One of the things an illustrator needs to be nowadays is versatile. I have a “lighter” style of illustration but also hold on to a traditional approach. While it’s great to create whimsical illustration it also pays, literally, to be able to draw somewhat realistically. Throughout my career I’ve been fortunate to illustrate stories about great people including Harriet Tubman. For the book “The Story of Harriet Tubman: Conductor of The Underground Railroad” (Dell Yearling) I learned many interesting facts about her life and also did a lot of research for the places and settings for the story. I encourage illustrators to explore historic subjects for their own portfolios. Here are some of my favorite illustrations from the book.
In this drawing (b/w pencil on paper), Harriet leads a family through the woods at night on their way to freedom.