Chester Discovers a Genie

Contrary to popular belief, the iconic golden lamp is not the only place to find a genie. Some genies, like Paige, prefer the cylindrical interior of a small scuba tank.

While I continue to work on my character redesign sheets for the rest of the Ballooning cast (see Chester, Jasper, and Paige), I thought it would be fun to do a mock interior illustration for Ballooning. I envision Ballooning being filled with fun illustrations, including full-page spreads and spots above chapter headings. After all, the subject matter lends itself well to illustration, so why not take advantage of it?

Chester’s bedroom is as fun to write as it is to draw. His room is lit by twinkle lights fed into colorful glass bottles, and his chair, or “throne” as he likes to call it, is fashioned out of welded street signs. He dispenses clean socks from a restored vending machine and sleeps in a gutted 1950’s-style refrigerator. He’s only shut the lid on himself once.

Although I initially did this illustration in black and white, as it would likely appear in a printed book, I think I’d also like to take it into color. I’ll post it as soon as it’s finished.



  1. Nice Erin! I like it a lot! Fun ideas for his bedroom. The attention you’ve given to the specifics of the room are great, and I love Paige up in the lights. Is his room abnormally tall? That’s cool if it is. If it’s supposed to be a room with typical dimensions with awesome stuff inside it, I think it could use a little tweaking. Maybe if the sock dispenser and the standing lamp were stretched up a little more it would help to fill all the empty wall near the top. It also seems like a budding inventor would have more stuff chaotically everywhere. Pinned to the wall, taped to the dispenser, stuffed under the fridge-bed. One other big thing that would really bump up this illustration for me is if Paige were more framed with contrasting values. She’s pretty light on dark in her swirly genie part, and I think that could continue up behind her as well. I know the lights are up at the ceiling, but I think you have some credible leeway to group all those upper wall values darker. Right now I tend to look at the walls as much as Paige, and I REALLY want to look at Paige. You did such an awesome job on her! The other cool stuff is down at the floor with the illuminating sock dispenser anyway. One last tiny thing, Chester’s hood seems to be two toned. Just spread some of that light over to describe it’s form where it meets the other side of the hood and it’s there. Awesome work, again!


    • Hi Shara! Thanks for the critique. I was also thinking that I could have pushed the room a little further and filled it with more quirky things. I like your idea about having posters/papers taped to the walls. I kept thinking that the walls were a little too bare, and I love the idea of having more stuff on them! Thanks so much for your help. I’d like to keep pushing this illustration until I’m completely happy with it.


  2. I love the quirkiness of the characters! I’d never have thought of dispensing socks from a vending machine! The detail in your sketch is amazing, even in black and white. This is going to be an awesome book! 🙂


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