Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Q&A - Deborah Cuneo


Self Portrait - Digital Sketch
www.deborahcuneoillustration.com

Hi, I'm Deborah...illustrator, art teacher, Mom, fabric hoarder quilter, lover of marmalade and curator of several, rather large collections of Oaxacan wood sculptures, nutcrackers and sock monkeys (just to name just a few!).


Any Good News? / What are you working on? 

I'm very excited to announce that I recently signed with Sky Pony Press for my first book as both author and illustrator and I'm looking forward to Spring 2017, when Little Dragon makes his debut! Aside from Little Dragon, I'm working on a couple of new picture books and a graphic novel.

 
Little Dragon - Digitally Colored Character Sketch

 

What is your Medium? 

Medium has really been an evolutionary process for me. While I started out in kid-lit with pastel pencils, I've created with everything from markers to watercolors, colored pencils and acrylic. Most recently, I've moved on to digital and "whatever". I really like the freedom that painting with a digital tool provides, but I feel I always need to keep my hand in some sort of traditional medium as well. I do love experimenting and playing with all sorts of combinations so, stay tuned!!

Beagles - Acrylic/Colored Pencil
Down the Shore - Acrylic/Colored Pencil/ Digital


What attracted you to the field of kidlit? 

I had an aunt that supplied me with what turned into an incredible library of great picture books! I was never much of a tv watcher so, when I wasn't making art or playing sports, I spent hours looking at these books and loosing myself in the stories the illustrations told. I decided back then, that I wanted to be creating picture books at some point in my life! 

Who are your creative influences? 

For writing, I would have to say my grandfather, a former teacher, who was always writing and telling his own children's stories. Illustratively, when I was younger, I loved Rockwell, Sendak, Little Golden Books, Dr Seuss and of course, Disney! As an adult, I came to discover and appreciate the amazing work of David Wiesner, Chris Van Allsburg, Sophie Blackall, Shaun Tan, Chris Sheban, Renata Liwska, Helen Ward and Brian Wildsmith, just to name a few (ha, ha). And with each new illustrator I discover, I always take away something that I learn and love from their beautiful artwork and then I have to add them to my ever-growing list! 

Down the Rabbit Hole - Acrylic/Colored Pencil/Digital

Your Picture book process: Do the words come first or the images or both?

Definitely the pictures. When I get an idea, it's like a movie that suddenly starts playing in my head! 

GN Sketch - Pencil

 

What inspires you?

Everything does...For me, life is one big inspirational, shiny button moment after the next! 


17 comments:

  1. Great intro blog! Can't wait to see Little Dragon evolve into a picture book! So exciting!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Pat!! Was working on the final sketches today. Can't wait to get to color!

      Delete
  2. Huge Congratz! Little Dragon is coming out very huggable.

    ReplyDelete
  3. I know better: fabric hoarder should NOT have been crossed out! Congrats on your upcoming book! Can't wait to see it. We will actually have to buy it for our grandson.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Becky!! (funny, you caught that about the fabric,lol)

      Delete
  4. I know better: fabric hoarder should NOT have been crossed out! Congrats on your upcoming book! Can't wait to see it. We will actually have to buy it for our grandson.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Always a fan of your work. Miss our trips to New Jersey for the conference! XOXO

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Lynne Marie. Funny you should mention...I was just looking at the group photo the other day. I looked like a drowned rat while you all looked like you just stepped out of a photo shoot for coastal magazine. Fun times.....:o)

      Delete
    2. I cannot wait until your book debuts from Sky Pony Press and hope you will want to be featured on my blog. www.literallylynnemarie.blogspot.com as I love to promote talented authors and illustrators there!

      Delete
    3. That is so sweet of you to extend that offer to me! Thank you and of course... I would be honored!

      Delete
  6. So excited for Little Dragon! I recognize that marshmallow illustration from the NJ SCBWI Down the Shore show–in which you won a prize! Your work is so expressive and beautiful. I'm happy you continue to grow as an artist–you are inspiration for us all.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Barbara, backatcha, for sure. You really are the inspiration and have been such an amazing support as well! There is so much positive energy in our group and I love how we celebrate each other's milestones and it spurs us on in our own careers as well. This is one perpetual cycle that I hope never ends!! Love you all!

      Delete
  7. Congrats Deborah! Loved the illo of the rabbit hole. :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Kristine and you're no slouch either. CBIG is one talented group!

      Delete