I’ve started working on my “Roof Cats” series for Hamaca Press, and since this project is something way different than I’ve ever done before, I’m taking my time. I’m used to tight deadlines.
This time, I have all the time I need. Living up to that luxury is a little challenging.
The books will follow an extended family of feral cats who live above human society in Mexico. I got the idea after observing these tough, independent and very proud wiry little felines on a trip to Yucatán. Most of the houses are attached and have flat roofs. Unlike the stray dogs who really seem to struggle, the cats are a tough breed. Story lines of their imaginary society immediately struck me.
Before I get into character design, I want to design their environment. It will be the rooftops of a colonial city in Latin America, inspired by our travels the last few years. I’m starting out by using Photoshop filters to reduce cityscapes to basic color blocks. The results were quick and startling.
I’m planning to lean on intense color blocking, rather than outline, for the characters. My foundation is cartooning, so again, this is a new challenge. All I know is I want intense color, reflecting the visual feast that Yucatán conveys.