Sunday, March 6, 2011

'Walking Through Walls' is a work in progress.

   Being a new contributor, as of today, I wanted to share my current WIP, Walking Through Walls, by Karen Cioffi (releasing May 2011 from 4RV Publishing). Most of the same post will be available on my own blog, directing them to here too, so that I can introduce my current readers to this blog, as well.

Walking Through Walls is an MG (middle grade), novel re-imagining an old Chinese folk tale. There are ten chapters, and I have finished  seven, so far (one illo for each chapter). Here, I share two completed illos (chapter one and chapter five), and the last illo, a rough from chapter nine. As a matter of fact, I had hoped on finishing these up prior to the release of the ARCs, but I just couldn't work that fast (only had a month to do the design layout, the research on Chinese period clothing and harvesting tools, the sketches, and completed illustrations). So the reviewers will see seven completed illos, and three roughs. Oh well. It's an ARC, so it's acceptable.

I do tend to gravitate toward high contrast looks, but in this instance, I am paying homage to the ancient oriental paintings. The one done in black ink with nothing more than a stiff brush. The style is mine, and more modern, but I wanted the feel of black on black, like those.

Cover blurb:
Wang longs to be rich…and powerful. At twelve-years-old, he already knows more about the Eternals and their way of life than many of the adults in his village. Learning about these mystics takes his thoughts away from the possibility of working in the wheat fields all his life, like his father.

Wang has far grander goals.

ISBN: 978-0-9826594-7-2
Available June of 2011 (ARCs available now, for book reviewers - contact author or publisher for more info)

Now, let's look at the illos...
In chapter 1, we see Wang working hard in the wheat fields, in the hot sun, with his father, loading bundles in a wagon.
In chapter 5, Wang comes face to face with the Master Eternal and two student mystics, after a long, arduous journey.

Now for the rough...

In chapter 9, Wang is scheming how to use the magic the Master taught him, to steal from a rich merchants house.
As you can tell, compared to the finished pieces above, I have a bit of refining to do. Plus, there are two more 'roughs' on my drawing table that need finished, as well. This one will be time consuming because of all the detailing that needs added in the wall and doors, and the tree leaves. But that's okay, I have a perverse attraction to intricate patterns ... lol.

Thanks for letting me share my current WIP. I welcome any and all constructive comments.


  1. You are very talented, and I've enjoyed all your work I've seen.

  2. What lovely illustrations! You've done a marvelous job!

  3. I love the cover and illustrations! Thanks, Aidana.

  4. I am fascinated with artists who chose to tackle works connected to a particular point in history. Here you have chosen not only a very specific time line, but a very intricate culture as well. Looking over your progress thus has really made my day. Continue the great work!

  5. Thanks, Genetta.

    Karen, I am almost finished. So, is there a sequel planned? If so, I'm interested ... lol.

    Thank you, Christopher. I make an effort to be accurate in my work. There was even a point where Karen, the publisher, and I discussed certain historical accuracies about the harvesting tool used. I did an intensive search to make sure my drawing would be accurate to the period and culture, in that part of the world. The manuscript was even edited to suit the research.

    Thanks for commenting, everybody.

  6. It's a great story expressed by Midsuth illustrator

  7. I love the look of this, paying homage to the historic style. You must have done a lot of research and it shows! Wonderful stuff. These illustrations tell a story all by themselves.