Thursday, 28 January 2010

Jurassic Lark

This here little blog is, today, about some dinosaur illustrations I was commissioned to create by the National Museum of Wales Cardiff. The Museum presents a sound workshop for young children about the sounds dinosaurs made, centred around the story of a nervous young Apatosaurus "Albie the Adventurer". Albie is a big scaredy-cat - afraid that all the noises in his jungle are T-Rex out to eat him up. His mother gets a little tired of this and so takes him on a journey to show him what a magical place their Jurassic jungle is. While the story is being told the children get to make all the relevant noises - the roars of the T-Rex and the trumpeting of the parasaurolophus. It sounds pretty exciting for a four-year-old!

It's safe to say that this work has been the most fun thing ever. I started by purging Canton Library of their books on prehistoric life, and studied the dinosaurs to be represented in detail, trying not to waste too much time getting drawn in to reading the books (did you know Sir David Attenborough has a pleiosaur named for him?). I then simplefied them into cartoons, retaining a realistic feel in the way they stood and moved. I drew each of the eleven parts of the story in pencil on A3 sheets, then traced over with brush and indian ink. I scanned the inkings into my mac and added all sorts of textures - fabric, bark, cardboard - and shopped in backgrounds from the Museum's own dinosaur gallery. I then added colour, and text in both Welsh and English (he's also Arwyn yr Anturiwr in case you were wondering). They have been approved without amendment, and Grace at the Museum is planning to have a t-shirt made up with one of the illustrations for when she presents the show!

Anyhow, hope you like my dinos - any feedback would be much appreciated.

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