My Illustrations for a New How-to Book

There’s a room in most houses that is the lint filter of your family’s extraneous possessions. The end-of-the-line room, the place that stuff accumulates inside until you finally have to haul stuff outside, to the garage or to the garbage. If only that room could be cleaned as easily as a lint filter – but where do you even start?

I have such a room in my house and now that I’ve illustrated professional home organizer Christen Fackler’s new book How to Organize Everything, I no longer have an excuse. Her book enumerates clearly and succinctly just how she has successfully shaken down hundreds of clients’ messy spaces and come up with cool streamlined systems for keeping the really important stuff organized.

I’ll show a few of the drawings I did for the book, but to get her great organizing advice – and her insights on how it applies to getting your life in gear as well – you’ve got to read the book, available as an ebook here and soon to be in print.

I started with some very rough pencil sketches that illustrate tips for steps in her process –

Moving on to tighter drawings like this –

I drew some rough color sketches using colored pencils, keying the colors to those on Christen’s business card.

And finally I created the finished color artwork, which I drew on illustration board with prisma pencil, then painted with acrylic washes.

It was a pleasure working with Christen, and now I know how to tackle that room so I better hop to it!

Again, if you need advice on sorting out the junk, get the How to Organize Everything ebook (I designed the cover too) and sign up for Christen’s newsletter here as well.

Illustrated ads, Part 2: revision and research

marketingadsroughI had indicated to my client on the hot air balloon sketch that I intended to make the small group of people to the side of the large crowd vaguely resemble her and her team – shaking hands or high-fiving.  Because these figures would be quite small, the resemblances would be general – hair length and color and relative heights.  She requested that her team be in front & center of the crowd instead of off to the side; this would at least make it easier to get a resemblance since they could be a little bigger.

Next came some deeper photo research into hot air balloons and magnificent, colorful skies. I had a picture in y mind of kind of a fish-eye view of the clouds where they would bend to circle around the balloon, and get deeper in hue as they moved farther from the horizon.


And revisions to the drawing of my client’s team – from little individual sketches to a nicely composed group.


The next step would be roughing out the color. I had to get through this quickly because now the job had become a rush.  I’ll show final steps next week.