A new picture book written and illustrated by Karl Newsom Edwards.
I had the privilege of working once again with Random House/Knopf Associate Editor Kelly Delaney. She edited my previous book, Fly!
This is a simple story about the stages of building a new friendship. Initially, there is some apprehension, a bit of shyness, and then we begin to test this potential relationship through interaction and shared experience. Is it a good fit?
No matter your age, the process of making a new friend is essentially the same.
I Got a New Friend is the story of a little girl and a puppy. The story explores how the new and uncertain relationship unfolds through the eyes of a three-year-old child and a ten-week-old puppy.
Both are a bit wary at first.
A bit shy too.
But things improve and a strong friendship develops.
Like most of my blogs, it’s the process of the process that I find most interesting. The story came one morning when I was thinking about old friends and what a good friendship is based on.
I honestly don’t know what the characters look like until I begin on my initial sketches on either paper or the WACOM.
Working with only two characters, it didn’t take long to see the direction this book was going. Here are some initial sketches of the puppy and the little girl.
A tad tighter in my line and proportions, but still exploring and getting feedback.
The puppy is major part of the story. She is female, young, and cute, so how should she look? Here are some early developmental sketches and eventually the shape of the final character begins to show itself.
Then I switch gears and play with medium and color. Should I work in conte, pencil, ink, watercolor? Time just to try different techniques.
It is fun to see how your character moves. In one illustration, the text reads, “Sometimes she’s stinky. But that's OK.” How to make the puppy smelly without being too smelly or just plain gross!?
The line art was Initially drawn with an 8B pencil and scanned.
Once scanned, that pencil line can be manipulated by altering the contrast in Photoshop.
I print that out on 100% rag paper and then tint it with watercolor.
The text is simple. The wording is intentionally ambiguous. For example:
Who is the narrator? Why is this friendship so special?
You’ll just have to wait to find out. I Got a New Friend comes out spring 2017.