Sometimes you have to go with your gut...

This illustration is part of an assignment for our upcoming SCBWI Carolina's Spring Conference.  The assignment was to choose a stanza from Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star (or other selections) and create a double page spread. We were given feedback on the sketch and we are to bring a final version to the conference.

My original sketch does not look anything like the final version.  The original was "sweet" but it didn't create the emotional connection that I wanted it to have.  I was given clear and very good art direction on the first illustration, but it still was not working for me.  Rather than keep working on a piece I didn't like, I chose to go with my gut instinct and redo the drawing.  And I'm glad I did because I like this one so much better!

I was happy with the first illustration below, but was given a suggestion to add color to the mom and baby.  This is where I give a thumbs up to digital painting!  Color comps are so easy in Photoshop and make comparisons simple.

To be honest, I liked the color, at first.  But the more I viewed them both side by side, I found that the original, without the color, gave me that "heart" connection I wanted. 

The idea for this illustration comes from a place I love...and miss...rocking fussy babies at 3 AM.  Eventually one, or both of us would fall asleep.  But time does not stand still and these precious babies of mine have grown, married and will one day have their own 3 AM experiences. I am thankful to be able to share my memories through my illustrations.

So, when something connects with your heart - or gut - don't be afraid to go with it. Even if it goes against everyone else's opinion.  After all, if you are not in love with your work, how can you expect others to be in love with your work?!

Original Sketch

Until next time....if you have any comments or questions, feel free to contact me:
Facebook: debjohnson.1
Twitter: @debjohnsonart
Instagram: debjohnsonart


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