Illustrator Deborah Allwright – A closer look at her book illustrations

A Patch of Black by Deborah Allwright
In a previous post, I took a look at illustrator Deborah Allwright’s creative process for creating illustrations for children’s picture books. In this post I’ll take a closer look at some of her work for the book A Patch of Black written by Rachel Rooney in 2012.

A Patch of Black by Deborah Allwright

I’m planning on experimenting with some of the interesting techniques (mixed media, collage and printing) that Deborah Allwright spoke about in the video in my previous post. Before I do, I want to take a closer look at some of her illustrations. I’m particularly interested in starting to think outside the box when it comes to adding colour to my artwork.

Drawing aside, there are a million and one ways to construct an image. When it comes to adding colour, texture, depth and interest to my work, I’ve pretty much got a default setting that I go to every time. I really, really want to push myself to start thinking differently about how I create my pieces.

A Patch of Black by Deborah Allwright

What inspires me most about Deborah Allwright’s work is how she uses texture, pattern and decorative elements within her pieces (the image below is a great example of this). She makes use of many different types of media within a single piece, which adds so much variety and visual interest to the image, yet the visual language is seamless.

A Patch of Black by Deborah Allwright

I haven’t really used mixed media within my work before. If I’m painting, I’ll paint the whole piece in one kind of paint (acrylic, watercolour etc). If I’m drawing, it’s either pencil or pen, that’s about it.

The nearest I come to using mixed media is scanning my traditional drawings and paintings into the computer and working on them digitally – which I really enjoy. I never really experiment with combining different kinds of traditional media, though.

Over the next few days, I’m going to experiment with lots of different ways of adding colour to my drawings – taking into account all of the things I’ve learnt from looking at Deborah Allwright’s work.

A Patch of Black by Deborah Allwright

 The images used in this post are my own photographs of the book A Patch of Black (2012) written by Rachel Rooney and illustrated by Deborah Allwright.