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Archive for the ‘technique’ Category

Build a Freelance Illustration Business with This 3-Day Workshop

Thomas James

Thomas James

Thomas James is an Illustrator who has worked with The New York Times, WIRED, Pentagram, Wall Street Journal, The Los Angeles Times, and many others. You can see his portfolio at thomasjamesillustration.com.
Thomas James

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Are you a designer, illustrator or creative doodler? Have you ever wondered how you could turn your talents into a business? This three-day workshop will help you create a plan for leveraging your creativity into a successful freelance business.

Run by Sally S. Swindell and Nate Padavick (illustrators and co-founders of They Draw and Cook) this course will give you an inside look at how two artists have built a successful design & illustration studio by fostering a community of artists that empower each other to grow their businesses.

Join Salli and Nate for (3) hour-long sessions to learn how you can leverage community & online content to build a successful freelance business around your creative skills.

Click here for more info >>

 

Posted by Thomas James on 07/01/15 under artists,business,classes,creativity,Events,news,resources,technique,Tools,tutorial / how-to,workshops / conferences
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Make Seamless Patterns Quickly and Easily with Pattern Press

Thomas James

Thomas James

Thomas James is an Illustrator who has worked with The New York Times, WIRED, Pentagram, Wall Street Journal, The Los Angeles Times, and many others. You can see his portfolio at thomasjamesillustration.com.
Thomas James

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Have you ever wanted to make seamless repeating patterns but didn’t know how to or tried and found it too difficult? Well now you can with PatternPress for Photoshop.

PatternPress makes the process of creating seamless patterns easy and also adds a heap of extra touches to make them look even more amazing!Click here to see a great video demo and learn how to get started making quick and easy seamless patterns!

Posted by Thomas James on 06/05/15 under apparel,apparel / products,design,digital,letterpress,pattern,product review,resources,technique,textiles
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Incredibly Useful Digital Watercolour Tools for Illustrators

Thomas James

Thomas James

Thomas James is an Illustrator who has worked with The New York Times, WIRED, Pentagram, Wall Street Journal, The Los Angeles Times, and many others. You can see his portfolio at thomasjamesillustration.com.
Thomas James

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If you’re a digital illustrator seeking a way to make work that looks handmade, you simply MUST check out this huge collection of digital brushes and tools from the great Nicky Laatz!

Equipped with just this pack – you will be an unstoppable watercolour design machine…without even picking up a paint brush :)

Get the pack here!

Posted by Thomas James on 06/03/15 under art supplies,creativity,digital,links,office,painterly,pen/brush and ink,product review,resources,studio life,Stuff,technique,Tools
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Creative ways to think outside the box

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It’s easy to presume that your doodles, illustrations, paintings and creative thoughts should make their way straight to paper or canvas although just for a minute why not think outside the box.  Break the rules and do something creatively different that sets your doodles apart , not to abandon your sketchbook for to long but challenge yourself to something different. To help get you started heres just a few creative ways you can do that and truly think outside the box to show others just how creative you can be.

  • Remember that rather dull phone or tablet case you bought thats lacking a certain creative omph, well grab yourself some paint or a paint based marker and create your own custom case design.  Add your own style and choose your own theme to make a stylish creative case you’d want to show off and not hide.
  • Mugs are great because they often get filled with heart warming teas or beverages although a plain little old mug is some what sad and gloomy. However with some ceramic paint or markers you  could give it an unique handdrawn design of its own that is sure to make your tea breaks even better.
  • For fellow lovers of fabric the dream is no doubt to create your own and you can even without a huge fabric printer. With some acrylic paints and fabric medium you can paint your own designs onto calico, making reams of your own one of a kind design to embellish any type of project from home furnishings to wallart and more.
  • That little pair of converse you happen to have sitting in the hallway could use a splash of ink wouldn’t you say? Grab yourself some pens and markers ( ones that work well on canvas fabric and will not run) and create yourself a fashion piece that will set you apart from everyone else.

Image by artist  Jaco Haasbroek  you can find out more about their work here.

Posted by Kate Leonard on 11/23/14 under creativity,materials,technique
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5 ways to take your sketchbook ideas and turn them into finished pieces

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Last week we were spending a creative sunday discovering ways you can have fun filling the pages of your sketchbook.  No doubt by now those exact same pages are filled with the seeds of a great creative project , now all you have to do is take those initial sketchbook ideas and turn them into something creatively amazing and here’s ways following last week’s post you can do that.

1.  From a continuous fine liner doodle look at what you’ve created. Is there are character or motif on your page that you can trace on layout paper turning it into a developed illustration piece. Could you grow that initial idea; add extra aspects to it that weren’t there before and develop it into something new that might be a great addition to your portfolio.

2.  What was once a spontaneous splash on your page might now be an amazing initial illustration idea all dried up and ready for developing. You might have a series of quirky inky characters, imaginative creatures and more that you can now scan and turn into anything from a surface pattern to a series of illustrative prints.

