Category Archives: Miranda and the Martians

Miranda and the Men from Mars panels 9-12

Here are the next four panels for Miranda and the Men from Mars. Funny how my thumbnails get increasingly more and more refined the more I work into the book. By the time I’m done working up the thumbnails I expect they’ll probably be semi-polished illustrations. I anticipate some real challenges painting panel 10, what with the holographic display. I might have to do a test before approaching that one.

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Miranda and the Men from Mars panels 5-8

Here are the next four panels of Miranda’s book. This project is taking a lot out of me. My guess would be that it is due to the added pressure I’ve given myself to set up a really solid foundation to build on. Last thing I want is to not have spent enough time exploring different compositions and angles and then end up working on compositions for months that are not all that engaging to me.

In these panels, Miranda helps Bob as much as she can and the both of them travel to Mars, landing in a old parts storeroom. In some of the panels you can see faint indications of my center line where the page would fold and where I have lightly blocked in rule of third lines. It is sometimes challenging to maintain space for the fold in the center of the page and stay true to my rule of thirds.

On a half related note, I am taking a small break from nthe book while I design a ghost hunter game for my elder daughter. Naturally, I will post that artwork as I start making progress on that as well.

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Miranda and the Men from Mars panels 1-4

I’ve started laying out the thumbnail panels for my latest children’s book, Miranda and the Men from Mars. Since my last children’s book, I’ve made realizations on things I could have done better or more efficiently. One of these is to spend more time on the pre-production work, setting up character sheets, drawing out environments, refining the written material until I get dizzy, and, of course, spend more time getting stronger and more interesting compositions for my thumbnail panels. The compositions I came up with for my last book weren’t bad, I just felt some could have used more interesting angles. My favorite panel from the last book involved an over the head shot so I am striving to get to that happy place more in this new book.

Here are the first four panels in which Miranda argues with her sister, is awakened by noise from outside, and discovers a damaged Martian robot named BOB. You might notice the large white areas that have been erased in each panel. Once I’ve completed the initial thumbnail, I insert it into InDesign and place the text. Sometimes I need to move things around or erase more area to accomodate the writing. This is one of the most challenging parts of the process. Once the foundation is in there, I find it much easier to hammer away at the refinement of the details.

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Martian Sketches

I’m getting ready to start another children’s book based on some H.G. Wells, “Miranda and the Martians.”  The title isn’t set in stone and I haven’t written the story yet but I do know it will involve Miranda and some martians.  To that end, I took a little break from my animals as I gesso some more canvases and started sketching some martian designs.  I sketched out six designs and might try out some more though I am very partial to the bottom left.  I like the tripod tentacles and the face feels like it has a lot of promise.  Who knows, the book is pretty far off so I have time.  There is the animal book due before this one, after all.