Sunday, October 9, 2011

My Creative Space Today

I am working on a non-book project at the moment, with what is either the best OR worst brief you can get! It's one of those "do whatever you like" briefs. Initially these are exciting but when you actually sit down to start it's almost overwhelming.

Where DO you start when you can do absolutely anything?! Oh, and the footnote is that it has to be really unique - unlike anything seen out there...including my own usual style of working! Yep - overwhelming!

I find the best thing to do in these situations is to just make a start. I usually get out my favourite books and start to gather a collection of things that inspire me and make me want to pick up a pencil and draw.

A few years ago a developed a bit of cheats technique to create the hand painted look without learning Photoshop. Even though I am more comfortable with Photoshop now, I quite like the final look that this technique results in and it remains vector artwork too.

Basically I break down all the parts of the image into movable pieces and what I think will become individual colours. I then hand paint them in a dark colour. The focus is on creating the feel of brush strokes.

Then I streamline the shapes (live trace) them in Illustrator, so that they become a series of textured shapes - a bit like this.

Then I colour and layer them up into one final image that looks hand painted.

Yeah, I know it's not exactly a totally new and "never been done before", AND I could just hand paint the whole image and scan it, but I enjoy the final result I get from working this way.
Type Summary HereType the rest here


CurlyPops said...

Wow it's absolutely fascinating to see how it all comes together like that!

K said...

I think I'm really missing something, not having Illustrator. That live trace function - I could have used it SO many times. This technique is really interesting and it's given me all kinds of ideas.

You know, Disney used to think of his characters as actors. He'd cast the cartoons out of that pool of actors. And you kind of use a cast of body bits - I think it's VERY clever, myself - and if it's not new in the "industry," it's new to me. I love the way it preserves the brush strokes. I am not deeply at home with the PS brushes - every time I use them I learn a little more, but I don't think they're as much fun as a nice sable brush -