I am overjoyed to report that I’ve completed all my illustrations for “Hunt for the Northern Lights” (working title.) My publisher West Margin Press is on schedule to print in the spring! I’ll be so excited to share this book with you when it finally hits bookstores. It’s a children’s science storybook about the aurora borealis. The award-winning author Elizabeth Rusch and her teenager, Izzi Rusch, wrote the text.
Over the past several months, I’ve painted the book’s cover, 17 full spreads, and 9 pieces of spot art. To achieve the level of detail I wanted, I painted the originals much larger than the printed version will be. So, this spring/summer I’ve completed 18+ fairly large-scale paintings for this project!
It’s been surreal spending so many hours in the studio, completing so much work, but not sharing much of it with the public. I’m used to sharing all my paintings as soon as I complete them. This is new for me! Suffice it to say I have a new respect for book illustrators. I’ll never look at a children’s picture book quite the same.
I’ve honestly been itching to share this work, but it must remain mostly a surprise until printing. I’ve shipped the originals to the publisher in Berkeley, CA. The team there will digitize the paintings, add all the text to my artwork and complete the layout of the book.
I can only share a few sneak peeks with you, so I’ll show you one of my very favorite spreads from this book! In this scene, the main character and her mom spend the day in Glacier National Park. They enjoy views of snow-capped mountains, fields of grass and rainbow river rocks. Then they wait on the shore of a lake, late into the night, hoping to see a glimpse of the Northern Lights.
(Shown here, of course, without the story’s text, which the graphic designer will add later:)
Similar glorious nature images fill the whole book!