Elephants on the drawing board

by | February 2021

This story goes back to 2013. The making of the last twikga book, Tata & Squack – Mission Elephant. Only recently I went through my old sketchbooks and decided to add some of the pages to this post. For more sketchbook galleries have a look under the tag Sketchbook

The making of the next Tata&Squack was in full progress. The pictures we took during our visit to Samburu, Kenya in 2012 were valuable input for our work. But the little plastic elephant had to do some posing for me as well. Elisabeth Visser was working on the storyline in Amsterdam and I created the visuals in Hamburg. Now and then we met to brainstorm or we used Skype to talk face to face. The illustrations are a creative mix of photographies, drawings and collages. I loved that stage of the creative process, because all the options were still open. What would Tata wear? How would the “lead-elphant” look like? Which scenes of the story were we going to illustrate? The creative team was back on the drawing board…

Tata&Squack – Mission Elephant was published in 2014. For more information about the book, have a look in the portfolio of  Tata&Squack books

Sketchbook Mission Elephant

For our elephant book I did a lot of studies on the anatomy of elephants. Their proportions and how they walk. How to bring across their amazing wrinkly skin in an illustration? For Tata I developed a new outfit. The same old scruffy look but still different from the last book. For all my books I develop color themes and patterns. These I use to give landscapes and vegetation the same look and feel across the book.

Have a look at Wild Picha Stories…

The stories of Willem & Tanja Dekker Photography, far away and close to home. Books, awards, events and other stories…

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