The Evolution of Red & Lulu

h1 December 14th, 2017 by jules

Early sketch and final art
(Click each to enlarge)


I’m following up last week’s Kirkus Q&A with Matt Tavares with some preliminary images, as well as a bit of final art, from Red & Lulu (Candlewick, December 2017).

I thank Matt for sharing.


Matt: “32-page storyboard from 2012, when it was just about the tree.”
(Click to enlarge)


Matt: “40-page storyboard from early 2016, with some finished sketches in place,
some doodle sketches, and some spreads with just a
two- or three-word description of what happens.”

(Click to enlarge)


Matt: “I put this dummy together of the wordless version and
shared with friends and family.”

(Click to enlarge)


Matt: “Another spread from the wordless dummy.”
(Click to enlarge)


Matt: “A discarded wordless spread.”
(Click either to enlarge and see spread in its entirety)


Matt: “Another wordless spread. We kept this image but
made it fill 3/4 of the page, instead of the whole thing. “

(Click to enlarge)


Matt: “Two of many discarded cover sketches.”
(Click each to enlarge)


Early sketch and final art:
“But their favorite time of year, by far, was winter. …”

(Click each to enlarge)



* * * * * * *

RED AND LULU. Copyright © 2017 by Matt Tavares. Illustrations reproduced by permission of the publisher, Candlewick Press, Somerville, MA. Preliminary images reproduced by permission of Matt Tavares.

5 comments to “The Evolution of Red & Lulu

  1. Thank you for this information. Red & Lulu is one of my favorite 2017 books.

  2. Whoa. Some of those “discards” could be framed. SO, so beautiful.

  3. Gosh I love seeing how a picture book progresses – even more exciting given how gorgeous Red And Lulu is. One of my top festive picks for this year, simply stunning.

  4. Good Morning before Christmas Eve, From Durant MS. Thank you for the posting of the story board, for to me it is like watching a friend talk and illustrate a story/experience in their life. Red birds are the most bossy of birds in our yard, the males Cardinals shew away the female Cardinals though each gender is in a group. Possibly from their nests? I enjoyed this artist story. Will find the work in the public library. atk

  5. Ths is a ravishing work in progress presentation of one of 2017’s most superlative picture book masterpieces! It has greatly enriched my own appreciation of an instant holiday classic! Wonderful work here Julie!

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