One of the things I try to do in my work is bring a sense of action/movement. This helps bring the characters and their world to life. Here’s a rough sketch of Bird and Squirrel trying to fly through a blizzard. I wanted to show them being blown in all directions.
For Bird and Squirrel on Ice I started out with sketches in my sketchbook. I like to work this way for a couple of reasons.
1. It allows me to get away from the computer and my office and move about. I’ll usually go to Starbucks and work there.
2. It allows me to freely sketch out ideas without worrying about the boxes/panels. I find that when I’m drawing directly in the panels that I tighten up and add more detail than necessary. But in my sketchbook I can draw whatever without worrying about mistakes or bad drawings. It allows me to experiment.
Once I’ve sketched out what I need for the story I’ve outlined I’ll scan them into photoshop where I can tweak them and place them in panels.
The other plus to working this way is that when I finish the book I have a sketchbook filled with drawings from the making of and I can take that with me to school visits or signings and show it.