Don’t forget the day job

children's books, illustration, Ken Wilson-Max, kids, publishing

It just occurred to me that I can show pieces from books I have worked on…

The first book  to show is ‘Red Light, Green Light’, written by Anastasia Suen and published by Harcourt a few years ago.

A fun rhyming text and easy to illustrate, I tried to experiment with different coloured outlines as well as trying to capture views of traffic and landscape that children wouldn’t normally see, or they might see on TV. Up to that point It was difficult for me to change my style of painting which had become very recognisable. The difficulty was in persuading publishers to allow me to change.
I believe this book was only published in the US. One of the first ideas for an image in this book is the one below. I’ve never been in a helicopter but the bird’s eye view of  a city seems to be one of the most used in cinema and television and we all take it for granted.  I’m sure this secondary experience will be easily surpassed by the real thing. One day…

Finally, something to smile about

fashion, idea, illustration, iPhone illustrations, London

After months of practising something is, at last, beginning to happen. The iPhone paintings are beginning to turn into a style. It’s very exciting! This portrait evolved right before my eyes, the result of having seen a couple of wonderful art exhibitions, as well as reading the newspapers more than usual, flicking through picture books and being immersed in the task at hand.

Early morning on the Northern Line

illustration, iPhone illustrations, Ken Wilson-Max, London

Its surprising how full the Underground can be at 6:00 am! Some days there aren’t any seats available. Every Thursday I get up at 5:00 am to make a meeting that starts at 6:45 am. Some weeks I go by bicycle but lately I’ve been using public transport as it allows me to make paintings. This person was half awake. He didn’t move a muscle the whole time I was on the train.

The last January snow… or did I speak too soon?


The last of the January snow.

Pitfield St, Hackney, London,England was all covered in snow and ice a couple of days after the snow stopped falling. While it wasn’t the worst or heaviest snowfall in the world, it was an unusual couple of weeks, weather-wise, for most people in the United Kingdom.

Out and about on public transport; Finsbury Park Station

illustration, Ken Wilson-Max

picture of Finsbury Park Station

It was a typical Sunday. Slow and quiet, at least in my direction. I suppose it was quite different for all the shoppers chasing bargains at the sales all over London.
I had time to observe and a few people and things caught my eye.  And then at the end of the light part of the day I looked back at the station exit and decided to try to capture it. In the cold weather it wasn’t all that pleasant, but an itch is an itch…