The authors, Sarafino Enadio and Terry Whitebeach, the book designer Julie Hawkins, and I are putting finishing touches to the text, layout and illustrations. I've made print mockups of the book and everyone's feeling excited, not to mention impatient. Here are the front cover and some of our favourite spreads. Seeing the pictures and text come together has been hugely satisfying.
It's a vibrant text, so I tried to use strong rich colours and tonal contrasts. Several scenes took place around sunrise and sunset, which was a great opportunity to paint silhouettes. I've loved silhouette art ever since, as a child, I went to some showgrounds in the Big Smoke and saw a chap who'd rapidly cut out a vignette of your profile from black paper. I thought that was one great career! Later I discovered the 'golden age' illustrators who illustrated in silhouette - Arthur Rackham, W. Heath Robinson and the like - and contemporary illustrator Jan Pienkowski, whose gorgeous 'Kingdom Under the Sea' (by Joan Aiken) I have kept since childhood for its silhouette paintings on marbled paper backdrops.
The book will be published by The Tasmanian Writers' Centre, or an imprint of the TWC, as soon as we can finalise the details and funding.