Today I'd like to welcome Illustrator Johanna Mesa. Please tell us a little about yourself.
I am self taught illustrator. I have always loved drawing and painting but only started taking it seriously in my late twenties. I swim in the digital medium, I love how you can create different style with the same tool and retouch to your heart's content (although sometimes that's a curse, since you might get caught in a vortex of retouches and never want to stop).
Johanna, if there was one thing you wished author’s knew about illustrating what would it be?
It is a job just as hard as writing a story. Always remember that story is key, no matter how gorgeous the illustration might be, if the story is lacking, no amount of colors can help it. Nurture your story and use illustration as a trampoline to rocket your book to the moon and beyond.
How do you communicate with the author on a project? Do you like it when the author gives a lot of direction or just lets you have creative license?
More than direction, it's wonderfully helpful when the author knows what they want, right from the start. It cuts down unwanted stress and art revising.
That's good to know. What do you typically charge per illustration?
It's a range that depends on the art style, pages, revisions, distribution (paperback only, paperback and digital...etc). Could be anywhere from 50$ to 300$ or more.
What has been your favorite project to work on so far?
Illustrating my own story, "Arbo makes an unlikely friend". An illustrated children's story about a blossoming friendship amongst adventure. From writing the story , to designing the characters and illustrating the journey, I loved it all.
What is your preferred method to illustrate in? Digital? Pencils? Watercolor?
Digital all the way.
Any last words you'd like to share with us?
If you, the reader, have an idea for a story, don't wait on it, get started today. Even if you don't have a budget, learn to do it on your own and then self-publish via different venues like Amazon KDP, CreateSpace, Ingram...etc. Don't let a dream stay a dream, get up and chase it.
Where can we find out more about you?