I may have found my Granny model. There are certain requirements to make a proper German grandmother. She has to have a face as sweet as Apfelstrudel (that’s German for apple strudel), and yet, be a typical square-headed German. This is an illustration model sheet, meaning it will be used as a guide for later illustrations. But I intend to take it a step further and do a colored-pencil version on top of this pen and ink base.
You may have noticed the little person in the picture. He’s a little too small and too oddly dressed to be an ordinary child. In fact, he is General Tuffaney Swift, a Storybook fairy who got his immortality from the stories of Tom Thumb. He is a gifted warrior and is one of the primary defenders of the fairy kingdom of Tellosia which is hidden in plain sight in the midst of my little Iowa hometown. He’s a character that I have been developing since I was in high school. There is evidence of this claim in this old colored pencil drawing from the 1970’s;
You see, the story of Recipes for Gingerbread Children involves the fairies of Tellosia and a sweet old German lady who likes to bake sweets and cookies and tell fairy stories. And it is a novel project that is swiftly absorbing my whole life. It’s funny, but that’s pretty much what happened with Snow Babies and Magical Miss Morgan. My best writing seems to come from brain bursts of inspiration that force me to put aside scheduled projects and spend all my efforts, even my blog posts, furthering the story. Soon I will be all in. I just need the right picture of a cute German grandmother.