SAnta's Gone Surfing
This kid's book, written by P. Crumble, was the very first I've ever had published. It was for Scholastic and I'm super grateful to them for picking me up to work on it. I got to draw silly emus.
Basically, the story goes like so — on one Christmas Eve, as he does each year, Santa crossed the equator to the Southern Hemisphere. But this year, Santa decides it's too hot to deliver presents in Australia. So he grabs a surfboard and heads out to catch some waves.
Can Trev, his trusty old ute and a flock of emus save Christmas? Well, you're going to have to buy the book to find out. Don't be stingy.
I initially drew Santa very traditionally — little bit chubby, nice cosy sweater, warm and kind. But they wanted something a little different. So I drew him as a big-fat-gross-sweaty-hairy-jolly-beach-ball. Basically, a bogan Santa.
The main character of Trev went through quite a few variations. I initially envisioned him as a Jack Skellington like figure — tall and lanky. But we then went with a stouter fellow, one that looks like he enjoys some durries and a slab of beer.
Here are the sketches of some of the spreads, which ended up being a lot rougher than the character concept sketches due to time. You can see a bunch of stuff changed, such as Trev, as well as some details added and removed.
Below are some of my favourite spreads from the book. The title treatment and type layout was done by Scholastic's in-house designers, who did a great job.
I had a blast working on this book and I hope to do more kid's books in the future, especially with Scholastic, they were a joy to work with.
You can buy the book here if you're overseas, but it should still be available in most books shops and that across Australia during the silly season.