The Promise of Surprise

Thangs I like. + My Vis Comm II blog for now.

Okay here she is. The Final Portfolio my friendz. 

Alright. 

First piece:

Product Illustration

SOMEONE TELL ME IT LOOKS LIKE A FACE ONE MORE TIME! Jk. But really. It does look like the bag it’s representing. Anyway. I used gouache for this piece, which I think worked out pretty well. I think gouache always works well for things with a lot of different highlights and shadows - whereas I have a harder time achieving the same effect with watercolor, it always looks a little more flat to me. 

I worked on this for a really long time, trying to get everything just right. I think I may have overworked it a little, and may have added a few too many highlights in (with white colored pencil) but, I think for the most part it was successful. I tried to capture the texture in it and really get the color down to make it look like leather. I don’t think there’s much else left to say about this piece. 

Second Piece:

Number 3 Illustration

Okay, so this one is definitely one of my favorites, I think it’s because it’s a subject matter I enjoy and I think it definitely is one of the better watercolor pieces I ended up doing. 

I did this piece pretty quickly, sketched something loose out and then went to town with the watercolors. I think this is the illustration where I really started to trust where the watercolors were going and not messing with them so much - I just gave it a looser feel. I’d put a wash down and then step away from it for awhile and come back to it. I was working on two illustrations at once so I had time in between. And then the addition of the line art was also more expressionistic? And a lot more loose like the illustration was. So I think those two things going hand and hand helped it. And it definitely is more my style…not as tight as a lot of other illustrations. I think I just enjoyed doing this one so it didn’t turn out like shit……. :) yay!

Third piece: 

World Record Illustration

Alright this was another one where I enjoyed the subject matter. Alcohol. Large cup of alcohol. Like. Yes. Anyway. For this one I went with a digital illustration but I ended up bringing some copyright free images into photoshop and then manipulating the. Then I used the art history brush to kind of get this impressionistic look to it. Using the art history brush is super easy to do - just had to read a quick tutorial on it. And yeah - it did kind of feel like cheating, BUT….Rusty told me to! Haha, jk I won’t blame it on Rusty. But! This was definitely a way to accomplish getting an image quickly….and we’re taught a lot (where I work, in VCII, etc) that we need to balance quality and meet deadlines. Like sorry but I don’t have the time to work on illustration 24/7…..I got other classes, 3 jobs, and am involved with things. It’s life. SO. I think doing this definitely helped me understand how to kind of get around something quickly - that’s a good skill to have in my opinion. So yeah. Anyway, did that pretty quick. Just added in some black lines to give the city some more structure to it. 

Fourth Piece:

Native American History Month Poster

Okay so this one was fun. I started off trying to be conceptual with this deal…and then it didn’t work out. So I started over. And I tried to use some directional lines, a lot of them, to make it look a little more 3 dimensional. I think it worked out, I was really happy with how the headdress turned out. And I know it was definitely a cliche way to go, but I wanted a cool ass illustration - slash we needed to visually communicate that we were talking about Native American History Month…and I think that’s hard to do without a key element relating back to Native American Culture. 

And it was definitely fun to design something for it. I obviously like working with type and such, so it was nice to add some flair to the whole thing - and I was glad we had the 2 color restriction. Less to think about! So I really thought this one ended up being successful in both aspects. 

Fifth Piece

Society of Illustrators

Okay so this one is a little bit more simple, but I like it that way. I wanted to do something a little bit more minimal, sometimes less is more. I think my concept was something I wanted to show through with this one. 

Anyway, I love old antiquey anatomical drawings/prints. So I wanted to kind of explore that a little bit more. It’s weird looking at a print and trying to translate that into an illustration but I think it worked. I used a lot of stipling and smaller strokes to get there. Overall this was fun to work on. It was nice to see certain parts come out as I went on. I almost overworked the body and then stopped right at the right time I think. The hourglass is still a little “wonky”. Looking at it now at this point I think that could be redone, but hey. Too late now. I just put a simple wash behind it to resemble the media illustrators use. And then went with the grungy type. 

This was again pretty fun to work on, definitely something I was interested in and invested time in. 

