This is one of my favorite illustrations from The Apothecary and one of the ideas that came to mind when I first read the manuscript.
But sometimes the most simple ideas are the most difficult to execute. I couldn’t get the sky or the waves “right” and kept painting over and over again, getting nothing but more unhappy.
When I was in almost tearful despair, my cat Buzz jumped on my scanner and sent it clattering to the floor, and so I decided to see if it still worked by scanning my frustrating picture. And then I started tinkering with the image in Photoshop and within a few minutes I finally got the “feeling” I’d been after since that first read. My Photoshop skills are pretty rough, though, so I spent the next few days copying in ink and paint what I’d done on the computer.