23 March 2016

Getting ready for Summer Reading

It's that time again. Actually, it's well past time, but I've been MIA from the library for about 10 weeks, between physical therapy for a knee injury, a particularly tenacious flu that has lasted a month now, and some other health concerns, so I'm running incredibly late for getting started on Teen Summer Reading. But (since I am obsessive-compulsive) despite the fact that I'm late, I'm still planning to do illustrations for all my flyers. I have assured Anarda (which is mostly true) that making art for the brochure and flyers isn't work for me, it's fun.

It's also not quite as daunting as last year, because we are scaling back a bit on the number and variety of programs. (See health concerns, above.) Book Cafe was such a success last year that we will be repeating our plan to do four of those, so that's just one illustration; and we have four or five other programs, max, for which we will need flyers.

The theme this year was problematic, because the State Library and the American Library Association insist on connecting the theme for summer reading to things that don't really relate very well to reading! This time it's the Summer Olympics, so everything is supposed to be about health and activity and games. But if you know anything about kids and teens who actually come to the library and want to sign up for summer reading, it's that they're not generally the athletic set (those teens are at tennis camp and swim practice), they are the ones who think a summer spent sitting in the corner with a good book is a summer well spent! So we are struggling to come up with thematic programming, which means using an exceedingly loose interpretation of "Get Your Game On."

One program we are doing, at our Northwest Library where there is no auditorium so the programs have to be outdoors in the adjacent park and parking lot, is directly related to athletics: We have hired a group called StuntMasters to come out and present a BMX Bike Show, with stunt riding and ramps. We think this program will appeal not only to teens but to their (terrified) parents and younger siblings, so we anticipate a good turnout!

Here is my interpretation, for the flyer, of a BMX rider catching some air:

I'm trying something a little different, inspired by the art of a Facebook friend--a monochromatic approach to the illustrations. My plan is to pick one, two, or at most three colors, plus grays, to render each of my subjects, and give each flyer a different color spectrum to make them stand out from each other. Next is a new interpretation of the coffee cup and books for Book Cafe, in warm browns and rose-red.

This is LePen and watercolor--Cobalt Blue, Payne's Gray, and a little mix of Burnt Sienna with an unidentified rose color I had in my palate for the skin tones.

More to come...