I’ve been working on a new Easy Readers Series (written by Juliana O’Neill) and I’m having so much fun developing Bandit’s character. If you know me, you know I am a cat-person. When I was a baby my mom’s cat had kittens in my crib and my mom never subscribed to that fear about cats stealing babies air so she let the kittens grow up with me. I’ve always been around cats and loved them. So drawing Bandit has been right up my ally.
If you know cats well you know it’s not all fuzzy bellies and purring. Cats can be a pain in the butt sometimes!
One of the books is about Bandit getting dirty (I am thinking he must have rolled in some oil under a car or something) and getting a bath. Obviously, Bandit does NOT like getting a bath. It’s right up there with being chased by the vacuum cleaner. I think my favorite part about illustrating Bandit is getting the expressions right. What does a cat look like when he’s first exposed to water? They go crazzzzzzy! One eye pops out of their head and they are wound up like a spring about to break loose. I almost used a bad word there but this is a kid’s site so you know what I’m thinking of. Cats can go berserk and it can be hilarious. But in the end Bandit gets dried off and turns back into his lovable self.
Bandit does a lot of funny things. He sleeps in crazy places… he gets sick (if you are a cat-owner you know that aspect all too well) and of course he runs around like a crazy maniac. Bandit is still pretty young and he has a lot of kitten left in him.
Here’s a funny behind-the-scenes story though. When I first started this series I thought Bandit was a dog. So I drew him like a dog. This is not a problem because I know I have some more dog stories coming up and I’ll use those illustrations for those stories. But I did send out a postcard of one of those first illustrations to one of my instagram friends. I LOVE sending mail to my instagram followers. I don’t have that many right now so it’s pretty easy. I sent out about two a week. If you would like to get a hand-illustrated postcard just follow my instagram books account and drop me dm. :). I know that’s a cheesy way to grow your following but I promise I will try to keep it real and NOT too sell-y- sell-y. I love illustrating kids books. I hope I can keep doing this forever!