OVERALL THOUGHTS:

Okay. Soooo. Illustration in general. I started off SUCKING haha like it was so bad….I would come to class with these blobs and be horrified comparing them to the rest of the class. I don’t know when things finally clicked, I think it was when we started 
gouache I got a little bit more confident. But yeah, as this second half of the semester went on I started doing the thing where I see a deadline and I make it. I think it’s because I’m just so used to doing that at this point that I just started going to town and got something done pretty quick. Which was fine. But at the same time I think I stopped caring as much? Idk. Typical me. I’m not a crazy perfectionist at all….I just did something semi decent and moved on. Towards the end of the semester I feel like I wasn’t making anything super cool by any means. I wasn’t staying up at all odd hours of the night to get things done. 

It may also be because I’m not the best illustrator, and it’s not something that interests me as much as other art forms I guess? I definitely love photography, and I am passionate about that so I let myself spend more time and care on that project during the semester rather than working on illustration. Which is probably a bad thing. But hey, we have so little time while we’re in school to get a solid set of skills together. Sometimes you just have to focus on the ones you are 1. better at, 2. more interested in. I feel like I can’t be great at everything at all times. SO. Because of that I kind of just bullshitted my way through this class. And I think it’s okay to say that. 

Rusty has to know that haha. I would make shit in like 3 hours and just print it without showing him or wanting to improve. It was so obvious. 

But! You know what. I still learned a lot in this class. Comparing my first landscapes to this I’m like dang….that’s a lot better than I thought I would ever do. So hey, here’s to that at least. I learned how to use 
gouache, I however, still have not learned how to spell it right off the bat (I have the word on a sticky note on my computer, so when I go to blog I just copy and paste it haha)

Anyway. Yes. So. This feels long. My fingers are cold. I probably also spelled loose, lose during this post. I always do. So! Hey. That’s all for now folksssss

Classical Music CoverSo I did Giussupe Verdi, he’s an italian composer from the early 1800s. I took this album because it had this song called Libiam ne’liete calici, which is called the drinking song. It’s basically about enjoying life and drinking wine in Venice, which is where he composed a lot of his songs. So I just took a typical scene and did a digital illustration with this, and then did some simple silhouetted lines of people drinking wine. I just wanted to do something with a romantic feel to do it, and that’s where the soft colors and softness of the digital painting comes in. I just used Bodoni and then ….shoot don’t remember the name of the script font off the top of my head. But yeah! Just tried to give to capture the feeling of the album and the song, which I think I did. The lines were supposed to be pretty wispy, so I tried to really get those lines down and drawn quickly on the first try, I didn’t want to over think it. I think they look fine. The wine glasses still look a little odd? But I’ve been working on them, the more I work with them the worse they get? So. Yeah. This is fine! Nothing too great, nothing too beauteous. But hey.
It ain’t goin in my portfolio. I probably shouldn’t think that way…….but ha I am. So whatever. This is donzo. Just going to get it printed along with the book cover. Woop!

Classical Music Cover

So I did Giussupe Verdi, he’s an italian composer from the early 1800s. I took this album because it had this song called Libiam ne’liete calici, which is called the drinking song. 

It’s basically about enjoying life and drinking wine in Venice, which is where he composed a lot of his songs. 

So I just took a typical scene and did a digital illustration with this, and then did some simple silhouetted lines of people drinking wine. 

I just wanted to do something with a romantic feel to do it, and that’s where the soft colors and softness of the digital painting comes in. I just used Bodoni and then ….shoot don’t remember the name of the script font off the top of my head. But yeah! Just tried to give to capture the feeling of the album and the song, which I think I did. 

The lines were supposed to be pretty wispy, so I tried to really get those lines down and drawn quickly on the first try, I didn’t want to over think it. I think they look fine. The wine glasses still look a little odd? But I’ve been working on them, the more I work with them the worse they get? So. Yeah. This is fine! Nothing too great, nothing too beauteous. But hey.


It ain’t goin in my portfolio. I probably shouldn’t think that way…….but ha I am. So whatever. This is donzo. Just going to get it printed along with the book cover. Woop!

Book Cover Illustration - Catcher in the Rye

Hokay. So I switched my idea to Catcher in the Rye. Much easier to think of a concept for this one. 

I love this book, I actually re-read it at home over break in a day over Thanksgiving. It’s an easy read, so it was no biggie. And I really wanted to take things out of it that weren’t cliche….like using his hunting hat, or the baseball glove, that kind of stuff didn’t really interest me. 