3. Were you brave enough to rip a hole in your sketchbook page? If you were and grew a little illustration into a bigger one, growing a concept for a story or filling it with typography script, you could now scan and digitally colour your pieces turning them into a book or series of prints for an online shop.

4. If you dabbled in paper collage and created a sketched paper piece, you could take elements from your experimentation that worked and move them further in your project. So for example if a black fine line doodle contrasted better on graph paper collage, then use those elements that work along with your drawing theme of choice to develop further turning initial sketchbook ideas into a series of framed pieces maybe?

5. The last sketchbook filling idea was to find one thing where you were and sketch it in different ways, materials and perspectives on your pages to create a number of motifs. Once you’ve done this you could retrace your sketches onto tracing paper to tidy up the best designs you want to use. Then begin incorporating colour and combine shapes to make new pattern prints that could be for many different things from phone cases to notebook covers, fabric and more.

Image by artist Sarah Ahearn you can find out more about her work here.

Posted by Kate Leonard on 11/09/14 under artists,creativity,technique
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Create Your Own Inspiration Mood Board

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There’s nothing better to get a new creative project started than by making  your own inspirational mood board.  Creating your own mood board of idea’s and inspiration will help you to build a collection of concept base ideas to build a new art piece from whether a series of illustrations, photographs or painting. It’s not all that hard to do and once you get started creating a mood board can actually be a really enjoyable part of project building,  although if you’ve not made one before here are afew easy tips to help you get started on making your own.

What do I put in a mood board?

A mood board can contain anything from doodles, words, photographs, textures , colour swatches, fabrics and much more based around a chosen theme for your project. So for example a theme maybe “ocean” to which you’d include images of its inhabitants , sea blue colour tones and meaningful words tied to the theme etc.

What do I need to make one ? 

Its really down to personal preference but you can make a mood board easily in anything from the pages in your sketchbook, sticking them to a piece of artboard or a cork board with pins. There’s really no right or wrong way because your mood board is personal, there to give you idea’s and pull together concepts for your project that will help it grow.

Putting a mood board together.

  1. To begin putting your creative mood board together collect a series of images and inspirational materials linked to your chosen theme.
  2. On an a3 blank sketchbook page ( or any page size of your preference but bigger is less limiting to your mood board ideas) begin to add your mood board research to your page.
  3. Stick bits down with patterned washi tape or masking tape to make it more visual and allow you to change things around.
  4. Make it personal and have fun.
  5. Keep your creative mood board  in sight throughout your project to stay visually inspired and consistant to your project theme to prevent getting creatively lost along the way.

Image by  illustrator Katt Frank  you can find out more about their work here .

Posted by Kate Leonard on 10/05/14 under creativity,technique,tutorial / how-to
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“Designy Illustrator” Mikey Burton

Rachel Frankel

Rachel is an Oakland-based illustrator and hand-letterer with a love of animals, literature, The National, food, and the Pacific Northwest. She works primarily in graphite, gouache, micron pens, and watercolor. She received a degree in Painting & Drawing and a minor in English & American Literature from San Francisco State University in 2011, and has been working towards a career in illustration ever since. She also plays guitar and sings for the band Phosphene.

Latest posts by Rachel Frankel (see all)

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Self-described “designy illustrator” Mikey Burton is a Philadelphia-based creative with a serious bear preoccupation. His professional work centers around editorial illustration, infographics, and identity design. He’s also been bestowed with awards from ADC Young Guns, Communication Arts, & Graphis, some of the most prestigious organizations in the industry, and has worked with clients like The Atlantic, Converse, Facebook, Fast Company, and Wilco. Mikey values simplicity in principles of color and design, using minimalism and traditionally-inspired typography to an effective advantage. The understated elegance of his work is what secured his spot in the Art Crush Friday Hall of Fame.

Mikey’s aesthetic is identified in the intersection between sharp, geometric vector designs and substantial, meaningful textures. I use the word meaningful not to be an art school asshole, but to say that the textures have strong purpose and intent in his work.

As I’ve learned more and more about graphic design, I’ve started to see the fork in the road that exists between flat and realistic design (this gorgeous Webby-winning site explains this very conundrum in further detail). As I mentioned earlier, Mikey’s process allows real textures to shine through flat shapes, seemingly creating atmospheres within the simplest of flattened shapes. Interestingly enough, he’s referenced his really old HP LaserJet printer as being the very tool that creates these fascinating textures. [More about his process here.]

Mikey swears by two things in particular before starting his design process: coffee and preliminary sketching. He’s a refreshingly real person who needs to participate in real humany things before dragging along on the computer for hours on end. He will routinely post final work to his Dribbble account, modestly seeking feedback from the peers he so deeply respects. I admire his humility, honesty and continual hustle for meaningful work, even amidst his great successes thus far. For budding designers, here’s some of Mikey’s advice: create work that you want to be hired to do, and don’t be a lame person to deal with.

