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I’ve got a review over at BookPage (here) of Matthew Olshan’s newest picture book, A Voyage in the Clouds: The (Mostly) True Story of the First International Flight by Balloon in 1785 (Margaret Ferguson Books/FSG, October 2016), illustrated by Sophie Blackall.
Sophie’s here today to share some reference images, early sketches, and final art. Here’s what she had to say about it:
I spent time in the V&A museum in London where they have all sorts of balloon paraphernalia. Balloon flight took the world by storm and influenced everything from cocktails to hats. There’s a drawing [below] I’ve included of a man and woman with balloon-inspired outfits. I’ve also thrown in a rather lewd cartoon from the time, which no doubt was funny in 1784, but in the light of Donald Trump seems sort of depressing. But it does show the illustration style of using speech balloons, which I borrowed throughout the book!
Sophie also shares below a sample painting for the next book she’s working on with Susan Rich at Little, Brown, called Hello, Lighthouse!