Today we have the pleasure of meeting Angie Kwon, the illustrator who created all the wonderful art within the pages of A. B. Harm’s fantasy novel for kids, Bewildered. Be sure to scroll to the end of the special giveaway!
Hi Angie! Thank you for participating in this interview and letting is nose in on your process and experience as the illustrator for Bewildered!
Us: Did you always want to be an artist?
Angie: Pretty much, yes. All I can really remember was constantly drawing as a kid and I had this one obsession of drawing Tweety the bird again and again until I had him perfectly drawn. I think he made me become an odd perfectionist.
Us: Can you tell us a little about the life of a freelance artist? How many jobs do you work at the same time? What is your favorite type of work to do? What’s the best part of the job? The worst?
Angie: I actually just started working as a freelancer and Bewildered was my second job as a freelancer 🙂 Now I work usually two to three jobs at the same time. My favorite part would have to be when I’m finalizing a sketch. The worst part, well I guess when my client is not satisfied with a certain sketch, and if I can’t produce something my client is in need of.
Us: Your work is very unique. Where do you turn for inspiration? Who are some of your favorite artists?
Angie: I have so many favorite artists and usually my top changes from time. But my favorite so far is Jason Freeny. He’s mostly known for his sculptures and vinyl/resin toys he’s just awesome. I don’t really know where my inspiration comes from… I guess everyday life can be inspiring. Haha!
Us: The cover of Bewildered is gorgeous! It really captures the whimsy, the mood, and the vibrant characters of the story. How did you come up with it? Did you have other drafts besides this one?
Angie: I sketched 3 illustrations and finalized a chosen sketch. The story of Bewildered itself has such vibrant characters and so many great descriptions—it helped me a lot to create a cover for this book.
Us: Do you have a favorite illustration from Bewildered? Which was the most fun to draw? Was there one that was especially challenging to get right?
Angie: They were really all fun to draw and complete. I’d have to say the cover was the most fun and challenging illustration. Challenging illustrations are also more fun to illustrate.
Us: Do you have a favorite character? Is there a scene that you especially liked? Tell us a little about your choices.
Angie: I really, really like the Fabrikator. I really don’t know why. I just loved how Fabrikator was described when Prudence first met her, how huge she was with fabrics all around her body with a ring with pins. Even her name is awesome, Fabrikator. Haha! Every character in the story develops or changes into something better, which always makes me want to read more and wonder what will happen next.
Us: Is this the first book you have illustrated? Tell us about your experience. Do you see yourself seeking out more books to illustrate in the future? (Other than the future Bewilderness Tales, that is!)
Angie: This is my first official book illustration and it was so much fun! I think being able to bring a visual image to a story book is always fun to do. I would defiantly seek out more books to illustrate in the future.
Us: What do you think readers will enjoy most about BEWILDERED?
Angie: EVERYTHING. But I have to say all the characters are so great. I can’t specifically just pick a certain part because everything was such a fun ride to be on.
Us: For those readers who want to become an illustrator or freelance artist, do you have any advice?
Angie: Learn as many different types of mediums as you can and never limit yourself. Have confidence in what you do.
Us: Last question, what is your favorite imaginary creature?
ABOUT THE BOOK
Prudence Parks is perfect. At twelve-years old, she has the world in her pocket. No messy friends. No silly games. Everything is just right—until her father leaves her an orphan.
When she tumbles into a bizarre realm known as Bewilderness, nothing is as it should be. Insects talk, pirate ships sail on sand, and plants are just plain evil. After she’s banished for claiming to be human, she thinks the worst is behind her. She’s wrong. The Match King, posing as an ally, promises to send her home if she can find the Paper Heart, an ancient treasure. Battling her sense of logic all the while, she meets a living ragdoll and her father’s doppelganger, who melts her icy heart and—to her regret—gives the Match King perfect collateral to ensure she follows through.
Prudence realizes the Match King’s plan to erase Bewilderness from existence, but now she must choose: save the world she has come to love, or find her way home.
BEWILDERED is a middle grade fantasy novel geared toward children ages 9-12. It’s Alice in Wonderland meets Miracle on 34th Street. Set once upon a time in a land far, far away, this story illustrates the importance of friendship, courage, and proves believing isn’t always seeing.
Purchase it online at your favorite retailer, or visit your local bookstore!
About the Author
A. B. Harms was born a writer. From a young age, she made her own picture books with crayons and a stapler. As a teenager, she won essay contests. Yet, when she began her career, being an author was the last thing she considered. Finally, after working every job imaginable from waitress to social worker and earning her degree in Psychology, she realized what she was always meant to do–write!
A. B. is from Missouri, has gone around the world and back again, and now lives in Louisville, Kentucky with her family, a pet sloth, who resembles a Great Dane, and a black cat, who moonlights as an assassin. No matter where she hangs her hat, she finds herself at home down the rabbit hole.