These Boots Are Made for Walking… and Fighting Fires — Put Out the Fires!

These Boots Are Made for Walking… and Fighting Fires

My good friend, Andy Hogan, referred me to Mike Perez earlier this year. I met Mike by phone on February 18th and he agreed to send me a concept sketch.

I didn't give him much to go off: “So there’s this gangly guy named Clyde. Awkward, brown hair of medium length, tall and skinny. He uses a bucket to put out fires in medieval towns. He is dressed in Renaissance getup. You know, one of those v-neck shirts with the lace through it?”

When he sent me the first concept piece (see below) the next day, I knew he was the person that would give visual life to the story that meant so much to me!

Clyde was digitally born on February 19th at 3:36 pm.

Height: 219 pixels. Weight: 298 kilobytes.

Mike had captured the essence of Clyde.  (Sounds like a cologne: "Essence of Clyde." One day it will be.)  His depiction showed the bumbling desperateness, the loping gangly-ness, and the unproven courage of Clyde's personality.

The ONLY revisions I requested were bigger thighs and boots instead of wimpy slip-ons.​  After a few tweaks, we settled on a rugged, though impractical, option: adventure boots!

Clyde started out sporting wimpy slip-ons and scrawny thighs.

Clyde did some squats and put on some work boots.

Ahh... adventure boots!  Just right!

The final concept illustration for Put Out the Fires!

At one point Mike made the comment that he didn't know how anyone could go on an adventure in knee-high boots.​

I completely agree, but you have to look cool before you can become a hero.

About the Author Mark McKenna

Mark is the creator of Put Out the Fires. As a dad, husband, instructional designer, and business owner, he enjoys crafting stories and systems that enhance learning and life.

  • Patti says:

    I’m in love with Clyde already! Where’s the book? or at least the story? I’m dying to hear the story. I LOVE the art; but even more, I love your writing style, your humor, your aliveness. Your books are going to be a huge hit. I’m so glad I get to watch it all emerge!

    • Mark McKenna says:

      Thank you, Patti! I am excited to share the story with everyone. I just have to figure out how to do that. (A preview of the first 8 pages like a Kindle preview, sneak peeks of the entire book as the illustrations are completed, or the full text minus illustrations, etc.) If anyone has suggestions, please share.

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