My friend Conni (Carlsen Verlag)

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So here’s some biiiig news we’ve been wanting to share for months now, and it’s finally official: Marc and I are illustrating the new picture books of “Meine Freundin Conni” (“My friend Conni”) by the German publisher Carlsen, which will come out this year in September!

In case you don’t live in Germany or you simply don’t have children within the age range to know Conni, here’s why this is such great news: Conni is one of the most famous German children’s book characters around at the time, created by Liane Schneider and Eva Wenzel-Bürger. The first book featuring her came out 25 years ago and since then it has expanded into a massive universe with picture books for very small children, to children’s books, to novels for teens. Children can follow Conni on her everyday adventures and basically grow up with her. Apart from the books, there’s also a musical (with a second one debuting this year), a TV show and two movies. As you can see, it’s quite a big deal among children.

What we’re doing is the picture books for children from ages (approximately) 3 to 6 years old. Up until now, those books were still mostly done by Eva Wenzel-Bürger, but the publishers decided that it was time for a fresh makeover.

These are the titles that will be coming out in September: “Conni kommt in den Kindergarten” (“Conni goes to kindergarten”), “Conni ist wütend” (“Conni is angry”), “Conni geht zum Zahnarzt” (“Conni goes to the dentist”) and “Conni geht aufs Töpfchen” (“Conni goes potty”).
Two of them are new versions of beloved, already existing books (“Kindergarten” and “Dentist”), the other two are completely new stories by the original author, Liane Schneider.

So anyway, we’re really super excited! It’s so much fun to draw this character and her world, so we hope we’ll be able to make much more of them! And of course, we hope the readers like the new style.

As I said, Marc and I work on this together – even though the title only has my name on it (but Marc’s will be featured in the books’ imprint). While I decide the layout of the pages and draw the characters, Marc draws the backgrounds and gives tham that quirky, slightly organic feel. Then the pages go back to me for coloring.

We’ll surely show you more once the books come out, but for now, here’s what you get to see in the publisher’s new product catalogue (you can download the complete catalogue from the publisher’s website: https://www.carlsen.de/presse/vorschauen):

25 years of Conni!
There will be posters! And tattoos!
Here's the preview for 'Conni is angry'.
There will also be a friendship book to accompany 'Conni goes to kindergarten'.
'Conni goes to the dentist' and 'Conni goes potty'.
And because it was so small before, here's a closeup of the sample page from 'Conni is angry'.

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Posted in Illustration, News

Princess Coralie Book 1 (Klein Toys)

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We promised 2 months back that we’d show you more of the Princess Coralie stuff that we worked on, but we’ve been very very busy lately. So long overdue, but here’s a peek into the first of the 4 storybooks:

Princess Coralie 1 Cover
Princess Coralie 1, page 6
Princess Coralie 1, page 9
Princess Coralie 1, page 10

Published by Theo Klein GmbH, 2016.
Story by Christine Sommer-Guist. Drawings by Marc Rueda, colors (watercolor) by Janina Görrissen.
ISBN 978-3-945519-51-6

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Princess Coralie (Klein Toys)

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Sooo… Here’s something that has been in the making since 2014, but we couldn’t show you anything yet!
Marc and I have been working together with the German toy manufacturer Klein Toys to create / expand a new line of toys that finally came out around Christmas last year.

The main part of the work is done by Marc here, I mostly take care of the watercolors. So he designed the characters and illustrated 4 little storybooks. Based on these characters and some of the elements in the books, Klein Toys made quite a few toys – plushies, figures, a toy castle and more.

Around November, we received a BIG package with aaaall of the toys. It was like early Christmas and so exciting to see all the finished products!

For now we’ll just leave you with a few pictures, but we’re going to show you some of the products more up close in the upcoming weeks. :)

These are the 4 picture books that got it all started, in a way.
Look at all that stuff lined up on our sofa!
Here's a closer look.
And here's another one.
This one we received a little later, which is why it's on a separate picture.

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Klara & Po

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For some months now, Marc has been working on little single-panel comics for a butcher’s shop called Baur. He puts these in his promotional flyers and apparently, some people are avid collectors by now!

The ideas and texts are provided by the client (© Frank Baur) and Marc has a lot of fun doing these!
The texts are in Swabian, one of Germany’s many dialects, so I roughly translated the dialogues the best that I could.
And yes, some of them are pretty harsh and not apt for vegetarians! Don’t say I didn’t warn you.

Po: Oh Klara, why do you have such biiiig red eyes?  Klara: Don't interrupt me, I'm trying to poop!
Klara: Hey Po, I'm leaving for a wellness weekend to pamper myself!  Po: You don't need to do that, we have everything right here! Mud packs, hot stones and massage brushes.
Klara: Oh God, where have you been in your holidays? Didn't you get anything to eat?  Po: I did the St. James pilgrimage and totally forgot to eat with all that self-discovery!
Klara: Why do you look like that, and what kind of place is this?  Po: Thisss is my ssssecret brewerrry!
Klara: Hey Po, did you know you can win a Christmas order at Baur's?  Po: Of course, that's why I made two orders right away!
Klara: Hey Po, are you coming ice skating?  Po: Nah, I'd just break my neck!  Klara: Aw, come on! It will be fine, and if anything happens, the butchers at Baur's will be happy about that!

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Princess Mina Junior Rummy (Haba)

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Princess Mina just keeps coming! Here’s another game in the series, this time it’s a card game for 2-4 players aged 5 – 99.

There were 2 new princesses to design this time, so now we’re up to 6. I love playing with different types and ethnicities and I try to make each princess very unique. Did you know there don’t seem to be any (none!) mainstream princesses with glasses? So I felt that I really needed to include one here.

The cover.

Here's what's inside.

You can collect the different colors for each princess...

...or you can line them all up with the same background.

Closeup for the first 3 princess cards...

...and the second 3, including the 2 new princesses.

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