Sunday, July 15, 2012

Blue Bird of Friendliness - Illustration

I've always loved drawing; but only recently have I seen that my love for drawing and the skills I've acquired over years of doodling are unique, special and can be used for good in this world.
I've discovered the more I draw the better I get, I can see myself improve at a much quicker rate than almost any other task. Ergo, the return on investment for my time and effort in art is really high - so that's where I should be investing my time.

This weekend I got to thinking about birds and I've been really attracted to the Art Nouveu style of Alphonse Mucha, with the dreaming whimsical maidens and elaborate backgrounds. So I sat down and sketched out a lady with a bird on her finger. I didn't come close to Mucha's dreamy, soft illustrations... but it's my own style.
I sketched this out in pencil, then inked it and scanned it into the computer. I cleaned it up in Photoshop so I could get a really clean live-trace in Illustrator. Then I colored it in illustrator. It's simple - and that's ok. It only took me one episode of Downton Abbey. I entitled it Blue Bird of Friendliness, after a They Might Be Giants lyric (which I obviously like because I entitled a previous post about felting the same thing). If you are on Dribbble, check out the "shot" there and maybe give it a little like.

Things I want to work on
  • Weight: My characters often look like they are floating. I think this is because I do a lot of my work from memory instead of finding reference material. Also, in this image I didn't do any shading. I might add that later.
  • Poses: Once again, I don't usually work from reference. My friend Casey Robin has a line of bug-girls that I'm completely enamored with. I asked her how she got her figures to look so --- alive! She said she gathers reference pictures for how she want them to look, the clothes, the pose the facial expression; then sleeps on it. I need to start doing that.
  • Details: My overall patience needs work. Being able to produce something ok in an hour is a fine skill and comes in handy working at a start-up. But I want to have the dedication to put in the time and create something exceptional.
It's great to be in a position where there's room to grow, but you can see progress. Thanks for coming along on my journey!

1 comment:

Kate said...

Love the art and the insight. You are amazing! Can wait to see what you draw next :)


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