Tuesday, September 28, 2010

October's Scholastic Storyworks Magazine

I am very excited that the story I illustrated for Scholastic's Storyworks magazine is out now! It appears in the October issue. You can view the interior of the magazine here:


The story I illustrated is called "How To Save A Baby Dragon" and is listed under FICTION. It is thrilling to think of all the kids around the country now viewing my illustrations. Thanks again to the Art Director- Albert for remembering my work.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

John Greenwood's Journey To Bunker Hill

I have a new book out this fall called "John Greenwood's Journey To Bunker Hill". It's published by Millbrook Press a division of Lerner Publishing and is a part of there new Readers Theater series where kids get a script at the back of the book and get to act out a scene. A really engaging concept. I will add the book to my site with images in the next couple of weeks.

The editor of the book recently posted a blog entry on Facebook about what it's like to receive the final art in the mail. It features the art from my book and they also shot a video of the art when it arrived in their offices about 6 months ago. It was an honor.

Here is the link to see the video on Youtube, my first time on that site!

John Greenwood's Journey to Bunker Hill Artwork

And here is the article. Thanks again Carol!

The Artwork Is Coming!
by Millbrook Press on Monday, September 13, 2010 at 6:00am

By Carol Hinz
Editorial Director, Millbrook Press

Working on an illustrated book is always exciting—you’re never completely sure how the book will look until the artist sends in the final art. Art often comes to us digitally (whether it’s because the artist works digitally or because the artist scans or photographs the finished pieces), but we still work with plenty of artists who mail in the final art.

It’s always a thrill when final art comes in. I carefully bring the package down to the book’s designer and let the designer open it. (I don’t want to damage anything!) The designer then spreads out all the art in the conference room and calls in the art director and me to come take a look at it.

When Craig Orback’s art came in for John Greenwood’s Journey to Bunker Hillby Marty Rhodes Figley (part of the series History Speaks: Picture Books Plus Reader’s Theater), we took a quick video so you can get a sense of what it’s like to have all that wonderful art spread out in front of you. Craig used oil paints on canvas for this book. The art actually came in a tube because Craig rolled up all the canvases before sending them. If you look closely, you can see that some of the edges of the canvases still have a little curl in them. I’ll also point out that Craig likes to work at a size larger than the actual book, so if the canvases look big, it’s because they are. You’ll see a letter from Craig that was included with the art—it’s a standard 8.5” x 11” sheet of paper, if that helps to give a sense of scale.

After we admire the artwork, we send it out for scanning. And after the high-resolution scans come in, the designer can place the art in the layout and soon we’ll have a finished book!

P.S. Yes, the title of this blog post is meant to be a play on the phrase “the Redcoats are coming” since this particular book is set during the American Revolution.

A side trip to Lerner Publishing

"Crickets, crickets". That's the sound of my blog this past summer as I have been busy working, and oh yeah busy getting married and taking a month long honeymoon! Well the calendar says it's the first day of fall today so now is as good a time as any to update my blog.

So back to that honeymoon. We were lucky enough to be able to schedule a 25 day road trip from Chicago back to Bellingham stopping at such beautiful places as The Badlands, Mt Rushmore and Yellowstone. The list goes on and on. We were also lucky enough to spend several days in Minneapolis the home of my tried and true publisher Lerner. They gave me my first book job almost ten years ago and I am eternally grateful. My wife, parter (still trying to figure what to say), let's call her Jessica was patient enough considering it was our honeymoon after all to let me pay my publisher a visit.

Below are some of the photos of my tour of the warehouse, bindery and main headquarters. Thanks to all who made me feel welcome especially Anna my editor who gave me a thorough tour of the offices. Also thanks to Zach my Art Director for meeting me for lunch. Enjoy!

Beautiful Minneapolis. Reminds me of Seattle in many ways.

This is the warehouse where all of Lerner's books are kept including around a dozen of mine. A dozen titles, not individual books!
Jess is wondering, "are all of these Craig's books?"

Next I was lucky enough to be shown around the bindery where the books are bound. I was told a lot of interesting information that sadly went in one ear and out the other. My fault not there's!

This machine looks important but sorry, I can't remember what it does!

Ditto with this piece of equipment

I think this one applies stickers to the books. Glad I could remember something!

A few days later I visited the head offices of Lerner. I visited 5 years ago as well but I got to meet lots of new people this time.

The entrance. I love the plaque. They are an institution in this part of town.

The main entrance. After this I forgot to take anymore photos. It was a flurry of warm conversations and handshakes. Thanks again everyone!