Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Bushland Lullaby Blog Tour

Asleep in a gently snoozing ball
Little possum's soft and small.
In a twisty tunnel and cosy bed
Little wombat rests his head.

Today we're interrupting illustrator Lisa Stewart in her light-filled home studio to chat about the delightfully soft and textured illustrations she created for the must-have new picture book for parents and grandparents, Bushland Lullaby, by author Sally Odgers. The calming, serene images and beautifully crafted rhyming text will entrance the most wriggly baby or pre-schooler as the pages are turned.

Knock, knock! Hellooo!

Hi Angela!

Hi Lisa! Thanks for inviting us in to your illustration world. Looking around, I have studio envy; you have so much space!

Thank you for wanting to blog about Bushland Lullaby. I was very happy I got to illustrate Sally Odgers’ beautiful words.

Yes, aren't her words divine? I've been enjoying following along with Sally's interviews for the Bushland Lullaby blog tour and have learned a great deal about the craft of rhyming, but my blog discusses illustration in depth as well, so I wonder if I might focus on the illustrations for Bushland Lullaby and your creative thought processes behind them?

Sure! I really love Sally Odgers words, and being an animal lover myself I really responded  to her message of not just thinking of yourself but the animals too.

Your artwork in the picture book, Can I Cuddle the Moon, has been so successful in Australia and internationally; the paper collage is beautiful. Did you use a different medium for Bushland Lullaby? Would you be able to tell us your reasons behind this choice and how your ideas for the images developed? 

Bushland Lullaby is a little different from my previous picture books in that I use more watercolour and am feeling more confident with that medium, yet I notice the collage comes creeping in so I go with it and I do so love the textures it produces! 

So do I! And I love the images below of some of Bushland Lullaby's artworks in progress, showing texture through collage and watercolour. Thanks for sharing them with us:

The wombats are purely watercolour with a little lead pencil, yet they snuggle on rice paper to represent the burrow.

Oh, they're gorgeous; so warm and snuggled together, a harmony of watercolour and collage.

Lisa, it would be terrific while we're here, if you might also share the process from start to finish for one of the book's double page spreads, perhaps starting with your research and rough sketches.

I do spend a lot of time researching at the library, sketching outdoors and at the zoo, and also watching David Attenborough documentaries over and over. I like to use sketchbooks and do think a lot about the composition of the page and text.

The koala and her joey are so soft in texture, colour and tone. It's wonderful to see them progress from sketch to rough illustration. I'm looking forward to how the final illustration comes together.

I have used watercolour, pencil and different kinds of papers that inspire me and remind me of animals.

The Australian landscape is muted in colours as in details like gum leaves and the grasses, so I wanted to have those colours that represent Australia and the feeling of wanting to curl up and go to sleep.

I admire how you've combined the various parts in the final composition. The collage gives the artwork a real depth - stunning.

Here are a couple more pics showing the papers and my side room I work in.

Wow, each leaf is carefully cut out and I love the freedom your large work space allows you to create beautiful illustrations.

Thanks for inviting us into your studio today, Lisa. And congratulations on the release of Bushland Lullaby. It's a picture book gem sure to fill a few Christmas stockings this year.

You're welcome, Angela.

Now bloggees, if you'd like to take home a delightful illustration from Bushland Lullaby, Lisa has limited edition prints for sale on her website here

Bushland Lullaby is published by Scholastic Australia

And I'm sure you're now really tempted to know how Lisa Stewart's beautiful illustrations fit together with author, Sally Odgers words. To find out more about Bushland Lullaby, why don't you visit some of the blogs listed below from the Bushland Lullaby blog tour?
Blog Tour

Spinning Pearls – Sally Odgers
1st September 2012

Writing for Children – Peter Taylor
3rd September 2012

From Hook to Book – Chris Bell
7th September 2012

Kids’ Book Review – Tania McCartney
8th September 2012

Reading and Writing with Dale Harcombe
12th September 2012

School Magazine with Jackie Hosking
18th September 2012

Writing Children's Books with Robyn Opie Parnell
23rd September 2012


Sally_Odgers said...

What a lovely visit to wrap up the Bushland Lullaby blog tour! Thanks so much Angela and Lisa for this. It was fascinating for an un-illustrator to learn more about the process.

Alison Reynolds said...

46rFascinating interview, Angela.
Gorgeous illustrations by Lisa for Sally's lovely words.
I really liked how the animals look so tranquil.
And so clever the way that depth was achieved by collage.
Do you use collage too, Angela?


Peter Taylor said...

This is a fascinating blog post, Angela and Lisa.

I love seeing other artists' studios and learning about their working methods and techniques. Sally's words are beautiful and your illustrations complement them perfectly.

All best wishes for mega sales!

Tina C said...

Hey Angela, Sally and Lisa

Wow what a beautiful studio - and lovely illo's.

No wonder the pictures look so real when you spend so much time on them, and making them in-depth with the collage - you are amazing Lisa.

Sally -O - wahoo on another beautiful book.

Angela - thank you for the tour of Lisa's studio - what a fabulous idea!

Good luck with this book - it deserves to do really well.

Bye 4 now

Angela Sunde. said...

It was such a pleasure, Sally. Congratulations on the release of Bushland Lullaby. It's a winner!

Angela Sunde. said...

Peter and Tina, I secretly love visiting other illustrators in their studios. It inspires me and I feel less isolated in my own art space. I hope this post has inspired you also.

Angela Sunde. said...

Alison, collage is a medium I have not explored to date. But Lisa's skills have shown me just how soft and textured collage can be. It enhances and complements the watercolour beautifully.

Anonymous said...

I am so honoured that the dedication in the book from Lisa is for me! Lisa is truly a beautiful soul & amazing talent. Delicious combination of words & pictures. So proud to call her my friend. LOVE xox

Dee White said...

UGreat tour for a beautiful book.

Congratulations Sally and Lisa...and thanks Angela for these valuable insights into Lisa's beautiful illustrations.


Angela Sunde. said...

Thanks for visiting the blog, Paperbirdgirl. What an exciting time for you and Lisa. It's such an honour to have a book dedication.

Angela Sunde. said...

You're welcome, Dee! So glad to have you here.

Sheryl Gwyther said...

That was fascinating, Lisa and Angela. I too love visiting illustrator and artists' studios so this was a great virtual one.
Collage is a marvelous medium and it was interesting seeing how you've used it here in combo with watercolour etc, Lisa.
Lovely book, Sally and Lisa. :)

Angela Sunde. said...

Hi Sheryl, lovely to see you here. Did you know if you double click on a picture it will enlarge? Then you can really see the texture and layering of each illo. Amazing!

Sally_Odgers said...

Thanks again; I'm going to talk up Bushland Lullaby at a meeting on Saturday. Now I'll sound as if I know at least a little about illustration:-)

Dale said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Dale said...

Fascinating to get a peek into the illustrator's craft.Thanks

Angela Sunde. said...

You're welcome, Sally. I'm learning a little more with each interview myself.

Angela Sunde. said...

Hi Dale, thanks for stopping by. It really is like peeking into someone else's world, isn't it?