Bob Ostrom Studio
Early in my career I got a call from my rep (at that time) asking me if I had ever heard of the Magic School Bus and if I wanted to illustrate a Magic School Bus book. Having no idea what I was agreeing to of course I said yes. As it turned out the animation series was just about to be released on PBS and things were really heating up for the publisher. They were looking for several artists to help illustrate books that would hit the market to coincide with the release of the PBS television show. It was about to go from a very popular book series to a very popular TV show to an even more popular book series based on the very popular TV show. How do you say no to that?
I studied Bruce’s work and practiced working with his style until I had it down cold, then I created a sample and sent it off to my rep. It was well received and I was in. I received a contract to work on my first Magic School Bus book. It was about Miss Fizzle’s class traveling to outer space. I was pretty unfamiliar with the series at that time but that was all about to change.
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Wake Tech Adobe InDesign Class
Starring with Bob Ostrom
I will be teaching an Adobe InDesign Class at Wake Tech in Cary on the Western campus starting Wednesday 1/28/2015. This class is a beginner level course. It runs Monday and Wednesday evenings from 6:30 until 9:30 PM. Class sign ups have been extended until the day the class begins 1/28/15. I have been teaching this program for a little over 5 years now and it’s definitely one of my favorites. Learning InDesign has been a total game changer for me. I highly recommend this class for anyone who is considering a career in design, layout or publishing. Many of the student I have taught have gone on to very promising careers as a result of having completed this course. A hand full have actually picked up jobs before the course was even finished. The general consensus among the students I stay in touch with is most wish they hadn’t waited so long to take the class.
Wondering if InDesign is right for you?
InDesign – For Layout and design, InDesign is king. This program is sometimes overlooked by artists who use Photoshop or Illustrator because those programs get them by. If you’re tired of just getting by InDesign is a must. This program is hands down the best layout program in the Adobe creative suite and it is the industry standard for layout and design. I highly recommend all artists learn this program so they can have a complete understanding of the design process. InDesign is used by most printers with very few exceptions. If you are thinking about a career in design, layout, print or publishing this program is a must.
Here is a little snippet from the Wake Tech site describing the course:
Adobe InDesign CC is a versatile publishing application that gives you pixel-perfect control over design, layout, and typography. Learn how to create elegant and engaging pages for brochures, posters, magazines, newspapers, and eBooks. Use responsive design tools to easily develop layouts that look great on a variety of page sizes, medium orientations, and digital devices.
So there you have it. If you are interested in signing up you have until Wednesday January 28th.
A Wild Thornberrys Book Illustrated by Bob Ostrom
When I first started doing children’s books I focused mainly on licensed properties. I did work for all the big guys… Disney, Cartoon Network, Nickelodeon and lots of others. It was a pretty sweet gig with the exception of one thing. Illustrators who work in the world of licensed art can tell you that it’s kind of a lonely business. Your work is everywhere but you are rarely recognized for it unless of course you are the creator. Unfortunately even creators are sometimes not given the credit they deserve depending on how the art was developed.
This art was from a Wild Thornberry’s book I did. Most of the books I did for licensed properties were a little stingy with the credits but not Scholastic and the Wild Thornberry’s. The first time I saw the actual printed book was in at Barnes and Noble on display and my name was right on the front cover in big 20 pt type. I wanted to run around the store flinging copies into the air and dancing like a fool but I figured that would just be bad form. So instead I high-fived my son who was about 4 or 5 at the time and did the dad-dance. He thought it was pretty cool too. He used to love it when I got books from properties he knew from TV because they always came with a video that we would watch over and over as I tried to get the poses just right. He would often run around the house quoting lines from whatever series we had just watched. As he got older the fun kind of wore off and the cool factor faded a bit but every now and then we’ll spot one of my books in the book store or at the library and it’s cool all over again.
Q: Hey Bob? Can we still pick up a copy of these books?
A: You better believe it buster buddy. Amazon still has them on their site and lucky for you I just happen to have a couple of affiliate links you can use. If you ever wondered what an affiliate link is here’s how it works. You click on the link and it takes you to Amazon’s site. If you purchase the book Amazon looks at the site you just came from and see’s it’s from me. then Amazon says,”Hey, Bob something really cool just happened. Someone came and bought a book using a link from your website. We think that’s so cool we want to send you a tiny bit of money…. here you go!”
So if you like this book, you like Amazon and you like me (and I know you do) feel free to use these handy links down below.
I could not have had a better, more gratifying experience collaborating with Bob on my first children's book! Working only over the phone, Bob expertly synthesized and translated my vision for the story. We bounced ideas off of each other extremely well. With all of his vast illustrating experience and extraordinary talent, he was still always open to my input and feedback.
The resulting illustrations are beyond well-executed and completely adorable. His images truly make the book. "These pictures are so cute!" is the first thing people say to me when they see it. Also consistently responsive, organized and timely, I would HIGHLY RECOMMEND working with Bob to any children's book author or publisher.