17 November 2009

Realistic Water Bottle

I just completed this. I thought it was so good that I would put it up now.

There was no drawing involved in this. Just making shapes and gradients. I didn't even start with any kind of sketch, I just looked at my water bottle, and build this.

Illustrator is an amazing program because I can do stuff that's very fun and cartoony, but it's also a great tool for creating hyper-realistic images. I could use a 3d program, but I think this way gives it a nice illustrated feel to it, and plus this was an assignment for my Illustrator class.

12 November 2009

Muscley Men and Cute Disney

I have some new stuff to show you today.

First though, I would like to take this opportunity to let you in on some news.

The play "See How They Run" will being playing at the West Campus until Sunday. As you know, I did the poster design for that, so I gotta spread the love.

The West Campus will also have a Student Show that will be opening next Wednesday and it will be open for two months. I have a couple pieces in it, all of which have been posted on the blog. Though, these pieces are HUGE PRINTS; Probably about 50 times larger if not more, than the images you have seen on the screen.
So if you can, please go check it out, there are some great pieces going in the show. And I have to say that the people producing the show, and printing the pieces, and getting them hung have been working really hard for all us students. They are the real heroes here.

Molly and Carl got married, as if you didn't know. Congrats to them for being awesome and having an awesome wedding.

Also, all my dreams have come true and I now have a felt squid, thanks to Jess Bates. You should go see it, she has pictures.

Now, let's get on with the artwork. YAY!

Nico had a little rant about movie posters, which was so totally true and sad.
I had to do a movie poster for my Illustrator class, definitely made me feel like movie posters should be illustrated, not boring photos of the big celebrities that play in them.

Inglourious Basterds, one of the best movies I've seen this year. It had on-the-edge-of-your seat intensity and it was full of the lulz. Though, slightly historically inaccurate.

Yeah, it was totally not my usually style, I usually don't draw anything that includes muscles, baseball bats, blood, and swastikas. So this piece was pretty fun because I got to practice outside my comfort zone. I could have pushed it further though and made it darker and grittier.

But, you know, I love my cute and adorable illustrations, so after many sketches of big muscley men, and manly gruff stuff, I went back to practicing some Disney-looking styles.

This is me, Disnified.

One of my first attempts to emulate more of a Disney style, because people keep saying my work looks like anime. It probably does, because I've been doing that style since I was 13, that was how I learned. But I want to break out of that and make my work to go beyond the typical, "Eh, I like anime, look at me, I can draw anime, OOO! Look the huge eyes and back-breaking huge breasts. See how I draw anime. I'm going to be a Manga-ka in Japan some day. huk-huk."

Anyway, I just want to keep working on learning different styles and practice different techniques because they all are so fun and different. So I think you will be seeing some more manly muscle men, and cute disney illustrations from me.

I have to get back my reading my Harry Potter, I have to know what that crazy moody teenage wizard is up to next.


P.S. Marc is awesome and great.

01 November 2009



22 September 2009

Vectors are cool and I like them.

I'm starting to get busy with school, but that also means I'm actually starting to get my stuff together and I'm producing more artwork.

As I'm sure you've all noticed, I'm totally into Illustrator right now. It just so happens that I'm in an Illustrator class. So I present to you, my first Illustrator assignment.

Our assignment was to make a face using the pen tool and what have you. Most people traced pictures, but I drew another cute little character.

This one, I took inspiration from vintage style and colors. I really like using limited palettes, the kind you see a lot in vintage colors.

By the way, I did not make that texture in the background, it's one that came with the program.

17 September 2009

3D Under the Sea!

This is my first assignment in my Advanced Photoshop.

While working with the red channel you can offset and inset different parts of a flat image and create the 3D look. You need 3D glasses to look at it correctly though, otherwise it looks weird.

I composited this image with multiple images. I cropped out each fish, and the squids and the foreground coral reef, and pasted them all into the under the sea image.

I don't own any of the images used in this piece.

10 September 2009

Fun playing games!

So, I don't really show any work that I've doing from my Illustration job, and since I've been busy with school starting up, I thought I would show you all a sample of some games that I did.

These games were for a Charter High School, and it was a lot of fun because I got to design a lot of the stuff based on what their school looked like, so it's really unique to this school.

