Chuck Galey

Author • Illustrator • Teaching Artist • Speaker

Click here to return to the Blog Home Page



It’s August 1st and that can only mean 45 more days of heat.  In Mississippi, it doesn’t get cool until around the middle of September.  However, the A/C seems to be working just fine and I’m working in the studio during the day, staying cool.  Summer in the South!


The inaugural Mississippi Book Festival is coming up on August 22nd!  Those scheduled to be there are literary giants such as John Grisham, Greg Isles, Julia Reed and Ellen Gilchrest!  It’s gonna be great!


I’ve been working all month so far on overhauling my website in preparation of the launch of Sketchbook Doodles, my e-newsletter that I’m putting out every couple of months or so to get my work out there in the general internet rounds. 

I’ve also been working on Highlights For Children Hidden Picture submissions this month as well.  So, I’ve been pretty much locked down behind the drawing table, working.  And that’s a good thing.

With this heat, I’ve been running early in the morning.  This time of year, it’s still 75˚ at 5am, so I haven’t been running too fast.  This 61 year old body is reacting in different ways to running these days, so I’m being very careful so that I’m not too tired at the end of the day.  So far, so good.



Each day, I try to work a little while on a new sample piece of art.  This month, I’m working on a water color of a scene from my imagination.  While driving down the Natchez Trace National Parkway, I often see hay bales in the fields surrounding the Trace.  I always wondered what would it look like if an alien space craft that had the same shape of those hay bales had landed and the little aliens were out studying those bales with their scientific instruments.

So, I started developing those images.  I call it Dusk On The Natchez Trace.  Here’s what I’ve got so far-

Character studies are always fun!
Here is the value study rough.
Here is the color rough.

It’s fun to invent an image from my imagination and kind of make it look like a fine art piece or something similar.


Today was the first Mississippi Book Festival and it was a HUGE success!  The weather was great although a little warm.  They had planned for around 1000 participants, however around 3,500 showed up.  The food trucks ran out of food, there were standing room only crowds.  Many rooms were filled to capacity and not everyone got in to see who they wanted to.

I joined fellow picture book author/illustrators Lori Nichols and Susan Eaddy at the 2015 Mississippi Book Festival.
Can you find me in this crowd shot with John Grisham at the podium?
Next year's event will be August 20, 2016. Save the date, y'all! They've already worked out the logistic problems for next year!