Friend Family Tree Behind-the-Scenes

I thought I'd share some behind the scenes for this new print that's called Friend Family Tree.

This illustration is from a memory from years ago that has stuck with me. My niece and I were in my parent's yard and she was wandering around the grass with her eyes to the ground. She gathered fallen leaves of every shape and size, squiggly mushrooms, rough stones, shiny pebbles, dandelions, teeny tiny daisies, wishies, and spindly sticks. She brought them to the porch and carefully arranged all of these treasures into little clusters and named each little one – Neela, Priya, Mommy, Daddy, Bazi, Bapsi, Grandma, Grandpa, Meenal Masi, Uncle David, Dosa, Auntie Kim, . . . and on and on. A family portrait.

An illustration of a child sitting on the floor of a porch behind a small table. She is arranging tiny mushrooms into clusters. The table is have leaves and rocks and tiny flowers scattered around. She wears a daisy garland like a necklace. There is a book on the floor under the table that reads Family and Friend Tree on the cover. There are potted plants surrounding her and blue bird sitting on the porch rail.

As usual, I started with a messy pencil sketch and then spent a good long time doing a more detailed sketch.

Messy pencil sketch and story notes. The sketch is of a child sitting on the floor from the back. There is a table in front of them and they are arranging leaves, mushrooms, and flowers.

After a lot of back and forth, I ended up flipping the kid to face forward and worked out all the little surrounding details.

Sketch on newsprint of a child sitting on the ground with a small table in front of them. They are arranging the leaves, mushrooms, and flowers on the table.

After that I added layers and layers of color and textures. Below are close up details of the final piece.

Close up of child arranging mushrooms

Close up of book under table

This piece is available as an art print in my shop here!