I’m guest blogging on the David Fickling Books site this week.
As my contribution concerns the Pendle witches, I have an excuse to reveal
this very early rough for the Spook’s Apprentice series, made before I
decided to go for the silhouette/woodcut kind of style that illustrates the
series. This is the charming Mother Malkin, with her favourite snack – live



Boggarts and Beasties

Here is a small selection of chapter heading illustrations from Spook’s
Blood, the ninth (I think) in the Wardstone Chronicles.
There’s also a small ‘behind the scenes’ piece which shows how the pictures
are developed. First I draw the scene in pencil, scan it in, maybe move a
few things about, then slap a piece of paper over the monitor and trace out
a line drawing. With Photoshop’s paint bucket tool, I quickly dump in the
blacks and make any necessary refinements digitally. In the case of these
miffed witches, I made a complete mess of the one in the background and had
to redraw her, then patch her in to the final image. Finally, I run the
whole thing through a dust and scratches filter, which smoothes everything
out and produces a more natural feel.