So the concept just came from the fact that he’s kind of going around exploring trying to find things to do all night in NY, so that’s where the taxi came in. Then this blood falling man thing is imagery that came to mind while reading again - he’s always getting himself in trouble in various situations, sometimes getting beat up, sometimes not - but I thought that the blood and the falling would work. He just falls into these situations where he gets himself in trouble, so yepppp. 

Idk, pretty basic design, but I thought it was more interesting than using the typical elements that are used on the covers. 

Then I just wanted it to have this concrete, gritty feel. I mean it’s set in NYC most of the time, he’s constantly smoking cigarettes, driving around, walking around, so that’s where the concrete texture came in. 

So yeah! I like it overall. I should probably upload the original illustration - it didn’t take me too long to do. Maybe 2 hours? And then the designing took a few. 

I’ve been pretty much under budget on most things I’m working on. Howevaaaa, I just think I’ve gained a lot of experience now with just pumping good designs out pretty quickly, and no this isn’t some extravagant illustration that I took 10 hours working on, but I still think it’s visually appealing, I think it turned out how I visualized, and I did it quickly. Which is a lot of the times, what I’ve been told to do. 

Yeah! Overall I’m happy with it. Woot.

So. Guys. If you spend a week and a half trying to brainstorm a non cliche illustration for a book cover, you probably shouldn’t keep trying. 

I’ve actually been trying to figure out what to do for Don Quixote for like a week and a half now. That is stupid. Why I have been doing that I have no idea. 

Anyway. I’ve realized, now that I’ve been on break, and had like 8 hours on a hot sweaty annoying megabus to think about my life, that I have just been creatively stumped for awhile now. 

I think it’s so hard to find inspiration during school. Like okay. We’re all in a lot of classes, I know I have plenty of extra circulars I’m in involved with, I work, I try to squeeze in a social life here and there - like okay where is there time to get any inspiration. 

I can’t remember the last time I had the chance to sit down and read a book, or just chill out and watch some weird ass movie, or do the typical things I try to do when I’m trying to get inspired. 

I think that’s why I sat on that Don Quixote idea for so long. I just expected creativity to come, and you know what, when you’re having to be creative like 24/7 sometimes you just have to move on from an idea. It ain’t gonna happen. 

So. Anyway. This probably doesn’t make sense, because HA guess what it’s break and I’m still up doing homework and I”m sleep deprived. WOO. I hate school. But. Moral of the story - I’m moving on. To Catcher and the Rye. Cause. I like that book. And I have more ideas. 

More to come. 

SIDENOTE

I’m pissed this classical music thing has to be before the 1900s. Like c’mon!! I had so many ideas for a recent classical artist. SO MANY. 

And then Kristen reminded me of the specs and my soul was crushed. 

COOL - EVEN WHEN I AM CREATIVE EVERYTHING IS RUINED. 

I just want to collapse and sleep on the floor with my pug Hank forever and never go back to school. 

THE END

I’M DOING DON QUIXOTE FOR THIS BOOK COVER. 

Weirdest book/story of my life. I love weird things. This must be good. 

Anyway. That’s as far as I’ve gotten on illustration this weekend. Literally being attacked by life in all other directions so. YEAHHHHH

So this is my Society of Illustrators poster. Just my line illustrations, a simple wash down. And then some text. Nothing too crazy. But really fun to work on and a good representation of my style and what I like. It’s nice to have some freedom to make things we like here and there. And yeahhh every time I upload a jpeg it’s all pixely and weird. But yeah! Maybe I’ll talk more about this later but I kind of already did in my poster earlier today. So yeah the end. Also I’m angry this is 16x20……like k glad I have money to print something that huge off. But whateh-r.

So this is my Society of Illustrators poster. 

Just my line illustrations, a simple wash down. And then some text. 

Nothing too crazy. But really fun to work on and a good representation of my style and what I like. 

It’s nice to have some freedom to make things we like here and there. 

And yeahhh every time I upload a jpeg it’s all pixely and weird. But yeah! 

Maybe I’ll talk more about this later but I kind of already did in my poster earlier today. So yeah the end. 

Also I’m angry this is 16x20……like k glad I have money to print something that huge off. But whateh-r.

I feel like I don’t blog nearly as much in illustration as I did in VCII.

I just don’t have as much to bitch about?

I mean. I’m behind on some deadlines, but not by much. I’m not super overwhlemed, I’m just kinda doing my stuff, doing it how I want. And going with it. 

