Mighty May

May I just say, I’ve been plugging away on this book!
Have I been methodical in my approach? Not so much. Do I bounce around each spread tweaking this and that? Oh yes. Each spread has its own challenges and those challenges add on additional time spent on each. Do I have a checklist of what’s finished or not? I don’t. But this is a learning process for me. I am definitely ok with that. I am confident it will all come together and be ready for print come late July, early August. 

I’m waking up each morning before my day job to paint, revise, tweak and just focus on this large task. It’s awesome to “own my morning.” This time is my time.

I think I’ve spent too much time deciding if I should do traditional or digital. Here is a couple attempts at backgrounds using ink and watercolor:

I like how these turned out but I knew if I had to make changes, digital would be best. Further down you will see that I keep the traditionally done ground and do a digitally colored sky. This will be the look for all the outside shots of this Christmas book.


I’m definitely a morning person. I think it stems from my paper route days many years ago. It would be one of my many jobs growing up.
My brothers and I, plus Mom would wake up near 6am each morning and deliver The Blade -Toledo’s newspaper, in our neighborhood.
Mom would provide a key role, driving us to the route. She would sit near the end of our routes (each of mine and my brothers route were all connected, splitting up the large route three ways) waiting for us to deliver the papers to each house and then drive us back home.
She was quite ok with this since she is a morning person as well. But the most important memory for me I think, was the choice of radio station she would insist on.
“93.5 The Oldies.”  Or “The Moldy Oldies” as she and also the DJ’s would proclaim.
50’s 60’s music mostly…and believe me we’d fight it being on but over time it just settled in. Much like a routine does. You get used to it and even look forward to it. I love this era of music. Song writing at its best.

As I write this and as I save my files (backing up the backups of course!) for her Christmas book, I have The Moldy Oldies on. Each morning I work I make sure this playlist is on in the background. It’s a Spotify playlist with no DJ’s cutting in but it sure puts me in the working mode. Also it is fitting because I often think in my mind she is sitting at the end of this book much like she would on our paper route… waiting patiently. Which brings a smile to me each time I start a new morning.

Still cleaning this up, and will add plenty of Stars. In April’s blog post I showcase this image but with the sky being done traditionally in watercolors. I like this look better.

Thanks for reading! Until next post.
-TRA

*If you’d like to follow my playlist
Search toddtoon on Spotify and heart The Moldy Oldies playlist.

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