The Last Viking Returns

Designing Viking World – the entrance gate

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TLV2---2-weeks-to-go

There’s only a fortnight until the release of The Last Viking Returns  on Sept 1st! This is my last behind-the-scenes post before then.

I’ve been focusing on one of the main settings in the book – a theme park called Viking World. There’s a moment early in the book where the family arrives at the park for the first time, and I wanted Josh to have a sense of awe. The text only says “Wow”, so I was free to fill in the rest.

My first sketch looked like this. Not terribly impressive, not awe-inspiring at all, but it helped me to figure out what goes where.

 

pg6-scans

What I wanted was that sense of excitement and majesty that happened in the film Jurassic Park, when the characters go through the park gates for the first time. You might remember the scene:

It uses a worm’s-eye perspective (also sometimes called an ant’s-eye perspective). It’s a good viewpoint for emphasising how big something is compared to something else. It’s great for making your reader feel small and for creating a sense of awe.

JURASSIC-PARK-gates

worm’s-eye perspective

So I changed the perspective in my sketches.

 

3rd-dummy-pg6-7-V2

could be better

 

p7-gestural-rough-scan

that’s more like it

 

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final pencils and shading

 

pg6-7-final

final colour version

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Author: James Foley

James makes books for courageous kids. He’s the author/illustrator of the S.Tinker Inc graphic novel series for middle primary: Brobot (2016) and Dungzilla (2017) star Sally Tinker, the world’s foremost inventor under the age of twelve, and Joe Tinker, her stinky baby brother. The third in the series, Gastronauts, will be published in late 2018. James’ earlier books My Dead Bunny (2015) In The Lion (2012), The Last Viking (2011) and The Last Viking Returns (2014) have all scored several honours, including children’s choice awards, shortlistings in the Children’s Book Council of Australia Book of the Year awards, and selection to the International Youth Library’s White Raven list. James comes from a long line of queuing enthusiasts. Follow him on FB/twitter/insta @jamesfoleybooks, or at www.jamesfoley.com.au .

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