Friday, 26 April 2013

Cha Bar

Uni is getting dangerously close to the end! With so much work to get finished I was glad to finally complete this live project brief from Cha Bar - Knutsford for their brand new logo! Purveyors of fine, healthy teas and homemade designer cakes.

It was a nice breath of fresh air from my usual type of work, forcing me to delve into personally atypical creative recesses.

I am rather pleased with the end result and it will go towards filling out my work based learning module beautifully.

Thanks for stopping by,

Monday, 22 April 2013

Drawing before snoring.

Just a sketch before catching some Zzz's. Thought it would be nice for you to see the before and after process of a coloured digital sketch.

She doesn't look too happy huh?


Saturday, 20 April 2013

Happy Mistakes

Striving for that traditional feel in a digital medium. For this experiment I tried to keep it as 'rough' and 'textured' as I could as well as creating custom brushes for the bristle strokes. Used Art rage to create some nice '3D' brush work to make it seem as though the paint is really layered on top of the canvas.

Pity He's Too Oblivious To See, 'Pretty' He's Too Blind To See.



Thursday, 18 April 2013

Business Cards Ordered!

 Finally sent off for my business cards today, really excited to get them back! All two hundred and fifty of them that is! Here are the final designs for the front and back of my new shiny business cards.

Let me know what you think,


Monday, 15 April 2013

3 Weeks

Until final hand in!

In an attempt to organize myself I have put together a little check list of the work I need to complete in due time.


  • Storyboards, script, proposal & treatment for my animated short
  • 'Cha Bar' Logo design (live brief)
  • 'Transition' album cover designs (live brief)
  • 500 word document on work experience & skills gained during this module
  • Progress file containing research and findings on competitions/festivals, job opportunities, local and international companies, creative skill set, time management & team work
  • Continue to flesh out this blog up until hand in
  • A3 Portfolio & Show reel
  • Print Business cards
  • Creative CV
  • Final Animated Short
By the end of this first week I should hopefully have the whole of Work Based Learning boxed off! I will also be sending off for my business cards to be printed by tonight.

Friday, 12 April 2013

Something Clicked

Around 3 in the morning last night something actually clicked!

I've been slaving away at this digital painting relentlessly, practicing, watching tutorials, practicing, watching tutorials, practicing, you get the idea...

But I have definitely had a 'eureka' moment, here are my personal findings

  1. Have faith and paint over the lines
  2. Make sure the sketch is fine in line weight and accommodated for a painting, not for a piece that will feature line work in the final illustration. I've found that if this isn't the case when you come to paint over the lines and eliminate them if they are too messy or too thick your proportions will be completely out.
  3. KEEP IT SIMPLE! Don't over render and make a clear simple statement with regards to the forms and shadows, especially cast shadows.
  4. Think about the strokes you are making and why they have a reason to the final statement.
  5. Blues, purples, greens, yellows and red hints within the skin tone in the right places and with regards to the lighting really bring your flesh tones to life.
  7. Colours are only registered with regards to the other surrounding colours.
  8. Encourage 'happy' accidents i.e. Don't be too precious with your painting, if you try to keep it perfect it looks plastic and fake. Keep some texture and brush strokes in there.
  9. Render only whats important to the final statement and leave other things less refined.
Well here is my latest portrait practice. No reference was used, I wanted to recognize what I was doing and why I was doing it. Why I chose to make certain hues cooler or warmer, positioning of cast and core shadows etc. I wanted it to register rather than just copying a photo which I have done enough of in the past.

Thanks once again for paying a visit!


Thursday, 11 April 2013

Digital Painting Process

It's been no secret that I've been wanting to improve my digital painting skills for some time now. I feel that my drawing is substantial enough to at least get some work as a professional animator & illustrator. But painting has always been daunting to me. Without the safety of the line I feel lost. I've always had this terrible habit of expecting my work to look perfect from beginning to end which of course, is discouraging and also the wrong way to look at it, especially with someone as impatient as me, it has been fatal to the completion of my past painting attempts. But I now know that you have to gradually mould and sculpt your painting from the general and rough, to the specific and refined.

Anyways here is a print I'm working on which WILL be successful! I'm going to push through!

I've seen Brave twice now, the second time I watched it was on Sky player in order to break down the story after reading 'Invisible Ink' by Brian McDonald. After having read that book, deciphering the tools and mechanisms of the story became unbelievably easy and almost too obvious. I saw all the workings and mechanics of the film, the setups, the dramatisation, the symbols, the underlying armature and how everything served an important part in leading up to the final climax and inherent message therein.

Subsequently I became inspired to draw 'Merida' the lead character. Here is the initial sketch which I began to colour in Photoshop.

As I began fleshing out the face I decided to take the plunge and paint this properly. Here is my current progress...

I can't even begin to tell you how annoying and difficult getting this far has been! That's the reason I'm here to be honest, to relieve some stress! Ha! Alas you can see that I have begun sculpting the form as well as adding a little rim lighting just so I know where I'm going. (really out of panic because I painted over the line work...) It's hard picking the right colours when painting. Knowing where to put the blues and greens in the skin tones, dealing with light, how that effects the hues of the shadows and cast shadows, something I find especially tricky to get right.

Well wish me luck! 


Wednesday, 10 April 2013

The Art of Journey Book

Man I so wish I had a PS3 just for this game! I've wanted to play it for so long, it looks spectacularly gorgeous.

I recently came across this video promoting the release of the 'Art of' book which I MUST obtain! The art work is to die for, but not only that I think seeing the process that TGC went through designing the game would be incredibly useful for my own means.

A valuable lesson learnt from watching this video is that design is a 'subtractive' process. In other words it's what you leave out thats the key, not what you put in. It must all be concentrated and full of flavour, just like when a chef makes a sauce, they want that intense flavour by reducing the water content. Word.


Monday, 8 April 2013

AH! Adam Hughes

This is my second post on Adam Hughes.

Adam is such a huge inspiration to me and major art hero. It was really his art work that got me into taking this profession seriously. I have recently realised that what you keep in your mind will eventually take effect on your character. Well, I have ART on my mind! Over the years I have watched videos of Hughes drawing, taking interviews and have bought much of his work.

He has shown me the work ethic and amount of hours you have to put in to your craft if you really want to 'master' it. One of the most poignant statements he made was that everybody had tens of thousands of bad drawings in their hands. In order to get to the good ones you've gotta 'write' out all of those tens of thousands of bad ones.

Here are some short videos of him sketching at comic conventions. Pay close attention to the freedom and fluidity in his pencil strokes. You catch on to the fact that although these drawings only take a couple of minutes in the video, they have actually taken decades to produce...

I guess this post is very much about realisation, realising the work ethic needed in this profession, the dedication and passion, but in more technical terms; 'Good drawing is good design, and vice versa.'

Here you can see that Adam isn't necessarily drawing true to life forms, he's nuancing them to 'read' graphically, he's drawing 'symbols,' symbols he's taken years to acquire, symbols he's drawn tens of thousands of times.

Well I hope you enjoyed these videos.

Thanks for stopping by,


Wednesday, 3 April 2013

Keeping you abreast of my latest work...

This just happened. It actually started as someones head believe it or not. It turns out however, heads are quite complicated to paint.

It looks like the most pointless painting ever and it's honestly not part of anything larger either...

BUT I did actually learn something from this, it is in fact my first EVER digital line-less painting.

*sigh* such a shame.

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