I thought I'd share one little illo, from sketch to finished painting.
For this one, I started doodling a pig in an old-fashioned bathtub. I did a quick pencil sketch: I tend to sketch really small, so when I'm happy with the drawing I have to enlarge it either on a photocopier or using my scanner. Once I get it to the right size, I transfer it to watercolor paper using a small lightbox.
I can still make a few changes while transferring the sketch: in this case I changed the paper boat to a little rubber duck. On the sketch paper, I'll sometimes play with color, just to get some ideas.
Once I have the sketch on the watercolor paper, I use pen and ink to do the outline. I love ink drawings, the looser the line, the better. I prefer using a nib so that I can play with the width of the line, but I'm still learning how to control it. Also, even though I like the line to be loose, like on the sketch, once I start doing the outline in ink I have a harder time keeping it just as fresh. I like the results, but it's certainly more controlled. Once that's done, I erase the pencil marks and start painting. Selecting the colors and painting is also something I'm still working on. I guess my favorite part of any illustration is the sketch: everything else takes a bit more work and effort, and I find myself being more tentative. But the greatest thing is that I can see myself improving little by little. Having a blog and being part of Watercolor Wednesday has helped a lot! :-)