Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Where it all happens...

Today is the last day of school for my kiddies. The excitement and energy in our house, with the anticipation of summer,  is so abundant you can just about taste it. It will be nice to not be ruled by the clock for 2 long months and to really get in some good quality bonding time with my little monkeys.:)

 I hope to get a whole bunch accomplished over the summer up, more portfolio pieces, and business side of things up and running.  And my wish list of illustration related items keeps growing....eeek !sorry hubby :(.  The more I delve into this wonderful world of illustration the more I realize that I am really going to need to get myself Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator. I tried each out this year using the trial version. I am hoping to get the Adobe Creative Suite at some looks so fantastic.  I'd also like to get a scanner, for my sketches...if only I could scan my plasticine illos...grumble.  For this reason I am also looking into digital SLR cameras, so I can hopefully take good photos myself for portfolio work etc, and then only need to hire a professional for illustration work.....I'm looking at the Canon Rebel XS and the  Nikon D3000. If anyone has any thoughts/ suggestions or preferences I'd be happy to hear them!! :)

I just purchased the Graphic Artist's Guild Handbook of Pricing and Ethical Guidelines. It is chalk full of everything I will need from contact info, pricing, forms, copyright info ...the list goes on. I know it will be full of earmarks and well worked-in over the next few year. If you don't already have it I highly recommend it.

Now I should go tidy up my desk!!! I know,I know it is a MESS! It's like a plasticine bomb blew up all over it!!! :)

Sunday, June 27, 2010

I'm finished!!!! Yeah!!

I am happy to report that my final "End of the year -Teacher Gift" plasticine illustration  is now completed!! I was getting a little worried as time was just evaporating and fiinding some time, with all of the end of school craziness was harder to come by than previous years.
I am very pleased with how this illo turned out. I think son#2's teacher will really appreciate the Canadian animal theme, and I had so much fun making them. Below are a few detail shots of the new characters I just added.  


Friday, June 25, 2010

There's a moose on the loose...

I am almost finished the last of the teacher gift illos! Yeah!!! I sure hope they like them!
This is for son#2's grade 1 teacher. She loves polar bears and moose, so I thought a Canadian animal theme would be perfect! I have one more animal to add, and I am torn between a blue heron and a chipmunk. I will have to think on that a bit....if anyone has any suggestions I would loooove to hear them!! :)

I think I will be making many more moose (is there a plural for moose anyway??) in the future....I really enjoyed creating this big furry guy...I really love their serene soft faces, they look so gentle for such  a humongous animal.

And here is a close up of my little lonely beaver friend....don't worry little guy I will have a little friend near you really soon!! The texture was fun on this little guy too.

Bye for now :)

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Hoo hoo hoooo.....

I'm not yet finished my third teacher gift illo quite yet, but I thought I'd post a detail photo of the work in progress. I am really liking my tiny, squirmy baby polar bear- he is just barely hangin' on there- "don't fall little guy!" I am also pleased with how my horned owl turned out. It was the trickest one yet, with all the brown and white feather detail, but I am fairly happy with it. Hopefully I will have it completed by tomorrow night :)

I'd love some feedback from you guys so feel free to leave a comment. ;)

Monday, June 21, 2010

Finished another Teacher Gift Illo- One more to go...

I just completed my teacher gift illo for my oldest son's teacher. As I stated in an earlier post, his illo has a rainforest animal theme. I had a fun time researching and creating these cool animals. There were so many fun animals to choose from that I had a hard time narrowing it down. I wanted to depict a bunch of different textures- smooth, slick frog skin, reptilian scales to furry was really fun to go texture-crazy. Here are some detail images.

Now I am busy working on my son#2's grade 1 teacher illo. According to my son, this teacher is a real animal lover and has many favorite animals including  moose and polar bears. So I thought it would be fun to include Canadian animals in her illo. I am thinking about creating  a horned owl,  moose, baby polar bear, and canada goose. I've got a week to get this finished as next Wednesday is the last day of school- ekkkk. Nothing like a deadline to get me moving right? No pressure ;)

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Teacher Gift Updates..

This illo. is for son #3's teacher. She teaches JK/SK, so I thought fun, silly little mice might be a fun choice to have scampering around her name block pyramid. If you look closely you can see each mouse has their own little personality-I just love the little guy on the top bustin' some moves! 

The illo for my oldest son's teacher is almost finished. I thought since he is a male grade 3 teacher, the illo needed animals that weren't girly or immature.  So, I chose the animals of the rainforest. I think they are a  good fit, because they are very intriguing, exotic and, which is very important when you in grade 3(wink) . I still have a few more animals to add but here it is so far...

I really like that I could add lots of textures in this illo...maybe I will add a lion, or something with fur or a snake or both?? I wanted these animals to be dynamic too, so all of then will be either jumping or flying...well except Mr. Iguana ...he is just vegging since they don't really do much unless they are chomping their prey (ewwwww!). Here is a close-up of my parrot. I like how he is swooping down to land.

