So I did tons of sketching over the summer and had an epiphany to incorporate the sketches into something of my own. I usually sketch from good magazine and book photos - I'm always on the hunt for great photos where kids are in action, and from my own photo library. Next, I pick a sketch and brainstorm how to add to the fun.
For example, I liked a sketch I had of a girl laying in the sand. I started drawing her with modifications (hair, dress, etc) in addition to some stylistic choices. I think the original photo had the girl smiling at the camera, but I chose to have her look at something and replaced her smile with a somewhat surprised face. I then asked what she might be looking at. I decided on a shore bird who looked just as surprised. The next step was to add props for depth, and to make the scene more alive and recognizable (umbrella, town, lotion, ball, the sun). Last of all, I brought it into Painter to add textures, patterns, and paint even though, yes, it is just black and white.