Illustration

A Possible Portfolio Piece is Born…

I’m currently teaching an illustration class to kids/teens in the homeschooling community.  For one recent activity, I had a bowl containing papers with words like “cat,” “dog,” “bear,” “child,” “teenager,” etc. written on them.  Another bowl contained characteristics or occupations like “chef,” “super hero,” “cowboy/girl,” “bratty,” etc.  Everyone closed their eyes and pulled a paper out of each bowl – that was the character they were to invent.

I decided to do this activity myself (on my own time).  I pulled out the words “child” and “artist.”

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My little corner of the house…

I love the creative process.  Preliminary sketches – some that work and some that don’t – lead to a shape, gesture, or an expression that catches my eye.  “What can I do with that?”  I wonder.  Then, the ideas start streaming – perhaps this, perhaps that.  The image begins to build itself and the story begins to unfold in unpredictable ways.  I’m just as surprised as any at the result sometimes.

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The painting BEFORE the color pencil detailing…

Next, I might photocopy the sketch to play around with color ideas.  In this case, I used many types of media.  The character is painting the setting around him, so I used loosely-brushed acrylic paint for the background.  The character himself was painted with gouache and then detailed with color pencil.

Then, the staring begins.  I tape it up on the wall so I can look at it frequently as I go about my day.  “Issues” often jump out at me on first glance after I’ve stepped away from it for a while and then walk back into the room.  So, tweaking happens in bits and pieces over a couple of days.  That’s how I roll…

Finally, VOILA!  It’s done.

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“You Are My Sunshine”

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3 thoughts on “A Possible Portfolio Piece is Born…

  1. Pingback: A Lesson in Frustration With (Hopefully) a Happy Ending – Still Not Sure… | Illo-Talk

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