustration as if it was drawn by my daughter when she was younger.

© Ramona Davey 2015
© Ramona Davey 2015

I hope you have enjoyed looking at my illustrations. I am always keen to know which ones resonate or are the most appealing to my readers, so feel free to let me know. Till next month – happy drawing! 🙂

#illo52weeks – June’s Illustrations

June is a busy month for me – lots of writing deadlines for a variety of competitions, submissions to prepare for editors at the CYA Conference this coming weekend (so excited and nervous) and the weekly illustration challenge to participate in.

Week 22: Childhood

As a child, my siblings and I had two rather amorous rabbits, Princess Leah and Luke Skywalker.

Copic markers & artline pen.

© Ramona Davey 2015
© Ramona Davey 2015

 

Week 23: Rain

Coincidently there was a lot of rain during the week of this challenge. I think that helped.

Collage, watercolour.

© Ramona Davey 2015

 

Week 24: Calendar

This theme had me stumped for most of the week. Then I decided to give digital illustration a go again after a long break from it due to not having the resources. By the way, my 9 year old daughter likes my digital illustrations the least. Feed back is always useful no matter how painful. 🙂

Adobe Illustrator (ignore the red lines around each month, this is a screenshit of all the artpages as I did not know how to get all the images onto one page.)

© Ramona Davey 2015
© Ramona Davey 2015

Week 25: Africa

I had so many wonderful collage creations in my head for this one but my hands had a completely different idea.

© Ramona Davey 2015
© Ramona Davey 2015

Well that’s it for June! Can you see a running style yet because I can’t.

Today, the new theme starts for this week – Week 26: Land

#illo52weeks – May’s Illustrations

Week 17: Fluffy

I really enjoyed doing this illustration. I loved trying to create humourous characters in as simple a style as I could (I can get bogged down with realism and detail).

Collage, copic markers, Artline pen 0.4

© Ramona Davey 2015
© Ramona Davey 2015

Week 18: Art Deco

I love the style of Art Deco in buildings and furniture and had never had a reason to try the style myself until now. I stumbled across a shop recently that was selling weaved card for a good price so i bought a few packets of a variety of colours. The card was the perfect medium for cutting and collage and the weaved texture added to the overall look.

Week 18- Art Deco scan
© Ramona Davey 2015

 

Week 19: Eat

More collage!

Week 19- Eat
© Ramona Davey 2015

Week 20: Melancholy

This theme brought out quite an emotional week on the 52 Week Illustration Challenge page on Facebook. As I fam trying to keep focused on picture book styles I thought about what kind of things make children feel meloncholic and being left out of the playground games is one of them. This little monster doesn’t like being left out of the skipping game.

© Ramona Davey 2015
© Ramona Davey 2015

Week 21: Stripes

This theme style was inspired by the photo below and the poem ‘Tiger Tiger’ by William Blake:

Screen Shot 2015-05-27 at 12.21.37 pm

I haven’t quite got the same level of talent as Brooklyn-based illustrator and printmaker JooHee Yoon but it is always good to be inspired and aspire to someone creative.

Here’s my version using gelli printing and Artline pen 0.4:© Ramona Davey 2015

© Ramona Davey 2015

It has been a busy month and the icing on the cake was the Sydney Writers Festival that I attended with my son to check out the Illustrators Battle Round. Here are a couple of my tweets at the event.

Screen Shot 2015-05-27 at 12.10.12 pmScreen Shot 2015-05-27 at 12.10.31 pmThank you for stopping by 🙂

 

#illo52 weeks – April’s Illustrations

Due to all the writing commitments I have given myself I have decided to post my illustrations for Tania McCartney’s 52 Week Illustraion Challenge as a job lot each month rather than each week.

So here are my illustrations for April:

Week 13: Transport

Pencil sketch & Copic markers

I had Easter on my mind.

© Ramona Davey 2015
© Ramona Davey 2015

Week 14: Whimsy

Biro on a serviette in a cafe 🙂

© Ramona Davey 2015
© Ramona Davey 2015

Week 15: Vietnam

Pencil sketch, Copic markers, paper, tissue paper

I like looking at this one. Although my figure is a bit stiff I am pleased with the overall effect. I am enjoying working in collage.

Week 15 - Vietnam
© Ramona Davey 2015

Week 16: Structure

Gelli printing, collage

Don’t ask me why the ice is pink. It is the image I had in my mind that wouldn’t go away.

© Ramona Davey 2015
© Ramona Davey 2015

It is Week 17 and the theme is Fluffy. I have no idea what I am going to do??? Or how I am going to do it yet…

#illo52weeks – Week 10: Night

We are often encouraged to create art in the style of a particular artist. I did this at college. I know that children do this in school with artists such as Van Gogh, Matisse or Miro. It is a good way to learn.

I love Chris Haughton’s illustration for Shh! We have A Plan. I tried to create an illustration in the style of his work but I do not have access to digital art software at the moment. So I tried to get hold of coloured acetate sheets. No luck. The nearest I got was celophane paper.

photo 2It kind of worked but reflected the light too much and ruined the look.

photo 1So I played around with the edit options.

photo 3I created another scene and played around with the edit options again.

Week 10: Night
Week 10: Night

I didn’t quite create what I had in mind but I do like the overlapping effect of see-through materials. I will try again some other time.

This week’s theme is GREEN. I wonder what I will come up with?