Every digital artist can tell a story, even if it’s not through words. As a digital artist looking to expand your skills, you might be looking into story crafting. If you have a story to tell, do it through your favorite art form. And if you have kids, you can raise them to be bookworms by reading them a story you created! Here is a guide on how to make pop-up children’s books.
Learn About Pop-Up Book Art First
Pop-up book art is a fun DIY activity that anyone can do on their tablets or by hand. Before you buy drawing apps or run to the craft store for supplies, start by learning about pop-up books first—there’s a wider variety than you’d think.
The most common type is turn-up books, where the pages expanded out to expose more of a drawing—these were the rage in the 1700s. Only the coolest kids at theatres got one for a shilling. The other common type you’ll find is transformations; these books have large, 3D-esque images that open vertically in slats—the most common pictures are carriages and circus acts.
Other pop-up art books include:
Decide if You Want To Make a Story
There are pop-up books that tell stories and show images of fun things like animals, bugs, occupations, and vehicles. Not every picture book needs a story, but if you’re aiming to write one, find a writer friend to create the dialogue to go along with each image you create.
While some books display origami shapes, animals, and even mythological beings, your book could encompass that with a story. Say you want to write a story about mermaids; you’d follow the same guidelines as any other storyteller:
- Craft the plot—ensure it’s age-appropriate before writing.
- Create your characters and make them your own.
- Design your images and start piecing things together.
- Then, edit your pictures as you go and include the text.
Draw Out Your Designs
Drawing is the next phase—or you can do this first to help draw inspiration for a story. Regardless of where you start in the process, ensure that you add the right elements to your designs before sending them to print.
If there are elements you want to add but don’t know how they’ll look, consider using a 3D printer. You can make your 3D models look more realistic by paying attention to your topology and adding texture before printing out the designs. These things can make each image come to life as it flips up when you turn the page.
As you learn how to create a pop-up children’s book, consider visiting with friends and family who have children and using them as beta readers. They can provide feedback on the illustrations and storyline so that you can make the book even better than the first copy.