Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Day 2 interview- Dani Jones

Interview Day 2

Alicia Padron: Dani, judging by some of your beautiful sketches
of the book that you were required to have a Mexican setting in your backgrounds.
Especially since this is a bilingual book and the topic of Mariachi is
native to Mexico. How much research did you do for this book and did
you find it difficult to incorporate that into your style?

I really liked painting the desert setting in this book; it is a subject I've never really tackled before. I looked up lots of pictures and researched the kinds of plant and animal life that exist there. Of course, I also did a lot of research about mariachis. I found out about the clothing they wear and the types of instruments they play. Not only did I look for visual reference, but I also read many articles about the tradition and history of mariachis, so I understood what I was drawing.
I consider the research phase to be very important, especially in a case like this where I've never drawn the specific subject before. It helps me to be confident in the characters and settings as I am designing them. And if, as an artist, you are not confident in your subject matter, it will show through in the finished illustration.

Gina Perry:
Since the final product as a children's book illustrator is a
printed book - do you print your illustrations as you work to see them in that format, rather than digitally?

For figuring out the layout, the sketches were done on regular paper and pencil, so in that sense, I did work on the book in a physical form first. It's good to actually be able to flip through the pages and see how the story will work in book form. While I was in the process of painting though, I didn't really print out any work. I used a page layout program to see the progress of the story and how the illustrations were fitting together. The publisher also sent me several proofs of Mariachi before the final book was produced, which was helpful. I was able to send comments on some of the color stuff before the final was printed. In general though, I don't print out my work a lot. Perhaps I should. That is a good idea.

to be cont'd tomorrow...

Book Giveaway Question:

"In what Mexican state did mariachi music originate?"

A. Sonora
B. Jalisco
C. Durango

(Please leave your anwer in the comments section. )


Frank Gardner said...

B. Jalisco

Cool illustrations.
I love Mariachis.

zime said...

Great work Dani!!! Congrats to the group!!
The anwer is B.Jalisco!

Tiddly Inks said...

I really enjoyed reading all the interviews. Thanks for sharing the sketches and Dani's insights. :D