Wacom Cintiq 16 – Pushing My Traditional Watercolor Illustrations to Another Level

Boy with Curls
Jacki Kellum Traditional Watercolor Sketch
Painted in 2018

I have always liked the wispy, fresh and almost tentative look of watercolor, but I originally trained as an oil painter. In fact, I trained as an abstract expressionist. When I began writing picture books, I switched to watercolor. At that time, traditional watercolor was the preferred medium for book illustration, and I worked hard to learn how to paint in that medium. But the picture book market has changed. Before I began submitting my manuscripts for publication, the digital illustration had overtaken the industry of picture book illustration, and I have jumped into the endeavor of learning how to create digital art.

Henry – Jacki Kellum Picture Book Illustration
Character Study
Created September 2020

I drew Henry on my iPad Pro, and I used the app Procreate to do that. A month after I began learning how to draw with Procreate, I began creating my illustrations for my newest picture book manuscript: Pete’s Circus. 

The Strong Man – Jacki Kellum Picture Book Illustration
Character Study
Created September 2020

I am almost surprised to say that I like my newest illustrations–all of which were drawn in Procreate, and even though I am getting better at using Procreate on my iPad Pro, I always double-check my drawings on my computer, where I use my new Cintiq 16.

I cannot praise the Wacom Cintiq 16 enough,  and I may eventually switch entirely to that platform for my digital art. But for now, I like my pattern of doing the initial drawings in Procreate and final editing them with my Cintiq 16. Ultimately, I plan to go back to my traditional watercolor painting and to paint the images that I created digitally.