Sunday, January 31, 2010

Daydreaming of a studio

Hello all,
I know I just posted a few days ago, but I was pondering my future career, and then wandered into fantasies of a perfect studio. Working in a tiny space that also serves as your bedroom, library, closet, and lounging area isn't so easy. I find myself placing artwork or supplies on other things precariously, and then when I need that space, having to move it to another over-crowded spot. I am a very, very organized person, so this is not a cleanliness issue. Just a lack of space! The idea of having a designated area for my supplies, inspiration on the wall, papers in a filing drawer, and artwork in various labeled portfolios is so exciting! I know I'll have a writing desk for my computer, printer, and paperwork, and a drafting table for my projects. Although I already have one, there is a very nice model at Ikea that has a built-in light table. Needless to say, it caught my eye!

This (my desk now and personal belongings)


this (me in an Ikea workspace dream. The clips on the wall- genius! The drawers for large paper- inspired! The yellow wall- beautiful!)


this (a cozy, cute, and old little home in quirky Austin, Texas)



Any thoughts to share on a perfect studio space?
And just to get a little art in, here's a painting of me painting (old school Caitlin art)

"Self Portrait as the Allegory of Painting" 2008, Acrylic paint

That's all for now!

Thursday, January 28, 2010

I think I can, I think I can...

Hi everybody! Well, this quarter is stuffed full of art, to say the least. It's going to be tough, but I can't wait to look back on it, knowing I devoted everything I had and did the best I could! Plus, hopefully, I'll have some killer portfolio pieces. A quick update on all my projects and such:

Starting February 12th, I will have my piece "Cat" in SCAD's Poetter Hall for the Society of Illustrator's Humane Society Benefit show. It's for sale, and the proceeds go the Humane Society. If you are in Savannah, you should check it out!

"Cat" 2009, Watercolor and Ink

My first relief print is finished! The composition was originally a tight square around the rabbit, but my professor and I decided it would pop much more on a solid black, and larger background. I used chine-colle to glue the cut-out rabbits onto 30 inch by 44 inch pieces of black western paper. It was a massive undertaking, but paid off quite nicely-- one of the three prints is now hanging in Alexander Hall, and another was held by my professor for the printmaking department.

"Bunny 2/3" 2010, Relief Print with Chine Colle

My pirate piece is complete, as well. I attempted to create an off-register look with gouache paint, and added detail with ink. The colors and symmetry are based off of illustrator great Maxfield Parrish's work. Here's a sample:

©Maxfield Parrish, 1908 "Lantern Bearers"
Here's my final piece:

"Captain Rory" 2010, Gouache and Ink

No finished pieces yet for Children's Book. We have spent the last four weeks on story-writing, spread-planning, composition-making, character-sketching, and layout-roughing. Here are some scans of my character development. This character is Francis, the girl who lives in a city apartment with her mother, and enjoys reading and writing. Her pet is a fish.

Francis as a concept during page layout. The sketches below were added later in an attempt to recreate the original pose.

First pencil sketch of Francis. Very stiff!

More pencil sketches, with newer pen ones next to them, attempting to be looser.

Redo of the layouts- Francis takes more shape, now that I've done a few character design sketches.

Sketching Francis acting as though she would in the book.

Working out the interaction between Francis and her fish.

Finally some color studies (after re-drawing all the roughs large-scale to be traced for the final artwork)! Her jacket will be collage, and the rest qouache paint.

I decided to do the outlines in a color relative to what it would be surrounding. The colors here aren't exactly right since I wasn't using a very good scanner, but you get the idea. My, how she's grown! And to think I haven't even begun (and have five other kids! Eesh!)
So much for this being quick. Oh well. Time for bed!

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

What a busy quarter it will be!

Hello all,
I started classes back up a week ago yesterday, and I can see already how intense it is going to be! My Survey of Illustration class is not only a lecture (with two exams, two papers, note-taking, the works), but a studio class as well (four assignments complete with sketching and roughs and critiques)! Our first assignment is to create a piece illustrating a pirate of choice, using some form of inspiration from any of the illustrators we covered whom worked from about 1890 to 1920. The task is clearly taken from Howard Pyle's love of pirate illustration. I have chosen to illustrate my dad as a pirate. He is rather obsessed with the idea of being scoundrel on the sea (in a past life, I suppose) and I couldn't resist the minute I heard what our project was! It is too perfect! So far, all I have are sketches though, so no solid work to show just yet.

©Howard Pyle 1902- Illustration for "Harper's New Monthly Magazine"

In Relief Printmaking, I have begun my first wood cut print. The task is extremely daunting! I chose to try a 24 by 24 inch piece for my first try- we'll see how that works out. It's getting a bit easier to control the carving tools, but today I will do my first test print, and that will let me know for sure how much I'm improving! My concept for the piece is pretty simple- its a fat, round, graphic rabbit fitting sung within the square border of the wood. I'm going to be doing a lot of pattern work inside for his fur. I'm pretty nervous about this one! Here's a photo reference for the pattern. It's taken from my nasty old mat in the bathroom! Funny where you'll find inspiration sometimes...

And, saving the best for last, I'm LOVING Children's Book! The class is going to be a ton of work, but I am so excited about it. After seeing some of my previous work (including my book "Only With You"), he told me that I was "born to do children's books" which is a massive compliment coming from a man who is very successful himself in the field! Needless to say, it made my day. I've already learned a ton about the process, and know I'm going to get even more out of it. In the class, we write, illustrate, and get printed an entire book. That's not too shabby for ten weeks! So far all I have is an idea and some rough layouts. My book will be about what makes a good pet, showing six different children in six different living arrangements, with six different personalities, and what pet is right for them. Hopefully children who read the book will be able to relate to one of the kids and make an appropriate decision in pet adopting! Here's some art from one of my professor's books.

©Allan Drummond "The Willow Pattern Story"

So that sums it about up! Here's some old work, just for kicks.

"Greece" 2009, Gouache

"Jamaica" 2009, Gouache

Off to printmaking I go!