Wow. Look! Drawer-ings! Will wonders never cease? I know, I know… it’s been awhile since I posted any of my artwork and even longer since I updated my on-line portfolio (eek… gotta get on that!). Mostly because my plate has been full of design work so far this year. But now most of that is behind me and I’m switching gears again, focusing on illustration. The comic book I started last year for Scouts Canada is on my drawing board again, nearing completion. I’ll be posting lots about that soon.
But even when I’m occupied work-wise with design, I’m drawing all the time. Mostly doodles on Post-its and receipts and the backs of magazines, but sometimes I actually manage to get some into a real honest-to-boots sketchbook. The sketches above are from last month. ‘Course, they weren’t all on one page… I like to draw big and I absolutely abhorr the feeling of my hand falling off the edge of page, so I can rarely fit more than two images on the same page. Which is sad, really, because I love that crammed full look. And I have major moleskine envy, but they just don’t make ‘em big enough for me.
A couple weeks ago as I was doodling while we were watching teevee, Johnny HusbandlyGuy asked me if I know what I’m going to draw before I sit down for one of my sketching sessions and it took me awhile to come up with the answer to that. The answer is yes and no. Most of the time, I think I have a vague idea of something I need to work out creatively. Usually this has to do with perspective or some kind of anatomy issue. For instance, I sometimes have problems visualizing exactly how the head connects to the neck and shoulders, especially in profile or 3/4’s view. And since I rarely use reference when I’m drawing people or animals, this is something I work on quite a bit, consciously or unconsciously. I draw figures in that attitude over and over again, till I have the proportions correct and things fit fairly comfortably. It’s kind of like muscle memory, I guess. I sort of drill myself regularly to overcome certain issues with postures and attitudes and perspective I have, to figure out how it all goes together so that when I have to use those skills in a particular setting, I don’t have to go hunt for photo reference showing that exact position.
But it’s not really a concerted effort, you know? Mostly, it’s just whatever leaks out of my head and out my fingertips. That’s what sketchbooks are for, I think. Just goofing around. Working out the knots. Playing with line quality and expression and different styles.
Anyhoo… it’s no accident that I’m suddenly all about the illustration today. I have the great pleasure of announcing that I am an official contributor to the brand spanking new Illustration Friday Blog where I will be regularly posting sparkling bits of illustrative inspiration collect on my sweeping marches over the internet.
My fellow contributors include Penelope Dullaghan and Brianna Privett, the spectacular women behind the whole of Illustration Friday, and the terrifically talented Josh Sears, Kate Hamilton, Rama Hughes, plus fellow Canadians (and artistic wonders) Steve Mack and Amanda Woodward. Good company to be in, let me assure you!
Today is the official launch, so set your bookmarks and be sure to check regularly! And feel free to comment and suggest any sites or inspirational bits you feel deserve wider attention and recognition.
Ooooo, I’m really really excited about all of this!