Continuing with this week's inspiration theme, I'm loving this Grunge Brush tutorial from design.tutsplus.com. Grunge brushes are a great way to bring dimension into your CAD art work, creating a more painterly and less "flat" look.
tutsplus.com is a great resource of free tutorials. I've found that there's nothing like a tutorial for revealing the potential in the complicated CAD programs I sometimes simultaneously love and hate.
For sketching I mostly just use loose pieces of computer paper and a pencil on a clipboard. I have a tendency to make the sketches really tiny then fill up all the remaining blank spaces on the page (front and back) with various sketches for other things. The fox and spy dog sketches I’m including were done within a few days of each other so they were on the same piece and side of paper.
When I’m making characters or icons with a theme, I usually have a really strong idea of the design I want to do and sketch all the pieces out at once. When I’m doing botanicals or a geometric based idea, I try to be more free with the shapes and placement while sketching and I will fill up more of the page. There are times when I only have the beginnings of the idea which I take into Illustrator and experiment with. Or I make a design and once it’s in Illustrator I realize I don’t like it as much as I thought I did and then mess around with it there.
I also keep a small notebook in my bag in case I need to write a note or draw a quick shape to remind myself of an idea later, but I don’t do any real sketching in it.
I don’t use any of my actual sketches in my artwork, they’re really just there as a map of what I want to do and to make sure I know exactly how I plan to draw a certain object. After I sketch on paper, I re-draw everything in Illustrator using a Wacom tablet. It’s actually a lot quicker for me to just re-draw something than to scan and trace. I’ve also created a custom set of brushes based on my hand done drawings that help expedite this process.
Once I have my shapes I smooth out the edges, adjust anchor points, and pick a color palette. Sometimes the color palette is a bigger inspiration for the direction of what I’m doing and I will pick that out before I even start sketching. After the drawing is done and the colors are set in Illustrator, I move everything over to Photoshop and start painting to add texture and shading (also done with custom brushes) . I sometimes change the colors once I’m in Photoshop but I try to get that part out of the way in Illustrator. The painting step isn’t always necessary since my drawings could be considered finished in Illustrator, but I like the dimension a painted texture can add.
I do occasionally paint with watercolors or use Faber Castel markers but I almost never use any of these scans in my finished work. At least not at the moment anyway. They’re usually just for fun or sketching purposes.
Are you bringing your "problem children" to the meeting tonight? Learning from each other is one of the best features and benefits of belonging to the Guild!
THIS JUST ADDED: Do you have an Illustrator or Photoshop problem that you need help with? Bring your file on a laptop or thumb drive, and we'll have an impromptu peer-to-peer problem solving session!
Our next meeting features guest speaker Brennan Mulligan of Skyou. Brennan is the first of many awesome speakers we are bringing to the guild from Surtex. He instantly stood out in the crowd because he was wearing an amazing tee-shirt. Turns out that tee was a product from SILO, the e-commerce platform powered by Skyou's on-demand technology. The evening's presentation will feature products designed by our very own Jenny Thayer. Stay tuned for more!
What is your background as an artist? What led you to hand-printed design?
My mom is an art teacher. She taught my sisters and me to work with all sorts of media. She showed us that the process is the joy and not to worry about the final result. I took my first printmaking class at the Kansas City Art Institute when I was in high school. I later went to the Corcoran School of Art and Design to study fine art.
What was your mission in creating Yellow Owl Workshop?
Both with my books and my goods, my mission is to put creative options in the hands of others. I get a kick when people that don't normally make prints or have the confidence to just play with techniques write me to tell me how much they enjoyed my products to create pieces of their own.
Covering walls and upholstered furniture with bold geometrics, beautiful birds, and flamboyant florals, her work has stood the test of time. Florence Broadhurst’s designs are again in the public eye, this time licensed by Kate Spade, who has applied them to everything from shoes, tableware, playing cards and Vespa scooters. It goes to show that classic designs can make anything more beautiful.
Our May 15th meeting is Thursday! You still have time to create something for the design challenge!
What it's all about:
If you recall, the challenge was to begin with the black and white image above, come up with a second image, and make a design inspired by both. Please bring your second inspiration image, and least one original design inspired by both to the meeting. You can pick the color palette, motifs, size, end use, etc. Add a large dash of "experience, serendipity, inspiration and style."
Don't be shy!
This is a wonderful opportunity to share your work within a supportive environment of peers. And, even if you aren't able to come up with a design in time for the meeting you are still welcome to attend.
Long-distance members, here's how you can participate:
We will be setting up a Pinterest board for our May Design Challenge. Any member who has a design completed for the challenge is welcome to have it added to our board. So even if you can't attend the meeting in person, this is a great way to share your work!
AND there's a fabric swap too!
If you have questions or want to know more info about our Pinterest boards please email us. We can't wait to see what you all come up with!