Sent some prints over to get printed out today so those will finally be ready. 

I’m excited about my society of illustrators illustration though. I’ve always been super into old anatomical illustrations/prints? They are more prints, so I had to kind of deal with making what is normally done in printmaking and transfer that over to an illustration. But it wasn’t bad. Used a lot of hatching and some stippling. 

I really like how the illustration ended up. I’m just doing a normal weird wash to go behind it. I tried a new technique that I think I was always afraid to try before and I did wet on wet. 

I got my blog looking exactly how I wanted it with just plain old water and then came in and barely touched it with some paint to get a weird explosive effect. 

I don’t know why I didn’t do that before? I feel like that would’ve helped me in a lot of my other watercolor illustrations. But I think I was too afraid to do it…which is so stupid. But whatever. I’m stupid sometimes. 

Anyway. I’ll be posted the society of illustrators thing in a second.

Okay for some reason when I upload this as a jpeg it gets all pixelated….?Idk why that’s happening. It’s at the normal max quality in RGB for this, so idk why it’s doing that. But it’s making me angry and I do not have time to figure out what’s going on. ANYWAY. So yeah! The illustration.I did directional line art for the illustration which was actually pretty enjoyable. It was fun to try something different, and go back to line art instead of painting something. Just switch it up. It took me about 2 hours to do the illustration and I was happy with how it turned out. It was pretty tough reading and understanding the planes on the feathers, since those are pretty everywhere I feel like. But! Yeah regardless. As far as the design goes. I used a duotone for this. The pantone color I used was PANTONE 637 C. And then obviously using plenty of tints of that color. I think my concept was that there is another side to what we see when it comes to Native American’s, and that it what this whole week that we are advertising represents. I think to visually communicate that it is Native American Heritage Month we had to use some type of element that represents the a-typical Native American culture. Which is fine. So that’s why I went with what I did. Hoping that my illustration was good enough to trump the fact that it’s cliche. The other side is the tag line and then visually represented with change in colors and such. I used blending options for the right side, I think I used exclusion for that? I like how that ended up looking, it really helps bring out the texture in the feathers. Split up the events a little bit. La la la. Just normal old layout stuff. Nothing fancy or crazy there. I was sure if I should’ve bolded/italicized certain things? I always struggle with thinking about that. I’ll think about that tomorrow I think. Once I got my initial layout down I just tried to balance it as much as possible. Overall I liked how this turned out. It didn’t take toooo long? I’d say probably 4 hours total including the making of the illustration. 

Okay for some reason when I upload this as a jpeg it gets all pixelated….?

Idk why that’s happening. It’s at the normal max quality in RGB for this, so idk why it’s doing that. 

But it’s making me angry and I do not have time to figure out what’s going on. 

ANYWAY. So yeah! The illustration.

I did directional line art for the illustration which was actually pretty enjoyable. It was fun to try something different, and go back to line art instead of painting something. Just switch it up. 

It took me about 2 hours to do the illustration and I was happy with how it turned out. It was pretty tough reading and understanding the planes on the feathers, since those are pretty everywhere I feel like. But! Yeah regardless. 

As far as the design goes. I used a duotone for this. The pantone color I used was PANTONE 637 C. And then obviously using plenty of tints of that color. 

I think my concept was that there is another side to what we see when it comes to Native American’s, and that it what this whole week that we are advertising represents. I think to visually communicate that it is Native American Heritage Month we had to use some type of element that represents the a-typical Native American culture. Which is fine. So that’s why I went with what I did. Hoping that my illustration was good enough to trump the fact that it’s cliche. 

The other side is the tag line and then visually represented with change in colors and such. I used blending options for the right side, I think I used exclusion for that? I like how that ended up looking, it really helps bring out the texture in the feathers. 

Split up the events a little bit. La la la. Just normal old layout stuff. Nothing fancy or crazy there. I was sure if I should’ve bolded/italicized certain things? I always struggle with thinking about that. I’ll think about that tomorrow I think. 

Once I got my initial layout down I just tried to balance it as much as possible. 

Overall I liked how this turned out. It didn’t take toooo long? I’d say probably 4 hours total including the making of the illustration. 