Go here to play the games, (they're pretty easy) : School Games!

A while ago I also did a game for Pima Public Library. These games are isometric and pixel based. This was the first time I really worked with that kind of artwork, it's very technical. I feel I could have done better but I'll show it to you anyway.

Keep in mind, this game is for little kids: Library Games!

24 August 2009

Pure Imagination

So there I was, listening to Maroon 5's version of "Pure Imagination" from Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory. The one with Gene Wilder, not Johnny Depp. Anyways, I usually don't like when songs are redone by other people, but I really like this one.

I was listening to it, and then it struck again!!

The exact pose and style and colors, they all came to me at once! I sketched it out and brought it into Illustrator. It turned out pretty good I think, but I'm still a novice when it comes to doing drawings in Illustrator. I figured out some techniques and stuff. It really is fun working with vector art, I could work on this piece forever, but it's my birthday and I have other things to do.

"There is no- life I know- that compares to Pure Imagination"

18 August 2009

Alice, falling down the Rabbit hole...

So remember when I said that I was going to draw Alice, from Alice in Wonderland? Well, that's exactly what I did. I didn't know how I was going to do it at first. Was I going to do it like I did Ariel, or what? The other day however, I was awakening from a nice nap, and it suddenly came to me, the exact pose and style and everything. I quickly got up, sketched up my idea and brought it into illustrator. At first it had line work on it, but I decided to be daring and get rid of all my line work.

So it's been decided, I love Vector Illustrations.

29 July 2009

Two pieces not realated to each other...

Hello again!

So, I've been working on some more personal projects in my spare time and I think it's a good time you show you some.

A little while ago I was having artist's block, so I asked Nico what I should draw. One thing lead to another and we decided that I should draw Disney characters. So here is my Ariel!

I was trying some new coloring techniques and stuff, and wasn't really trying to make it the best thing ever, but it definitely got me out of my funk. I think it does look pretty good though. So now I will be doing a series of Disney characters, and next up is Alice.

Also, I've been doing some more sketches of Coraline ever since it came out, so hopefully I put up another drawing from that.

This other piece I worked on has been on the que for a while. Marc's sister has been wanting me to draw her a sloth drinking tea. I finally did it, and this is what I came up with.

Doing the reference was fun, because sloths look so weird, therefore I had to make him cuter than an actual sloth.

Sloths are cute in their own what-do-you-want-from-me,-I'm-sloth kind of way.

The teapot and table were fun to do as well. This was all done in Illustrator, which I don't usually do, but I will definitely be doing it more, it is quite fun.

11 July 2009

Portraits, Cds and Posters

Hello Everyone,

I know I've been a bad blogger lately. I am sorry. I have no excuse. My days at my computer have been a lot like this: "Hmmm, I should update my blog. I'll see what's on Digg first....(hours go by) Hmmm, now what's on Hulu...(more time goes by) Alright, I'm going to bed now, I'll update tomorrow, for sure."

Well, today FOR SURE I am updating. You know I'm telling the truth because you are reading it right now.

It's not even like a don't have a lot to put up here, I do! Here are some of the things I did last semester but haven't put up yet.

Portrait with different Mediums - Dale Messik.

This is Dale Messick, she is one of the first female comic artists from way back in the 1940's. I decided she would be the best for my 'Comic material' portrait.

Materials from the top left: Digital Inking, Pencils, Digital Half-tones, Traditional Inking with a Micron pen, inking with Screen tones, Black Markers, and the gutter was also Micron pens.

Center For the Arts - See How They Run

See How They Run is one of four plays that Pima will be preforming next year. The others were: Ramona Quimbly, Cinderella, and Midsummer's Night Dream. So the digital arts students had the assignment to design the posters for these up coming plays. I was going to do Ramona, but so was a lot of people. I like a challenge, so I did SHTR, along with about 8 other people..

It's a play from the 1940's. (What's with the 40's) It's set in England or whatever, it's a comedy and hilarious British weird stuff happens I guess. It's hard to describe, which is why it was hard to design a poster for this. I was even thinking about not turning it in...

However, it just so happens that it was the chosen piece for this play and anyone who goes to Pima will be seeing this poster around next year. Pretty rad, huh? Yeah I thought so too.

