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“[Brooke’s] fabric collage illustrations are unique and beautiful.”

brooke draws
brooke draws

I start my illustrations with free-hand pencil drawings. I am not a formally trained artist. In fact, I hardly even doodled until I began illustrating Look Who Lives in the Desert!. I just draw... erase... re-draw... erase... and re-draw again, until the image I have in my head finally comes out onto the paper. It’s a challenging and time-consuming job but...

coyote sketch
organ sketch

it’s very rewarding!

coyote and organ sketch

Next I scan the drawings into my computer. Then, instead of coloring my drawings with paint, pastels or pencils, I use fabrics and real-life textures. For Look Who Lives in the Desert! I photographed over 200 elements and used them to color the artwork.

Do you see the yellow fabric in this illustration?

coyote page

And here’s an example from Look Who Lives in the Ocean!
I used the same artistic process for my marine animals.
Octavius Mollusk, Ph.D. wears plaid. Silly, huh?

octopus page

Blue with dots, red with swirls, teal, pink and green. I hope you have fun looking at all the fabrics that color the pages of my habitat books (and this website).

“Brooke Bessesen has done a wonderful job with her book, Look Who Lives in the Desert!. Her art style is unique and wonderful, and I eagerly anticipate her next work.”
— Cody Myers-Miller, Children's Events Coordinator, Bound to be Read bookstore