Illustrations by Nancy C. Sampson

Posts from the ‘Paris’ category

Here’s another finished illustration from my Plus France, Sil Vous Plait: Ways to be More French book idea.

Accordion-playing street musicians are definitely part of the fabric of Paris. I’ve heard their music playing at least once on each of my glorious trips to the City of Light. And any cliched or even sincere movie set in Paris just does not feel complete without accordion music played by a street musician wafting through a scene, or even for the entire soundtrack. (ex: Amelié; Midnight in Paris; Paris, Je T’aime; Charade … I could go on all night … please comment if you can recommend more!)

In honor of this fact, which I should find out the history of, I decided that if I was to hire a musician to play for me on my way to the market, while I’m eating dinner, or doing mundane tasks, it could bring me back to my fun times in France and it would add a Frenchie feeling to my Americane life. I’ve depicted this concept with Adele and Henrí in their kitchen and the accordion player that Adele has hired. Unfortunately Henrí doesn’t seem to be enjoying it so well since the accordion isn’t a very cat-friendly instrument.

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Here’s an image from a booklet about Adele and Henrí that I intend on self-publishing in print and tablet forms. I’ll share more details once I am closer to being finished. If you scroll down you’ll see the first finished illustration and a sketch for another that I will begin soon.

Are you on Twitter? Adele is now twittering, as is my pigeon friend, Percival Featherington III. You can find them under these Twitter handles: @Adele_18th and @Percival_F3

This tip is travel related: “Attach a decorated basket to your bicycle.”
Henrí’s though bubble will be “This one is nicely sized!”

Adele’s tip for adding French style to your wardrobe: “Accessorize with scarves!”
Henrí’s reaction: “Mmmmf! Mmmf!”

Au revoir, thanks for checking in!

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Above is a sketch I did as a tribute to the famous Brassai photo of the Montmatre steps from the early 1930s.
http://www.amazon.com/Escaliers-Montmartre-Paris-Poster-Brassa%C3%AF/dp/B0000WJIPQ

It is going to be a very small part of the Adele book I’m working on, and I wanted to include it since I have been an admirer of his work for a long time. I haven’t worked on the page that it appears on yet, so you’ll be seeing it again in its smaller form, as part of Adele’s blog. The story is partly told in the present tense along with important excerpts from Adele’s blog/journal.

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In this post I have to be honest, I am not good at drawing hands. Since my college figure drawing classes, rendering that body part has always given me the most trouble. In my sketches, they end up looking like “Attack of The Claw,” sausages, (as one of my Illustration professors put it), or worse! So please bear that in mind when you look at the next page of Adele’s story. The “hand” that appears here is definitely better than how they usually come out, but I think Adele’s hands should look more elegant, so I’ll be working on that some more.

Also, I have been uploading the pages out of order, this is page 2, page 1 was posted on May 25.

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Over the years I have been working on-and-off with an idea for a graphic novel featuring my character, Adele, from an illustration I created in 2001 inspired by my first trip to Paris, France that March. Since I lack knowledge and experience with sequential art and comics, I have also lacked confidence in how to move forward on this, and have had doubts about even trying at all. I haven’t shared the story or sketches with many people… it never seems to be “ready” for others to see! I am always sketching and re-sketching the panels and pages.

Recently I traveled to Paris for a third time and 10 years (ouch!) have passed since Adele first came to life on the pages of my sketch book, I’ve decided that I owe it to her and to myself to push forward to see what can happen with this story. Plus, I can’t seem to completely drop the idea, that has got to mean something.

Although it feels a bit scary, I’ve decided to start posting sketches and finished pages on this blog. I hope it will make the project seem more tangible, plus many of you might have comments that could help or encourage me. So please click “follow” on my blog page, add me to your RSS feeds, or catch the posts on Facebook since my blog updates automatically to The Nancydraws Shop page.

I may not be posting the pages in sequential order as this experiment goes along, but here’s page 1!

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For me, the freelance-office-gig to working-creatively-at-home transition is always a little tough. I certainly look forward to my less structured days but laundry, gym time, and internal battery-recharging is always in the mix. I’m blogging today as a way to bridge the gap this time.

I am looking forward to my trip to Europe which is coming up in April. It has been quite some time since I’ve been out of the country now and it would be putting it lightly to say that I am looking forward to it! I’ll be visiting friends in Barcelona and then meeting up with a gang of single ladies for sight-seeing and celebration in Paris. As luck would have it, my parents will also be in Paris one of the days that I’m there, so I’ll get to see them, too.

With this trip, I am finding that more than any other I have been on, the anticipation and planning are almost as good as actually being on the trip! This is mainly because of the large number of blogs and apps that have come into existence since the last time I traveled. I have downloaded tourist guide apps from TimeOut for both Barcelona and Paris, so I can browse activities and facts on my phone wherever I happen to be.

I have also been browsing through blogs and travel websites for each city… here are a few of my favorites:

Paris:
http://dailyphotoparis.blogspot.com/ (Each day, a beautiful shot of the City of Light)
http://badaude.typepad.com/my_weblog/ (A U.K. ex-pat illustrator’s take on Paris life and art)
http://bbonthebrink.blogspot.com/ (More excellent photography)
http://parisbymouth.com (Daily restaurant and food-related blog)
http://www.girlsguidetoparis.com/ (A great all-around travel blog)

Barcelona:
http://www.barcelonaphotoblog.com/ (Daily photos from around the city)
http://travel.nytimes.com/2009/04/26/travel/26hour.html (36-Hours in Barcelona)

Yes, the list for Paris is longer, but keep in mind, there are 5 other women involved in that trip and we’ve been sending one another Paris web links for the past few weeks. I also did a search on Google Earth for the address of our hotel in Montmatre… really fun!

So I hope this trip brings plenty of new energy and inspiration; traveling internationally always does the trick for me.

Au revior and hasta le vista!

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