CD Box Set - The Songs of Riverdance

So this was my last assignment last semester, I had 4 weeks to do it, and I did it in one day. It included 1 Cd Box with a dieline, 3 Cd sleeves, 3 Cds, and 1 booklet. And I had to print and assemble them all.

Speaking of CDs. I just finished my first real Cd art cover for a real band. My Co-worker and friend, Mik asked my to do it, and it took me forever, but here it is, the Artwork for The Infernal Racket. Go have a listen, they are pretty funky, and usually play gigs around Tucson.

On one last note, I would like to welcome my friend Libby to Blogger. she just posted her first blog, a wonderful rant about Twilight.

I hope you enjoyed this installment, see you soon.

29 May 2009

A Robot in Space

This video was my last assignment in my Painter class. I had no idea where it was going until I took it there. This was all drawn in Painter with my Wacom Tablet. It is only about a minute but it took ab0ut 4 weeks to do.

So, there it is.

This has been a short post for today. I'll see you next time.

16 May 2009

Digital Art Step by Step....kinda

School's out for SUMMER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I hope you know what this means blogger buddies!!!!!

It means I finally have time to do stuff, like sleep in, drink lemonade, go to the beach, work more hours, and ....hmmm.... how about UPDATE MY BLOG!!!!!

I've got a great update for you today, folks. Something really spectacular! It's a piece I've been working on in my spare time for about a almost a year now. It didn't take a year to do, but it took a year to get the time to work on it. Are you ready to see it? Huh? Huh? OK, here it is!

This is my Geisha Piece, (for lack of a better name) and even though it was a personal project, I got school credit for it, because I turned it in as an assignment.

This image I uploaded doesn't even do it justice, there are so many little details in this piece. Its size was 8.5in by 11in. which doesn't seem like a lot, but I put the resolution at 300 dpi so I could make it bigger if I wanted.

I learned a lot working on this piece, a lot about texturing and and lot about details, and a think I definitely got better at color.

Want to know my secrets????
Ok, I will show you the steps it took me to make this piece.

For all of you digital artists out there, or any artist, I think some of these steps could be useful to you, or at least interesting. So let's be begin at the beginning!!!

Step 1: Sketching your idea

I was just aimlessly sketching in Photoshop, and I came up with the shape of her head. The posture seemed really elegant to me so I went with it. I continued with sketching the Kimonos and the hair. I did the rough placement and ideas for the hair pieces in a different color so that I would be able to keep it from getting lost in the black lines I had already laid down.

(This is my first piece that began with a digital sketch)

Quick Tip: Sketching is very important to drawing, it is the foundation of your composition. Keep your sketches quick and loose and don't worry about fixing any imperfections. This stage is just to lay out your idea.

Step 2: Color Break

I was messing with how I was going to color this geisha. I decided with a warm Autumn palette. I thought the idea was neat, because a Spring palette is usually used on geisha, with cherry blossoms and all that good stuff, but Autumn has much more interesting colors.

Quick Tip: A color break doesn't have to always be the 2nd step, you can do it any time before doing the actual coloring. I put it at #2 because this is still just an idea forming process. It's basically laying out color ideas. This is very useful for making sure there is good contrast and that the saturation and tones and all those color terms are looking groovy together. It's better to do a few color breaks, because even if your first one looks good, if you tweak the colors, they can look even better. I have examples of some other color breaks on one of my earlier posts.

Step3: Rough Line Art

This is where I started laying out the line details. Since the hair ornaments are going to be on separate layers, I'm not going to worry about those right now. This is in blue so that I can see it over my black sketch.

Quick Tip: This stage is very important to my work, but not everybody needs to do this if their initial sketch is good enough to go straight to the finished line work. My work is very sketchy, so sometimes I have to do this step a couple of times to get it tighter so that I can make sure that when I go to do my finished line work, there isn't any need to worry about making any mistakes with the form, (this is especially true if you are using an actual pen that isn't so easy to erase).

Step 4: Finished Line Art

This is one of the best line art I've ever done. I think a lot of it was luck, and not thinking about it too much, just going with the flow of my pen. Like I said before I was just aimlessly sketching so I wasn't too invested into this piece at the time. I was just having fun with it. I think that's what helped.

