Friday, July 28, 2017

Balloon Lift Off

Happy Friday! Inspiration struck early this week for this week's colour_collective with the prompt color Portland Orange. Balloons! High in the sky with a kid holding on and being lifted into the blue.  This is about how it unfolded for me as I painted this in Procreate. I started with a dark blue background, then with a big, blocky brush I splotted on orange, red balloons in a new layer. Some green below, some lighter blue, a swath of sidewalk, a girl holding onto the balloons, then, of course 'cause there's always gotta be a dog, her pup standing beside her all concerned. Mostly I painted this with my finger, but the Apple Pencil came in handy with adding the final details, which is what was missing in my paint play before on the old iPad with no pencil.

I had a ton of fun painting this. I hope it brings you some joy viewing it. Have a great weekend filled with balloons and good times!
red balloon illustration by Traci Van Wagoner, children's illustrator and author
©2017 Traci Van Wagoner, all rights reserved

Friday, July 21, 2017

Summer Nights and Ice Cream

I had a ton of fun this week painting this piece with inspiration from colour_collective, Pantone 292 C. For my b-day I got a new iPad (just in time too since my old iPad 2 went kaflooey), so this week my paint play has been more involved and I got a bit more detailed as I played with the Apple Pencil vs. finger painting. I still used my finger to paint a lot of this, but with the pencil I was able to get more detailed and target my brush strokes more accurately, not to mention the pressure sensitivity. Some of the brushes and for certain parts of the painting, I still much preferred the direct approach of painting with my finger. It's been a fun experimenting. Much more experimentation to come. I hope you enjoy my process.
children's illustration by Traci Van Wagoner
© 2017 Traci Van Wagoner

Sunday, July 16, 2017

The Crazy Dog Made the Mess

My Dog is Crazy

Concept art for a picture book project

I didn't get a chance to post my paint play for #colour_collective on Friday since I got a new iPad! Yay! I've been have a ton of fun playing with that and my new Apple Pencil. This painting, however, was done in Photoshop. The color was Byzantium purple, and I used an old sketch from one of my first picture book projects I recently pulled off backup disks. I think I'll be taking another look at this story with this character and her silly dog who is always getting blamed for everything. I had fun with this trying to keep it loose and a bit messy. I hope you enjoy.
illustration by Traci Van Wagoner
©2017 Traci Van Wagoner

Saturday, July 8, 2017

The Treehut is Occupied. Oh my!

I forgot to post my illustration, Treehut Occupied, yesterday with the #colour_collective fun. It's never too late to share though, right?

This was another fun experiment with the color of the week khaki in a full-on monochromatic illustration. I started with a sketch from #inktober2016 dragons and played around with values in Procreate on my old iPad (new one has been ordered -- wahoo!), and then brought it into Photoshop to add final details. I love the idea of illustrating middle grade books, so you'll probably see more work like this coming up.

To be completely honest, I'm not sure I'm 100% happy with this one yet. But I did have fun, and ... dragon! I'd love to hear your thoughts. Successful or not? Suggestions? Critiques?

children's book illustration by Traci Van Wagoner
©2017 Traci Van Wagoner

Wednesday, July 5, 2017


This week's Illustration Friday prompt is LOVE. We could all use more love right now. The power of love can save the world. So, go out and love everyone.
Love makes the world go around
©2017 Traci Van Wagoner, LOVE