Wednesday, May 28, 2008


Did you know writers and illustrators capture movement in a story?
Sure, the approaches maybe different but both achieve the same end result.
The approaches for children's illustrators and children's writers indicated are based on my involvement with Workshops and Critique Groups.

These tips will be passed along to you each week.

Vision the movement of the story-line as you read a manuscript:

1. Search for key words which describe a realistic character such as; young, old, strong, weak, shy or outgoing. Searching for key descriptions will determine the size, shape, facial features, of the character and their movement through the story.
2. Search for key words which describe an animated character such as; legs, arms, wings, transparent, magical and additional body parts.
3. Read the problem and resolution, note key descriptive words of the problem and resolution. Your job is to fill in any gaps left behind with your own unique creative images to maintain the interest of the story-line.
4. Control movement of the story by the chain of events; capture changes of the characters expressions, mood setting, and surrounding environment.
5. All movement should have a smooth transition and be understood.

Development of movement in a story-line:
1. Show don't tell the story.
2. Strong key words to describe a realistic character or animated character.
3. Explain the problem of the story and the resolution.
4. Smooth transition of when events take place in the story; follow calendar seasons in order, or breakfast, lunch and dinner, and day or night. Always follow a story-line of events.
5. Show the environment surrounding the story-line of events. Whether the story starts outside (describe the weather, location, and activity taking place), then it's lunch-time (describe the smells, tastes, appearance of the kitchen) and finally it's nap-time (describe how the character falls asleep; singing, counting, or watching objects in the room.

Hopefully, you've captured the importance of movement in a story-line. Even though, the methods utilized by an illustrator and a writer may differ. They're still able to achieve the same outcome.

Please be sure to visit next week for additional tips.

1 comment:

nita said...

Hi Dawn,
thanks for the tips :-)
I'm a writer of children stories too, and I like your illustrations.
Good job :-)

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