Speaking of which…I don’t think I’ve uploaded this yet??This is my Number 3 illustration. Just some coffee…ground up, brewed, empty. I like the subject matter on this one too! Because I live on coffee. So this worked out well for me. And I had fun with this one. I finally started to trust the wash after I laid it down, especially in the coffee cup that’s “empty” or whatever. I actually used someee coffee on it, not a lot because it’s sticky, but it was fun to work with. It was hard to get the shadows of the mugs to look super normal, but I think it’s okay with this because it is more expressive and such. And line art made more sense in this. It left room for negative space, and it was so solidified. Overall I was happy with this! Didn’t take me long. Maybe an hour and a half. Which is weird, but hey. Didn’t want to mess with it too much. 

Speaking of which…I don’t think I’ve uploaded this yet??

This is my Number 3 illustration. Just some coffee…ground up, brewed, empty. 

I like the subject matter on this one too! Because I live on coffee. So this worked out well for me. 

And I had fun with this one. I finally started to trust the wash after I laid it down, especially in the coffee cup that’s “empty” or whatever. 

I actually used someee coffee on it, not a lot because it’s sticky, but it was fun to work with. It was hard to get the shadows of the mugs to look super normal, but I think it’s okay with this because it is more expressive and such. And line art made more sense in this. It left room for negative space, and it was so solidified. 

Overall I was happy with this! Didn’t take me long. Maybe an hour and a half. Which is weird, but hey. Didn’t want to mess with it too much. 

So here is my world record illustration, digitally done. The world record is the largest glass of beer ever created/filled. A pub in Ireland filled an 8-foot tall glass of beer and filled it 430 gallons of Guinness. Haha, so it was a fun subject matter to work with. Obviously exaggerated it. Digital takes forever, but after some tutorials recommended by Rusty and some YouTube tutorials it got done. I really like it!It makes me lol thinking about certain illustrations I do to compared to others by the way. I was thinking about this, a few gouache ones I’ve done (purse and woman with a headress), and then my 3 illustrated. And it’s just so weird to me to think about how some illustrations come so easily. I literally spent like 1.5 on my 3 illustration, and it turned out sooo much better than my life and death which took me forever? And still looks like shit? And still needs to be redone…………………Anyway. Yeah. I think I just figured out I have a looser style, I don’t like the whole…draw the art…color the lines in kinda thing. I like starting with a loose pencil drawing and then going in and doing the paint and coming in with more expressive lines afterward with a pen or something.As far as digital goes…I don’t know if I have a style with that? But yeah. Digital was interesting to delve into…….will probably do it again before the semester is over for sure!

So here is my world record illustration, digitally done. 

The world record is the largest glass of beer ever created/filled. A pub in Ireland filled an 8-foot tall glass of beer and filled it 430 gallons of Guinness. Haha, so it was a fun subject matter to work with. 

Obviously exaggerated it. 

Digital takes forever, but after some tutorials recommended by Rusty and some YouTube tutorials it got done. I really like it!

It makes me lol thinking about certain illustrations I do to compared to others by the way. I was thinking about this, a few gouache ones I’ve done (purse and woman with a headress), and then my 3 illustrated. And it’s just so weird to me to think about how some illustrations come so easily. 

I literally spent like 1.5 on my 3 illustration, and it turned out sooo much better than my life and death which took me forever? And still looks like shit? And still needs to be redone…………………

Anyway. Yeah. I think I just figured out I have a looser style, I don’t like the whole…draw the art…color the lines in kinda thing. I like starting with a loose pencil drawing and then going in and doing the paint and coming in with more expressive lines afterward with a pen or something.

As far as digital goes…I don’t know if I have a style with that? But yeah. Digital was interesting to delve into…….will probably do it again before the semester is over for sure!

So this is completely un-illustration related. Buttt yeah. 

I’ve been thinking about life, and portfolios, and just what I liked to do with my skillz (the very few I have) and such. 

And anyway, me and my friend, she goes to the School of the Art Institute in Chicago, we are kind of sorta collaborating right now on some projects?

Me and Kristen are also thinking about doing some collaborating? Sooo I think I just need to start thinking in terms of collaborating in generallllll, and making cool shit. Sometimes people just wanna buy cool shit from ya. 

Anyway. I like floral things…floral prints are just something I find aesthetically pleasing..whether they’re on a quilt, phone case, etc. Sooo yeah. This was a doodle that I made today, I vectored it, and then created a pattern in photoshop. And idk…idk where it will lead me or anything. But maybe some type of textile designing in the future would be something I’m interested in? Idk, this is very basic shtuff. But hey, it gets me excited about designing things. 