Quick Tip: Line work is one of the hardest things for me to do well. It is something that I'm still practicing, but I think I'm getting better at it.

I know a thing or two about line work though. For one thing, you should keep your line at different lengths. For example, the strands of her hair are very light, as is her face outline, these things are very delicate, kimonos always looked very heavy to me so I made those lines really bold. I also make the outline of the hair very thick because the shape of the hair seems very dramatic to me.

There is a lot more I could talk about line work, that isn't really shown in this piece, so maybe I'll talk about it in another post. I could write many posts about line work. It's kinda a BIG thing.

Step 5: Reference for Hair Ornaments

So I decided I wanted this piece to be authentic to what a real geisha would wear and look like. To do this I did a google image search of what I was looking for. I looked for hair pieces, and hair styles and make-up. Basically I looked up every thing that makes a geisha a geisha. From these pictures, I created my own look of all these pieces.

Quick Tip: Looking for references can be a pain and lots of people don't do it. But it is very important if you want your work taken seriously.

How can you draw a picture of a landscape if you don't study how that land is formed?
How can you draw a body if you don't study the muscles and skeleton?
You can try, but it won't be as good if you don't get a reference.

Reference can come from anything: photos, still life, or anything. Photos you take yourself are the best because then you can work at getting the exact image. One thing I do want to say about reference is that you should not trace your photo references. The reference should be to give you the idea of what you were trying to draw. Once you have that, put your own spin on the drawing and make it your own. Plus tracing exact compositions, and structures could probably get you in trouble on copyright laws (if using photos that aren't yours).

So I used my references of the hair ornaments and did the line work for the kind of pieces I wanted. They are each on their own layer to help separate them to make them easier to work with.

Then I put the face in. Not to much to say about that. The face layout was composed with the sketches, but I put the finished lines last because I wanted to focus on the details of the hair pieces.

More about Reference:

So I did another hair ornament that had a lot of detail. So I found a very specific reference for this.

I drew about 1 or 2 flowers and repeated them because they had the same structure, and there were so many of them. I re-sized them where needed and redrew some other flowers.

Here is a close-up of the line work of this ornament. (Click it, it will be bigger)

Here it is in place.

Step 6: Base Colors

So I put down the base colors. Since I have a rough idea, it doesn't take me that long to decide on the exact color. Each section is its own layer.

Quick Tip: I color the base colors like it's a coloring book, I just make sure that I'm on a new layer for each section. I color outside the lines, and then when the area is finished, I go back and erase all the extra color. Once that is done, I put the layer on what is called a "transparency lock" which means that I can later put down shading and lighting without having to worry about going outside the area that has no color.

Please note, that I have many layers at this point now so they are all named. Not naming your layers will cause you a headache.

Step 7: Lighting and Shading /Finished Coloring

So here comes the fun part. This only shows the skin, the hair and the sakura ornament. Notice the other details that I added while doing the shading: I put a skin tone by the hair line, and the back of the neck, and around the chest. This is how geisha make-up is, they deliberately leave areas like this without make-up. Do you know how I know this? Research and reference!!! Also I made the hair purple, because I only use black with my lineart. Black is not in my coloring palette, ever! Black is too flat, dark and heavy, it is not as rich as deep colors like dark Red, dark Blue and especially dark Purple, which work really well for things that would usually be black.

Quick Tip: For rich shading and lighting, don't just use a darker or lighter color of the base color. For shading, make the color darker, but then add a little bit of the color next to it on the color wheel. For lighting, make it lighter and also add a little bit from the other color next to it. I'm sure this doesn't make since so I'll give you an example:

The base color of the hair is purple, so I added a dark blue to the purple for the shading.
I added just a little bit of red to the highlights. For the really bright highlight I move it more to yellow, since yellow is a nice addition to highlights of every color.

Another example. If you have Green, make the shading more blue and the lighting more yellow.

I could go on, because it's not as simple as that, since the way you color things determines how the texture of that object appears. But that is for another post.

Here is some more coloring and shading, notice that each piece of coloring helps enhance the way you perceive texture.

Here is a close up of the flower ornament. Notice that the base color was yellow, but I added a bunch of different colors to make it more rich. Thanks to my reference, I've learned how to do some subtle color variations in my fabrics.

