Change is upon my family. I got a new day job. My wife got a new day job. My son starts preschool in under two weeks. Change is very, very much upon us. And it’s okay. Things are going really well.
Work continues on Cowgirls Don’t Ride Zebras, in fact, I can announce that all the artwork for the book is finished! Here’s the proof!
I only need to create a cover image and work on the layout. I may also go in and make some edits to the text as well. Every time I am removed from the text for a time, I return to it and seem to cut and refine it more and more. That’s not a bad thing by any means. It’s evolving. It’s the first time I’ve created a children’s book, so I’m learning as I go. The idea for the book started very, very simply. There was very little narrative. When it became a play, I needed to flesh out the narrative. Since then, I’ve fallen in love with the narrative and the dialogue and the characterizations from the play, but they all can’t fit in the form of the children’s book. I’ve cut a lot out as I’ve turned the play into the children’s book. It’s getting closer and closer to the simple, non-narrative version from before. I may create a version of the book that is fully the early version and see what happens. Will I like it? I’m not sure. But I can try it.
I’ve been having an amazingly satisfying and frustrating time getting my artist hand back. I even had an injured shoulder from drawing... I was sitting on the couch, drawing for far too long in a position I shouldn’t have been drawing in. But I’m fine. The shoulder’s fine. I found my workflow, which was basically figuring out what apps and settings and brushes and colors I wanted to use. In the end, I chose Procreate, which allowed for the precise HEX colors for the characters, saving the color palette, and for easy rotation of the drawings as I went. It was perfect for “inking.” I still created the sketches in the app Sketches Pro. I just like the ease of it for getting an idea out onto the page. It feels most like my drawing book and less like an app. The less I put between myself and the creation, the better. The same can be said for writing apps. I have a hard enough time with writing, I don’t need an app to get in my way. That’s why I use Highland for my playwriting. It’s about getting text onto my computer. It’s clean and simple. And they didn’t pay me to say that.
I’m looking forward to finishing up Cowgirls, so I can concentrate on my musical. I want to get back into telling complicated stories and figuring out the story puzzle. It’s been wonderful to be so immersed in art, but my playwright self is really chomping at the bit.
In other news, auditions for the play version of Cowgirls Don’t Ride Zebras are taking place in Columbus in a couple of weeks!
Keep working and, as always, be excellent to each other.