I’m thinking about creating a series of these floral prints and then trying to apply them through a few things. Like on thank you cards, on a backpack, on a scarf, etcccc, and yeah. I also think I could incorporate it in the aesthetics of branding myself. 

I have these weird urge to add some type of grungy feel to this. 

Idk. Just random thoughts. Why I did this instead of study for my two tests, idk, couldn’t tell ya. But yeah. Updates on this to comeee.

UGH.

Ugh is the title of this post. 

Because I’m working on my life versus death illustration, which…looks like a 5 year old drew it. 

I hate it. But I don’t think I hate it because it’s the worst illustration in the world. I just don’t like it because it’s not my style. And I hate it, because I don’t think illustration has been showing off my style off at all.

Which is fine…I think we’re trying to build up skills and all that shtuff, which is cool and fine. But I’m getting frustrated. Nothing I’m making is anything I want to show off, I mean a few of my earlier things I liked enough to show others. But I think I’m getting to the point where I’m realizing certain projects are clicking with me, and other ones aren’t.

And that’s okay. I’m okay with. But I get stressed out. Cause I have to go to class the next day and show people these shitty illustrations that I DID in fact try on, but they just look stupid. 

I’m rambling about shite that doesn’t make sense. 

And yeah. I’m excited about my number 3 illustration. I think this, like the purse, is a subject manner I’ll enjoy more so I’ll probably have a easier time pulling it off, and enjoying it. 

The end. Basically the life and death one sucks right now. But I’m going to try to add some contrast to it, some more line art? But I think I just need to sit on it for a little bit. The end. Bitch sesh over. 

Okay, so I definitely spent quite a bit of time on the product illustration of the Celine bag, purse, dealiooo. I started with gouache just because I feel like that would give it the texture and highlights I was needing, just because it’s a thick material, and gouache normally helps give it that kind of feel. I really enjoyed working on this one, I think adding some darks it helped it, but also made it harder to work with. Rusty said it looked like a face, so that ruined for me as well. But yeah! I think the colors and everything else are pretty spot on, a few areas could be worked on, but I didn’t add too many details because it was going to be sized down eventually. 

Yeah, I probably spent about 4.5 hours on the whole thing. 

And thennn the slavery illustration was interesting.

I had quite a few different concepts, but I couldn’t seem to draw them the way I want to, I had an image in my mind but I couldn’t visualize it and go on to draw it. SO. I pulled some inspiration from the works in the gallery right now, and he does quite a bit of layering with larger images and then smaller people in the front, and I like the idea of having this thicker lines and windows. Just so people could see how slavery has transformed and trickled down from African American slavery to child labor/sex trafficking/etc. 

I used watercolor for this piece, and I wanted to work with monochrome colors just to unify all the images, because they are unified by slavery. And then have a bolder color in the back to make it pop. 

I liked the colors were they were, and I added in some line work to make things pop a bit more. 

Then Rusty told me to go “gonzo” on something. Which, I’m slightly rebelling against because I don’t know what to go “gonzo” on. I don’t want to do anything to the faces, so that rules all of those out. I like the colors? I made the red darker and that’s about as “gonzo” as I got. And, this is an illustration for a poster…so I didn’t want to get to conceptual or crazy with it just because that’s probably something that would also be achieved in the design?

I don’t know. I couldn’t figure out what that “thing” was. So I just went with this, and I’m still happy with it. It’s not my favorite, favorite thing I’ve done. But I do like the faces on here. I think they show my progress with watercolor, considering where I started with it all. 

So yep! I probably spent about 3.5 hours on this illustration, which was maybe too little. 

Midterm Portfolio Post

Line illustrations

So for the line art I have a good example from each set of them besides the organic section I believe. I used one from our portrait ten, one from the architectural ten, and then two from the “whatever we want” category.

These are easily the best examples, and each probably took me around 30 minutes to do, so nothing too outrageous. I think that these all show different types of shading with line and such. Mostly directional lines, very little hatching and such. The portrait line art shows probably my best example of using and understanding line art to create shadows and highlights. I think that I started understanding that changing the direction of line will help show 3-demensiality? If that’s a word. Especially in the hat of the portrait, and on the camera. 

