Author Archive

Jack and the Beanstalk

February 26, 2011

I’ve been a bit swamped and haven’t been able to fit in a new fairy tale image.  But this illustration is from “The Truth About Ogres” that I illustrated for Picture Window Books.  Jack and the Beanstalk!!  Happy Fairy Tales to you!!

My Book is on Sale!

January 7, 2011

Hi y’all.  Here’s a book I illustrated that is now for sale on Amazon!  Just thought I’d spread the happy news!

C’est les trois poules français!

December 15, 2010

Le troisième jour de Noël, mon véritable amour m’a donné, trois poules français…
Who said those two years of French in High School and four semesters in College just to obtain my BFA were totally usless?? Joyeux Noël!

The Lump of Coal

December 8, 2010

I have many favorite holiday books and here is one of my favorites.  I ran into this little treasure a few years back.  I am a great fan of Lemony Snicket’s sarcastic dark humor.  This book that is illustrated by Brett Helquist is about none other than a lump of coal.  Great humor, but also a great moral and ending.

Thumbnails and Color Studies

December 3, 2010

Here are a couple of things that are very helpful to me when I am illustrating a book.

First, before I do the actual sketches for the book, I will lay my whole book out in “thumbnail sketch” form. I use a spread template that I made in Illustrator.  I tape each spread up, and it is easy to change individual spreads and tape up new ones.  It’s good to just push quickly through these thumbnails and then you can easily see where you need to improve and draw new ones.

Another helpful thing to do after your sketches are all set and approved is to make black and white studies and/or color studies.  This helps you work out any value problems and color issues before you get the the final.  I have found these have actually helped me save time a lot of times and made my life a lot easier!  I usually can make a color study really quickly in Photoshop.  Don’t be afraid to make these really quick and sloppy, just so you get a good idea a where general colors and values should go.

Spooky Halloween to You!

October 19, 2010

A Spooky Halloween to you from me!

Hagetha’s Tricks and Treats!

October 8, 2010



Hagetha's Bake Shop


I love witches at Halloween time.  Happy Halloween, everyone!!

Hi, I’m Shawna

April 2, 2010

Hi I’m Shawna JC Tenney.  I’m excited to be part of the Doodle Diner!

Your studio is…

In an average sized bedroom in our new house…we purchased it last September. Before that it was in a crammed room in our little condo. I share a studio with my husband Warren a graphic designer. So we have two computers/computer desks, plus my drawing desk, filing cabinets, a big bookshelf and a cd tower. It’s a bit cramped, but still a great place. Warren used to do free-lance graphic design and used to be home all day in the studio with me. Funny enough I love being with my husband, so I miss those days. Now I share my studio with my kids during the days since they are constantly in there. Sometimes I help my kindergartener with her homework or online reading while I draw a few lines here and there. Often my kids like to draw while I draw. They’re both great little artists!

Do you have an agent?

Yes, Janet at Story Book Arts. I love working with an agent. Like all things it has it’s challenges, but overall it’s been a positive experience. She does most all of my job finding and I get to do all of the drawing. This is really nice since I have a family to take care of. She also does all of the contracts and she will communicate with the clients if I need a deadline extension or if the price is too low. I’m really grateful for all she does for me and my illustration career.

What is the first thing you remember drawing?

My doll, Strawberry Shortcake. 🙂

Do you have a favorite memory from an art class?

At BYU, for Halloween, I wore a big gorilla costume to figure drawing class. When my teacher, Robert Barrett called roll, instead of saying “here” I grunted like an ape. He really wasn’t impressed.

Is there a certain person from your childhood that especially encouraged you to pursue your love for art?

My parents could see I had a love of art and encouraged me. My mom read my children’s books every night which really gave me my love of children’s books. My parents and grandparents always told me about my great grandma who was a painter. I used to look at her paintings in awe and try to copy them with crayons. I wish I had the chance to meet her.

Shawna Tenney