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Thoughts on Rhyming Books…

While rhyming text seems to fall in and out of favor, I’ve illustrated several rhyming books: I Promise I’ll Find You, Lightning Bug Thunder, and I Love You Too, I Love You Three. And they were all fun and a delight to work on. Illustration from the rhyming book I Promise I’ll Find You, Heather…

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The Bestseller Syndrome

Bestselling book, Love You Forever, written by Robert Munsch, illustrated by Sheila McGraw, published by Firefly Books. More than 35 million in print. Presumably, anyone with a laptop and spellcheck can write a bestseller and anyone with pencils and paper can illustrate one, and anyone with both can write and illustrate a bestseller. However… hundreds…

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The Knife Thrower’s Wife A Novel Finds a Home Part 2

Excited to report that The Knife Thrower’s Wife is coming soon! This domestic-suspense mystery novel set in the Houston Texas area, is the riveting story of one woman’s mid-life coming of age. The Knife Thrower’s Wife has been acquired by an Austin Texas publisher and is due to be released around the end of September 2020. I’ll keep you posted!

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The Knife Thrower’s Wife A Novel Finds a Home Part 1

THE KNIFE THROWER’S WIFE Excited to report that The Knife Thrower’s Wife is coming soon! This domestic-suspense mystery novel is a departure from my usual craft and kids’ books. For more, please click HERE.   Set in the Houston Texas area, The Knife Thrower’s Wife is the riveting story of one woman’s mid-life coming of age….

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I Love You Too, I Love You Three The Manuscript

Join me in this series for a tour of the creation of a children’s book from conception to bookstore shelf.   Wendy Tugwood’s story I Love You Too, I Love You Three landed in my email inbox in the spring of 2014. There was something magical about her gentle rhyming story.   Over time we emailed and got…

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I Love You Too, I Love You Three Storyboarding

Illustrating the Book… Storyboarding. Once the direction and general style of the images for a book are settled, step one in the art-process of illustrating a kids’ book comes with the storyboard. Storyboarding solves the most basic issues in the appearance of the bookare a whole bunch of things: style, format, continuity, composition, interpretation, character…

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I Love You Too, I Love You Three The Style

Illustrating the Book… The Choices. The appeal of Prismacolor: gorgeous color, no water required, from Blick Art Supplies. This sweet book, I Love You Too, I Love You Three, (written by Wendy Tugwood, with my illustrations, and published by Firefly Books) turned out to be so well-paced, so well received, that it’s hard to believe there might be…

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I Love You Too, I Love You Three Slinging Paint

Adding Color The journey from this… To this. The story-boarding is done, necessary text changes have been made and all has been approved! Now comes the color. Mr. publisher says he doesn’t want I Love You too, I Love You Three confused with any previous books. Got the blues? To  diffuse the the sentimentality of…

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I Love You Too, I Love You Three Slinging Paint Part 2

Technique After some experimentation with new materials, I fell back on my tried and true method. Using a fine semi-transparent rag paper, which is pretty great all-round for pastels, markers, and colored pencils.  OMS — Odorless Mineral Spirits — a solvent, can be used to blend pencils and pastel. When using solvents, be certain your work area is…

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I Love You Too, I Love You Three The Cover Story

Choosing the cover design The final cover. Things I like in a book cover: I love negative-space, also called white-space (which can be any color but in this case, it’s a shiny clean white). Negative space isn’t wasted space. The functional difference between a shovel and a pitchfork is the metal that’s missing. That missing…

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Hi! I'm Sheila McGraw. Welcome, and thank you for visiting. I began my career toiling in the “sequin-mines” of advertising and fashion houses as an illustrator and copywriter. Then, in 1986, Firefly Books approached me to illustrate a little book titled, Love You Forever.

Welcome hyper-typers and paint-slingers to my blog about writing, illustrating, and publishing books for kids and adults; art, crafting, and whatever else tickles my fancy.

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