I have this one to finish up, then one more for son#2's grade 1 teacher- that one will be a surprise I will save for another day ;)

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Illustrators are such a helpful bunch!!

Can I just say how much I am loving the friendly, generous and overall helpful/"paying it forward" sorta folks in the illustration business. It is so refreshing to continually meet like minded people who are encouraging and supportive, instead of the usual cut-throat mentality I have seen for so long in the business, and workplace world.
 Especially now that I am seriously trying to get an illustration business off the ground, and have no real business background, it is such a gift to have a bunch of resources that other more seasoned illustrators have put together to help us newbies out. THANKS GUYS!!
I wanted to take a second and mention a few awesome websites and books that I have found to be very helpful, informative and ...well invaluable.

I'm sure most illustrators have heard of Escape from Illustration Island. If you have not, go there now!!! Because for TODAY ONLY, it's creator Thomas James has a 50%off sale on his brand new ebook 15 Steps to Freelance Illustration. I just bought it myself, and took a quick look through and it has put a humongous smile on my face!! I can't wait till the kiddies are asleep and I can get into it:) Form a glance it looks like it is chalk full of good stuff!

Another book I highly recommend is Breaking into Freelance Illustration: a guide for Artists, Designers and Illustrators, by Holly DeWolf. This one has a permanent place on my bedside table, it serves up some great inspiration when I'm feeling off track and has so many helpful insights from a ton of great illustrators-it is a must-have !

I've also been following Jonathan Woodward's blog Zero 2 Illo. Talk about being proactive(and a new father-whewww), he has developed a 12 week plan/challenge to get him (and others who have taken on this challenge) up and running with their illustration business. What a fantastic idea!! It definitely gives me loads to think about; helps me focus and prioritize my target goals; and get my head wrapped around what steps I will need to take in order to be realistically prepared and organized to "open up shop".

See what I mean?? And those are but a few of the many resources available.

Many illustrators have said that they see a huge hole in the education system. They see new illustrators coming out of art school with tons of illustration/design knowledge but little in the way of business knowledge. It is very commendable that many of these illustrators have taken it upon themselves to write their own books or articles to ensure that up and coming illustrators have access to this material and can learn from their real world experience in the illustration business.

I  want to send out a big THANKS to all of you who have taken the time out of your busy careers to fill this void. All of it is so greatly appreciated!!
And I hope one day I will be able to pay it forward too!!

Monday, June 14, 2010

More Ripples...

With all the momentum that Kelly Light's Ripple blog has gathered, I thought I'd jump back on the wave and donate another illo. This one is a cropped version of one I did last year, but I thought it was fitting.

And Ripple is featured on Illustration Friday this week! What a great way to bring the Ripple blog to the attention of many more in the online illustration community.

 Kelly has raised $1500 last time I checked- amazing!!!

Way to go illustrators!!!

Wednesday, June 9, 2010


The other day I came across this great blog by Kelly Light called Ripple. Kelly is a talented children's book illustrator who was so moved by the plight of the animals effected by the Gulf oil spill that she decided to be proactive, and came up with this creative way to help. She created this blog where illustrators could submit artcards to be purchased for $10 with the proceeds going towards  a variety of  animal rescue organizations. So brilliant!
I made this pelican illustration for Ripple....The digital image of it will be used to create the card.
She has raised hundreds of dollars already!! Way to go Kelly!!
I know we are all so deeply saddened by the horrible images we have witnessed in the media surrounding the oil spill disaster. But we can all help. As Kelly so eloquently said "our small actions together will ripple outward".
I hope you will take a moment to visit her blog. There are many beautiful cards created by some very talented illustrators from all over the world, and they can be yours with a donation of $10 .
It makes me feel a little less helpless to know that my small contribution will hopefully help in some small way.
So if you are an illustrator or artist, or animal lover please pop over to her site...and please pass it on!

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Where did May go???

Wow, didn't May just fly at lightening speed?? I feel like I have been in fast forward juggling a million things. There are always end of year permission forms, allergy/asthma forms(my sons have anaphylactic allergies and asthma), school registration forms etc. etc....I've had such a hand cramp!  And that is even before I get started on my artwork- geeeesh!!
Well, the end of year teacher gifts are coming along, but not a quickly as I would like. It took a little longer than anticipated to make all of my alphabet letter blocks. I wanted them to look authentic, so they are made in the correct colours(of my set any way) and to scale. I hope they look OK, trying to get plasticine strips to stay sharp and straight was a technical headache, but I am happy with the result :)
 Now for the really fun part! For each illo. I am going to create a different bunch of characters playing around, assembling and climbing each letter pyramid. (If you are a teacher friend please keep this post our little secret OK-wink wink)
I sure hope they like them!


Related Posts with Thumbnails