What I’m Doing at Kirkus This Week,
Plus What I Did Last Week, Featuring Mika Song

h1 March 1st, 2019 by jules

” … She burps pebbles, Henry thought.
And breathes underwater. And turns sunshine into colors.”


Over at Kirkus today, I write about Cindy Derby’s picture book debut.

That is here.

* * *

Last week, I wrote here about Jenn Bailey’s A Friend for Henry (Chronicle, February 2019), illustrated by Mika Song. I’m following up today with some preliminary images and final art from Mika. The art for this book was rendered in pencil, watercolor, and Sumi ink on watercolor paper.

I thank Mika for sharing.


Early character sketches of Henry
(Click to enlarge)


Early pencil sketch of Katie
(Click to enlarge)




Three images above: Pencil sketch, small color study, and final spread:
“At Free Time, Henry’s hope for a friend felt small. He watched the sunlight play along Gilly’s scales. He could watch Gilly for a long time. Katie watched, too.”

(Click each image to enlarge)


Early pencil sketch (final not used in the book) for Katie/slide spread
(Click to enlarge)



Two images above: Pencil sketch and final spread (sans text):
“Gilly floated past. ‘She’s shimmery,’ said Katie. ‘But she doesn’t blink,’ said Henry.
‘What does she do?’
She burps pebbles, Henry thought. And breathes underwater.
And turns sunshine into colors. Henry hunched into his sweatshirt. ‘Fish things.’
Katie bent to have a closer look. ‘I like her.’ Henry tried not to blink.
‘Want to play blocks?’ ‘Sure.'”

(Click each image to enlarge)


Another final illustration (sans text):
“The next day, they played on the swings,
and Katie went down the Big Slide.”

(Click to enlarge)



* * * * * * *

A FRIEND FOR HENRY. Text copyright © 2019 by Jenn Bailey. Illustrations copyright © 2019 by Mika Song. Published by Chronicle Books, San Francisco. All images here used by permission of Mika Song.

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