Beverly Tuck Talks About Illustrating Little Bianca
Pilinut Press: How did you get started in art?
Beverly: I've been drawing since before I could read but never actually took a course in art until high school. I went on to major in art in college.
Pilinut Press: What interested you in illustrating a book?
Beverly: Mack and Celia Webb were talking about all the books they were working on and mentioned being a bit behind in the illustrations. I thought it might be fun to illustrate a children's book, so I volunteered to help.
Pilinut Press: How did you approach illustrating “Little Bianca”?
Beverly: When I read, I "see" the story being described. I merely had to draw what I was seeing. Plus Mack had a lot of suggestions for the drawings, too. I thought it should have some bright colors since it's for young children and about an artist and his talented daughter. I decided to draw freehand rather than using drawing software.
Pilinut Press: How did you come up with the concept of the illustrations you did for the story?
Beverly: The name "Bianca" sounded Italian, so I made Bianca a little Italian- looking girl. And her Papa is an Italian artist in smock and beret. I thought the story suggested what they were feeling and thinking was more important than the background, so I thought I would minimize distractions.
Pilinut Press: Once you had the concept, what did you do next?
Beverly: I played with a couple of drawings for Bianca and Papa and Drachmas and Nonaught. Then I set the scene for them, drawing a few of Papa's run-of-the-mill art and trying to get a sense of Papa's gallery. I kept the background to a minimum as planned but hoped to show that it was not upscale.
Pilinut Press: What did you enjoy most about the process?
Beverly: Creating the characters and giving them the expressions that represented the story was the most fun.
Pilinut Press: Did you find illustrating for a book different from the other artistic projects you have done? If so, how?
Beverly: This was the first project I had done for publication. The printing requirements were rather exacting, much more difficult than I had imagined it would be.
Pilinut Press: If you were asked by another artist interested in doing book illustrations for advice, what would you tell him?
Beverly: Have fun! It's definitely a worthwhile learning experience but don't lose the joy of creating in the process. Would I do it again? Sure! I hope to very soon.