When I set out to illustrate my stories I am sure that I know my characters well. Yesterday I found that I needed to revise that certainty. I planned these owls to be painted in delicate watercolours, not pen and wash. The two little birds have other ideas. They are demanding to bounce from my pencil with energy, calling for a different approach to painting.
I like to match style, media and subject, and am versatile enough to do that. Whether it be oil painting, acrylic, mixed media, crayon or pencil, or even true gesso or glair, somewhere in my art career I have used the medium and can call up the necessary materials and technical skills.
I painted a watercolour gift of a soft baby owl over a year ago, I liked the style, and thought that I knew what these books would look like. Apparently not. Fluff and Scuff have different ideas as they evolve each day. I think that they prefer mixed media, using intense ink blocks (used both as watercolour paint and crayon) and pen. They are telling me that there is much more energy in this combination, and the gentle watercolours will just have to wait for another book.
Who am I to argue with the main characters?