Follow along with Mikey and his adventures to come:

Website

Dribble

Instagram

Twitter

 

Posted by Rachel Frankel on 08/24/14 under artists,conceptual,design,digital,freelance,technique,typography
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Illustrator and Hand-Letterer: Mary Kate McDevitt

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Rachel Frankel

Rachel is an Oakland-based illustrator and hand-letterer with a love of animals, literature, The National, food, and the Pacific Northwest. She works primarily in graphite, gouache, micron pens, and watercolor. She received a degree in Painting & Drawing and a minor in English & American Literature from San Francisco State University in 2011, and has been working towards a career in illustration ever since. She also plays guitar and sings for the band Phosphene.

Latest posts by Rachel Frankel (see all)

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Mary Kate McDevitt is one of the most successful hand-letterers and illustrators working today. A graduate of Tyler School of Art, Mary went on to work at a design studio in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. After 2 years, she moved out west to pursue a freelance illustration and design career in Portland, Oregon before ultimately settling in Brooklyn, New York, which is where she presently resides. While she previously imagined that she would work as an illustrator, dabbling in some lettering on the side–but it turned out to be quite the opposite. Her ever-growing client list includes Chronicle Books, CMYK Magazine, Fast Company, and the United States Postal Service.

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She is specifically inspired by vintage type and techniques, including the ones of her own family. As a teenager, she discovered a plethora of handwritten letters that her mother and aunt wrote to her grandmother during college. She used this inspiration for her Your Handwritten Letters project, a daily hand-lettering exercise. Mary would hand-draw a letter of the alphabet and mail the original to a unique participant each day.

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You can follow along with Mary Kate McDevitt on her websiteblogInstagramDribbble, and can also purchase prints through her Etsy shop. She also has two online classes on Skillshare that can be found here and here

 

 

Posted by Rachel Frankel on 06/20/14 under artists,design,illustrationfriday,Lettering,painterly,pen/brush and ink,technique
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Children’s Book Artist :: Lane Smith is Rather Cheeky

Thomas James

Thomas James

Thomas James is an Illustrator who has worked with The New York Times, WIRED, Pentagram, Wall Street Journal, The Los Angeles Times, and many others. You can see his portfolio at thomasjamesillustration.com.
Thomas James

Post by Angie Brown
Children's Book Artist :: Lane Smith << Illustration Friday

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Children's Book Artist :: Lane Smith << Illustration Friday

Lane Smith is rather cheeky and he doesn’t even try to hide it. It’s kind of his thing. He says: I don’t like ordinary, middle-of-the-road books. I like funny, odd books that excite and challenge a child. There are enough people doing nice books about manners and feelings and magical unicorns. I do not do those kinds of books.” I first found him when I stumbled across his book review blog, Curious Pages: Recommended Inappropriate Books for Children, where he writes rather cheeky reviews of children’s books that are somehow a little “off.” It’s hilariously entertaining.

I was fascinated by the mottled textures in the illustration directly above, from his aptly named “It’s a Book”. Luckily, he’s rather forthcoming in describing how he achieves this effect: he paints hot press illustration board with oil paints and then sprays them with an acrylic spray (water based) while the paints (oil based) are still wet, causing a chemical reaction. Brilliant.

He currently lives with his wife and two cats in Connecticut and New York City. Before he became a children’s book illustrator, he worked as a freelance illustrator for magazines like Time, Sesame Street, Rolling Stone, Ms., Newsweek, Sports Illustrated, The New York Times, Atlantic Monthly, Esquire and many others. He is quite prolific and his titles include It’s a Book; John, Paul, George & Ben; The Stinky Cheese Man; Grandpa Green; and Big Plans.

See more of his work: Blog | Website

Posted by Thomas James on 03/21/13 under Angie,artists,books,children's art,technique
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Rock Artist: Ernestina Gallina

Thomas James

Thomas James

Thomas James is an Illustrator who has worked with The New York Times, WIRED, Pentagram, Wall Street Journal, The Los Angeles Times, and many others. You can see his portfolio at thomasjamesillustration.com.
Thomas James

Ernestina Gallina lives in Cesenatico, Italy, and paints rocks. She’s been doing it because she loves it since 1996. In 1987 she moved to Kenya with her family and stayed in Nairobi for ten years. Life in Africa enabled her to learn the english language and to discover nature and animals.

One day at the library she stumbled upon a book on rock painting and was blown away at the way river stones could be turned into animals. A new, exciting world opened to her, and she started to combine her love for both painting and animals. The results are amazing.

On her website, she offers free PDF tutorials. So you can try some rock painting out for yourself!

View more rock painting inspiration: Website

Posted by Thomas James on 08/23/12 under artists,technique
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