Wednesday, September 12, 2012

The Brave Little Tailor: Illustration Process

When I started this years big personal project, I knew it was going to be a lot of work...and boy was I right. As I'm nearing completion though, I'm really pleased with how it's all coming out. It's been really rewarding on so many levels. The friend's I've made, collaborating with writers, not to mention I have a large new body of work rolling out for the winter shows. One of the things I really like about doing these special yearly projects though, is seeing how the work changes from year to year, thinking about how the family has grown, and all the new things we do and are capable of doing. I'm really lucky to be able to do the things we do, and am so happy to share it with you all.

Today, I have a large set of images to share for the first complete calendar image. Showcasing the climactic scene of "The Brave Little Tailor", the idea is that the kids and us are acting out each of the stories in a theater setting. As I've been designing these, I feel like our love of the muppets and puppetry are really showing, and I'm reminded of one of the reasons I began drawing in the first place. In high school, I wanted to be a puppeteer and work in the Henson Creature shop. At any rate, This is my basic process for creating an image. I hope you enjoy it!

I started off with the thumbnails at the right of the page (the full size version is at the top of the post), and then rough in the major forms. I'm working at about 9x12 on bristol board.
Next, I pencil in the details of the characters, and firm up some of my ideas for the background.
Then, I ink the main characters and scan them into the computer. Without the background.
I put the background together in illustrator, right on top of the original pencil drawing. I also paint in a base color for the characters to help isolate them and unify their color schemes.
Here I put the final calendar layout over everything to make sure it all fits. I add a texture to the page, as well as paper textures to the background elements. I lay down color on all the foreground elements quickly to give everything a base to start from.
 The Characters are painted.
 Here I added some details to the background like the stage floor, shadows cast by the set, and the theater spotlight.
 And last I went in and added some detail to the set pieces, finished up the floor and added some sheep to fill in some dead spaces.

Thanks for stopping in. I hope this all made some kind of sense. I enjoy posting about process, so I hope you all enjoy reading about it. Ha-ha-ha!  If you have any questions or comments, I'd love to hear from you. 
Until next time, take care and be good!
Your friend,

1 comment:

  1. Haven't been by in ages. Sorry. Work. You know how it goes....

    This post is brilliant. Love seeing how you work each stage, Makes me want to experiment a little.

    And like how you popped in the sheep at the very end. Aftersheep !