Overall there’s not much else to say about these, they just show my best handle on line art, and not over killing the line art, because that happened plenty. Or I under-killed it? Especially with my first few. 

Gouache: 

I hope that one day I can type gouache without having to think about it for 25 minutes, that would be phenomenal. 

Anyway, so for the gouache, my first portrait turned out well, in my opinion at least. The pick out technique allowed me to control more, which is always good for me, I have a hard time letting things just flow randomly and then get messed up. I think it also allowed me to understand where certain lines can be implied and such, I learned that when I was working with the lips. 

I think the face definitely demonstrates my understanding for highlights and shadows and such, and the contrast of her headress helps balance the highlights of her face and such. 

The second gouache I did was a little bit different. It was done with a pretty bright red which is always hard to pick out from I noticed. But I didn’t give up on it, I decided that I’d just pick out as much as I could, and then add back in, because I liked the illustration enough. 

I added in whites, and some light blues, and even some yellows to make things pop. I didn’t want to add too many colors in just because that can make it complicated and over kill it. I spent a lot of time on this one actually which is hard to see I feel like. But this one definitely shows my style. I’ve realized I’m not this perfect painter, I don’t stay in the lines and all that jazz. So I’m just starting to understand that it’s not my style, and it’s not my strength. I’m working with what I’ve got and enjoying it a lot more, more expressive lines and messy feels are what I’m going with, and I think that is definitely seen with this gouache piece. It’s not perfect by any means, but I don’t think I could describe it as a weak piece for that reason. 

Watercolors:

Oh the struggle with watercolors…it never ends. 

Anyway, with the Truman spot I had an easier time because I had finally got watercolor paints that didn’t all look like shit brown when I painted with them, so I was less afraid to add pigment which helped. 

I think that drawing and line art always help my illustrations after I get the paint down. I try to get the general outline done with pencil, go in with my watercolor, and then finish off with line art. So that’s what I did with the Truman spot. The sky washes are a little week, but I fixed up the cloud from the first attempt and that looked a lot better. Implying the grass looks a lot better in the second version as well. This one wasn’t very difficult for me to do, I didn’t think about it so much I just kind of went with it and then it turned out great. So I don’t think I have many thoughts that went on in my lil’ brain to talk about. 

The next one is my scaled up watercolor. The big one. I don’t remember the size off the top of my head. I went ahead and re-did one, just because the first one I did was a fox mask on a girl with smoke coming out of it. And that’s really hard to show with watercolor, it just doesn’t happen. SO I ended up doing this venetian scene. It’s okay. I think that the colors are pretty bright and such, but it could use a bit more contrast. I think it still shows a better handle on watercolor than my previous ones, I start trusting where the watercolor is moving with the windows on the main building. I think that shows that. But otherwise I still think that I’m scared to trust where the watercolor is moving, so I feel like I’m almost just coloring in things. I need some more white on the page and such. But hey, still not bad. 

Then I did the hump day camel, this one was kind of experimental. I just wanted to play with washes and drips and splatters. So no, it’s not some crazy cool watercolor that took me 9 hours. This one is a re-do as well. Most of the watercolors are new ones, just because those landscapes and such from the beginning were prettttty bad if you ask me. So the hump day thing is just for fun, I think it’s still fine, just some simple shadows and highlights, a little line art, and then random experimentation in the background.

And then the last piece was another watercolor that I redid as well. This one actually took me quite some time. I really planned out the concept, and i am not using the lucy for any of these watercolors except the Truman spot and then outlines the general area of the buildings for the second one. This last one was my imagination, so I was pretty happy with how it turned out. It’s just a city scene, and I was just playing with color and such here, again trying to trust it and leaving white space, which didn’t end up happening, but I was trying throughout the piece to do so. I think I had a fun time seeing where the oranges and yellows and reds ended up. And I liked the contrast between those and the blues. I was paying a lot of attention to colors and such. I just like the warm colors a lot. I think that again this one shows my style off, just this messy random style, where there aren’t perfect lines and such. 

Overall I think there was a lot of progress to be seen. When I was looking back at my first few line illustrations and my first few watercolors, they were extremely poor. I thought this class was going to kill me. And I’m by no means a super great illustrator, but hey, it’s so much better than what it used to be. 

