Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Moody Monthly Magazine

I had the opportunity of working on a series of children's stories for this magazine a few years ago. The plan at the time was to turn the final process into a children's book. (That did not happen.) There were two authors for the story who took turns sending me a manuscript every month. It was published in the magazine for two years so in all I did 22 full spread illustrations and 22 1/4 page spots for another page. It was really fun to get that manuscript in the mail (before email everything) and plot out my next visual with the recurring characters.
The premise for the story was about a group of children, all friends and neighbors, who went on adventures together. The unique part of the plot was what,where, how, and when they had these adventures. The fathers of these kids were computer geniuses, and had invented a time machine that could send people back to the times of the New Testament days. So, they were able to see and hear Jesus in real life, but the people in that place and time couldn't see them. I suppose the dads had already made time-travel trips of their own to make sure it was safe before they started sending the kids on trips.
The first spread I illustrated shows two of the children discovering the time machine set-up on a ping-pong table down in their own basement. It just looks like a very old computer and some really antique equipment and lots of wires. I made it all up, and those are my dusty basement stairs. The kids who modeled for me are my own and the next-door neighbor's.
I always thought it was a funny name for a magazine. I understand that it was founded on a very famous and honorable person, a Rev. Moody, (but...monthly and moody too?)  My parents subscribed to it when I was growing up so I have long appreciated the quality of the publishing. I understand it is no longer in circulation, like a lot of out-of-print publishing, sigh.