About Me

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Indiana, United States
I have done pictures since I can remember. I took all the art classes in junior high and high school I could and naturally became an art major in college. I graduated with a BFA in art and writing and marry the two by writing and illustrating children's books.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Alone in the Topiary Garden:

New #illustration. Peek at each stage in the process. Here you see #thumbnails of the #illustration idea.
I always say that no one can understand my thumbnails but me. That's OK because they're intended to help me work out my picture design and placement of elements. If an art director wants to see thumbnails, then I'll do cleaner, crisper thumbnails for him/her.
Next stage will be the under drawing. This will be an oil painting, so the drawing will be done to size (5.5"X8.5"—such as a book cover), then enlarged 200% in order to make painting it easier.
The narrative behind this is a girl briskly making her way out of a topiary garden full of odd characters and apparently also full of activity. I have some notes on my sketch in the upper right. While sketching, I had to decide what to include. What makes a good topiary? Flamingo, ostrich, urn, dolphin, dinosaur. I settled on the flamingo, ostrich, urn and way in the background, up high, will be an Egyptian, walking just like Egyptians always do.
Here's a help: the girl is in the lower right corner hustling out of the picture to the right. We, the viewers, are kind of low, looking up at her—that gives us a good underneath view of the topiaries. The ostrich (neck and head only) comes in from the left and is trying to nab her by the skirt.
That's all for now. Update on Old King Cole. I thought he'd be done and posted by tomorrow, but some of the small foreground detail is still wet, and it needs to dry so that I can finalize highlights and sharpen some edges.
Sorry for my cryptic opening and the pound signs (#). My blog is fed into my Twitter, and I want it to stay within 140 characters and contain good search term potential. The #s are supposed to help with that.


Joyce said...

Your process confounds me! Interesting about cover being enlarged for painting.

I am trying to understand the hash marks thing. So when I see them in a tweet they aren't there for any other reason than to increase search results?

Nathan said...

My process. It's a good thing to do the original artwork at least 50% larger than it will finally appear. That way, when it's scanned, it picks up the detail better and when it's reduced down, everything seems to sharpen up too. Plus, it helps the artist work on the smaller detail.