To be perfectly honest with you, when I started out at the beginning of the long, winding road of becoming an author, I had no intention of illustrating my own books. None. I honestly did not believe I was good enough. And I think every artist is doubtful of there own work at some point in time. You just have to keep pressing forward.
Well, when it all came down to it, I ended up illustrating my own book because one of my own biggest influence's suggested it. My mom told me that I should illustrate my own books. At first I was still hesitant. Not because I didn't want to. But because of that little voice in the back of my mind.
That one that enjoys my grimace whenever it gets the chance to whisper, "You're just not quite good enough!"
But good enough by whose standards? I shared my illustrations with my circle who approved. And it was decided. I illustrated Destiny And Faith Go To Twincentric Academy myself.
Some people think the book's illustrations are great. Some don't think much of them at all. They are not "beautifully painted" or "masterfully created". They were simply sketched in a sketchbook. But why?
Some of my favorite reads as a kid included what I like to call "primitive" style sketches. I would stare at them for hours before trying to copy them. If these people could "sketch in books", why couldn't I?
Once of my major influences toward Destiny and Faith's style was, believe it or not, Ramona Quimby.
Louis Darling's illustrations of Ramona and her friends and family were rough and comical, exactly as I believed a chapter book illustration should be! And despite the fact that it is not a style many people would call a masterpiece, it fit Beverly Cleary's characters perfectly!
And isn't that the point of illustrating a book? To capture the character? Their personality, their essence, their humor, their overall being.
I think so.
One of the things I loved about Louis Darling's illustrations and the illustrations that I found inside many chapter books for kids was the fact that they looked like they had been sketched into the book.
Illustrators like Darling, who dared to sketch in their own unique style, are what truly inspired my artwork!
So if you are thinking about doing something, and you just keep hearing that little nagging voice in the back of your head, "You're just not good enough!" Ignore that voice! Go out and try it!
You just might find that you're better than you think!