I think getting new colors helped, and trying all the techniques helped quite a bit as well. I think the watercolor is where you see the most improvement. Gouache is still my favorite? I don’t know how I feel about it with scenes and such, the three object gouache wasn’t the worst thing ever, each individual item looked okay alone, but together as a composition they weren’t helping each other out. And the black line I added at the end pretty much ruined it. So that was unfortunate. 

I think if I would’ve done the succulents by themselves using gouache that would’ve been cool. Gouache is definitely my favorite thing to use. I like the effect if it gives when it comes to shadows and highlights and midtones, I mean that’s the best portrait I’ve ever done…and I didn’t even have to draw. Normally I have to draw or add line art in to make something look good. So not having to do that is awesome. 

So la la la that was all the lovely technical shit we have to say! 

As far as bitching and whining goes - I don’t think it’s illustration that pisses me off. I think it’s all the random shit I’m involved with that makes it harder for me to DO my illustration homework. I spent almost 4 hours doing the “mi sono sentita viva” which means “i felt alive” btw….and I really enjoyed it. I also really enjoyed doing the gouache. But a lot of these aren’t the best because I don’t have the time to dedicate to them. I mean I stay up until like 3 each night and all my classes are 7:30. Which is my fault, I shouldn’t be involved in so much, but still, it pisses me off when I know I can make cool shit but don’t have the time too. Especially with Creative Photography…..can’t even get me started on that. 

But yeah…not as much to bitch about when it comes to illustration - I think that’s because I’ve already had Vis Comm II where we were just constantly working on shit and there was plenty to bitch about because we had a new project like ever 2.5 seconds. This isn’t that bad at alllllll in comparison. So! I’m kind of glad I have VCII before this. 

Now I feel like I’m blabbing and I’m not even being sassy enough for a typical Becca blog post. So I’m just going to end here. 

This is my midterm portfolio. La la la. The end!

And then here is some stuff from my internship this summer!

It’s hard to show much from it. But I helped them redesign this website and I did the coding for it, which was actually not too bad because I was just using blogger. 

I wish I had a picture of what it looked like before - completely different. 

And no, this is not some crazy graphic design - this isn’t from some prestigious design firm. But it was such an experience. Working for a woman who’s worked as an assistant at Marie Claire magazine, had internships at Burberry and Escada and is a restaurant consultant for places like Gibsons in Chicago…yeah that’s terrifying. Haha.

But. I learned a lot. I did mainly basic photoshop, picking out photos, fonts, blah blah blah. Once the re-design of the website was done I just went back to doing these photoshop collages. Which - sounds super super simple - and it is. But…arranging clothes on a page and getting the composition right every time, is not an easy task. I got the hang of it after being there for 4 months, but you could stare at a shoe for like an hour and a half and wonder which way it looks best. 

So I did a lot of staring and adjusting. But I also would take jackets off of models for instance and photoshop them into still life clothing. I’d also go looking for the editorial content. I’d be given a task like “Becca I need you to go find about 20 jacekts for fall - quilted jackets.” Or Becca, “Here’s a model, check out her street style, try to find products that look similar.” The whole idea was to find expensive products and then find look alikes for cheap, hence Stingy Style.

Then I’d create the blog post, I did some coding, and I would link each piece back to make sure my boss got commission off those pieces. Sometimes she would make money per click, or money if someone actually went and bought a product. Blah blah blah. It’s complicated. 

And then I also did some social media for them as well. Using things like HootSuite, and Pinterest, some Facebook-ing, Google Analytics helped me with quite a few things as well. It’s all about SEO - Search Engine Optimization. 

There’s a lot more to a good blog than it looks. 

There are so many innerworkings so I was working closely with that as well. 

I was by myself as an intern for a month so I dabbled in a little bit of everything. 

Then the other interns showed up - a social media intern, an editorial intern, and another graphic design intern. And then all the assistants and such. 

So. It was an awesome experience, too much to put in a single blog post. And not enough pictures to put in one blog post. But I did want to talk about it a little bit. And just say that, even if you don’t get an internship at something fancy, it’s okay. Any experience is good experience, and don’t be afraid to do it!

The end.

Also that random logo at the end is for a pretty cool organization! Just did it quickly this summer….they still haven’t paid me. So that’s really awesome. Learned to make sure to get paid at least half before I start doing this shit. Gotta love people. But yeah. It was super simple and they love it. (Not enough to pay me or answer my emails) BUT HEY. Happiness.