Color for Jack and the Giant Barbecue

Jack and the Giant Barbecue is Eric Kimmel’s retelling of Jack and the Beanstalk, set in west Texas. I wanted my images to tell the reader where he is, so the costumes and settings were carefully researched.

Color is a powerful tool for telling a story. To make every page look like the American West, I turned to 2 classic painters for guidance: Charles Russell and Frederic Remington. I made small color studies of their paintings before I began developing a palette for Jack and the Giant Barbecue. Notice how both artists accentuate the heat of a prairie scene with warm colors—yellows & oranges—and make the shadows more vivid with cool colors—blues & purples.

The color script came next. You can see Russell’s and Remington’s influence in the color, particularly in the outdoor scenes. I carried blues and purples inside the Giant’s barbecue shack to make it dark and unsettling.

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  1. […] shown here individually, but they were created together on one big piece of watercolor paper as a color script. Each study is roughly 6″ x […]

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