What was that?
How did this happen?
What are you doing?
Why am I doing this?
What’s going on?
Where do I go?
The more I create artwork intended for kids the more I notice certain trends in my work. Among these trends is the slight eyebrow lift (well, the unbalance of eyebrow) my characters wear on their faces.
Why do I do this?
Well first of all children’s book characters NEED life, personality, exaggeration and, to put it simply, CHARACTER. For me this means to immediately draw an eyebrow lift as the eyebrow lift is an indication of question, wonder, skepticism, humor. It can mean a lot of different things depending on the situation of the story…
The eyebrow lift can be a conversation with another character, a communication tool with just a look.
Or the eyebrow lift can be a silent, personal contemplation of the next step in the story. “What should I do now” or “Where do I go from here?”
Even a grim realization that has no questioning can be made clear with a subtle lift of the eyebrow.
Or BOTH characters can communicate with eyebrow lift to show silent humor conversation.
Some might ask, “Why just focus on the eyebrow lift? There are other facial expressions that can speak without words too you know…”
Of course! And that’s another reason why I love children’s book illustrations is because of the facial expressions. The reason why I focus on the eyebrow lift is because of it’s unbalanced structure and it’s questioning. Kids at their core are curious and representing that curiosity with the slightest mark is beautiful.
In a way the eyebrow lift is a peek into my illustrator personality. Some artists are known for their color or light or maybe excellent drawing skills. Others might be known for their chosen topics. Character facial features is another indicator of style and I would love to gather all the illustrators that I know and love and research which illustrators use facial features as a unique indication of style as well.
For now, I’m simply pointing out trends in my artwork that I can latch onto and understand how I can make my work my own.
So… see you later? I guess?