Every search and find book needs a 'wimmel family' with children who wander through the stories just as in my wimmelbook, 'Heidelberg wimmelt'. The three siblings of my wimmel family are based on my neighbors' kids, of course.
Some would say, well, then you don't have to invent faces, but it's not that simple. When I invent a figure, I invent hair, nose, mouth, shoes, clothes – I create everything. But if a character is built on a real person, how you draw them works a little differently. The person wants to recognize themself in the pictures.
It is not enough to draw directly from a photo... I did this for 'Heidelberg wimmelt' in a few cases, only as an exception, on special request if someone could not be present during the event drawings.
Although I photographed my neighbor's children for my hidden image book, I spent time with them in their garden, watching them play, experiencing who was the quietest or who was the most spontaneous child. But not only then. I see them every day when they pass my kitchen window or when they come by to visit our bunnies. I get to watch them grow. I see their gestures, their facial expressions, I hear them laughing and I occasionally experience it when they are not in such a good mood. But the bad moods are rare.
When the family moved into the neighborhood, the boy was just a little round baby bump. The parents bought their house with idea of having three children. The youngest came almost as if she were ordered directly from the stork. It is nice to see how wishes come true growing up healthy and happy.
All three (two girls and one boy) are cute and smart. The eldest daughter can handle animals very well. She is calmness in person. Her brother is, as some say, 'a typical boy' who loves to go out on his own and discover things. His little sister is that way, too. I think she has a special sense of humor, she's lively and funny.
The oldest daughter started first grade this past Fall. Her brother will be starting school next year, the little one still has a little time.
If you want to draw wimmel-pictures, you have to be able to observe and have a very large capacity for storing these memories somewhere in your heart and brain. Through the event drawings in Heidelberg and seeing my neighbors almost daily, I was able to transform the essence of real people into figures that are recognizable to themselves and their families and friends. And if you want to develop search and find tales, the stories behind the stories are also very important.
I will complete my Wimmelsearchtip of the Week series in February. Up to then I'll be writing about some background information about the pictures stories and characters. After that, I will be starting a new series and I would be very delighted if you keep reading and sharing my blog with friends and on social media. (Unfortunately, because of the Tele-Media Act, I am not allowed to install share buttons on my website. You can share my blog with 'copy and paste', and would help me out a lot.) In the next series you will learn how to draw search and find images and characters.
If you want to have a wimmel style picture of your children or loved ones drawn, get in touch with me for a quote. Valentine's Day is soon and an illustration is guaranteed to be a nice gift. Just send me a request. By the way, I also draw animal portraits.
See you next week!