Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Alley Cat in Highlights Magazine

I'm happy to announce I have an illustration in the May issue of Highlights magazine–ON NEWSSTANDS NOW!

Fun saying that...

The great folks at Highlights asked me to illustrate a poem called "Alley Cat" by Valck Georges. The poem is about a feline stalking imaginary foes. I was happy to have a whole page to draw my cat walking a spooky street filled with menacing shadows, blood-curdling clouds and frightening architecture...

Okay, I just got carried away with my adjectives.

Creatively, it was fun to play on the drama implied in the text. The foreshortening, skewed angles and muted tones all convey unease and possible danger... but not too much–it's a magazine for children after all:)

The final art is a digitally-colored pencil drawing. I used Photoshop and my trusty Wacom tablet.

Here's a look at the digital painting in progress.

Above: my final sketch. Below are early thumbnails where I'm experimenting with different approaches to the composition.

If you have kids ages 6-12, make sure they are reading Highlights! It's a great magazine–and not just because I'm in the current issue!

Monday, April 19, 2010

A Butt Full of Birdshot

X-ray of our dog "Q." The white dots? A bum full of birdshot. No, we haven't been using him for target practice. Apparently he was up to no good in his youth – trampling Mr. McGregor's garden, perhaps?

Friday, April 9, 2010

Illustration Friday: Dip

Update: I accidently illustrated last week's topic! Sorry folks!

It's been awhile since I participated in Illustration Friday–I took a crack at this week's topic, Dip, because I was eager to: (A) experiment with some new Photoshop techniques and (B) draw for the fun of it!)

I gave myself a two hour window to illustrate a boy after too long a dip in the ocean. I didn't agonize over the proportions–instead I focused on the pose and expression (but not for too long).

I scanned my sketch and first painted tonal values. Once the greyscale tones were finished, I added color on a layer above. This color layer was set to multiply, allowing the tonal values below to darkening the color. I probably should show some examples of this process, maybe in a later post–I've exceeded my two hour limit and need to get myself to work!