Some more close-ups. Notice the textures. What material do you think each piece looks like?
Does the hair look like hair? Does the sakura ornament look like glass or metal?
What about the fan or the marbles? Does the cloth in the bun look like cloth?

Also think about why they look that way, look at how the color helps make the connection.

Here is the soft skin. Isn't it pretty? The whites of the eyes are not exactly white, they are off-white. Could you imagine if our eyes were pure white. Creepy. This also helps emphasize that her make-up is very white.

Step 8: Texture

So I talked a lot about using color to create texture, but color can only go so far. That is where actual textures comes in. For this piece, I used mostly fabric textures, because I can't recreate them with brushes.

Using textures is a little more complicated to explain actually, and I'm not sure if I should explain it all here, since this is already becoming quite a long post. Instead I'll just give you a quick tip.

Quick Tip: A lot of textures I use come from photos. It is a good idea to take pictures yourself and create a texture library. Textures can also be made by making custom brushes in Photoshop. The more textures you create yourself, the more your work will be completely yours.

If enough people are interested, I might do a post on working with textures, so let me know.

Look at how pretty the kimonos came out. How nice.

Step 9: Finishing Touches / Critiques

Here it is. FINISHED. I tweaked the colors a little more, and made stronger highlights where needed. There were still a few things I couldn't quite put my finger on, so I had some people critique it for me. Here were the kind of suggestions I got.

"The skin is too purple" -Real life Creative Director

"Make the lines on the flower ornament thicker." -Classmate

"Make the fan look more like it fits into the hair." -Same classmate

"Add an amazing background." -Chapo

So I did all that. The last one though, I'll probably be working on this summer.

Yeah, I'm not done with this piece quite yet. ha Ha!

Quick Tip: Critiques are important, but don't ask for them from someone who won't be honest with you. Your work isn't perfect, it'll never be perfect, there will usually be something to improve, it just depends how far you want to take it.
Critiques are one of the best things to help you improve, because more often than not, people do stuff wrong because they are unaware that they are doing it wrong. So find someone who will point out the stuff you do right, but also the stuff that you do wrong.

Finally Step 10: PRINTING

Thanks to Chapo, who works at Pima's Service Bureau, I was able to print my art really big!

Quick Tip: Production and printing is the most technical of all steps, I'm not even going to go into because it is very boring. But if you are serious about being a digital artist, you would do good to learn your production! If you ever get into the business of digital art, you will more than likely work with production at some point. If anything, knowing how to set up a piece for print will make whoever does your printing very happy.

People that don't know how to set up their prints are the lamest of lame.

So I hope you all learned a thing or two about what it takes to do a digital illustration, or at least have a new appreciation for everything that goes into doing my little doodles.

I did a lot of work this semester, so I will have a lot more updates, please stop by again soon and check it out.


28 February 2009

"You know I love you...Coraline."

Ok, so over at Nico's blog was some of his fan art for Coraline. It was a great movie, with awesome scenes and characters. However, I have read the book, and what made the book inevitably better was the imagery. Especially of the Other Mother. I decided to let you all know what the Other Mother looked like in my head. Perhaps then, you will all see why I had to finish the book the night I started reading it. I was too creeped out, to just go to sleep.

First some sketches of her face.

I had a hard time deciding what expression she should have on her face.
Here is what I decided to choose between:

I chose the last one, because it creeped me out the most, with the pose that she has.

Here is the finished line work:

And now, the finished colored image!!
I used lots of different texture brushes and a floral pattern to give her that motherly look.

"You know I love you, Coraline."

Well, until next time blog buddies. Have a good week, I'll be back with some more school work, YAY!

08 February 2009

In with the new...and the old.

Here I am updating again. I've been pretty busy with a lot of work, both for school and my job. Most of which I can't show right now, because I want to wait until they are finished. However, while I am working on these new projects, I thought you all might enjoy some of my work that is complete.

I figure, I can show all the projects that never got posted, even though they are years old. It is new to all of you that haven't seen them anyway.

Okay, so here it goes, I'll start with the most recent and go back in time.

Here is my latest finished piece for my Illustration class. It is two opposite emotions. I choose Laughter and Crying, you know, like Comedy and Tragedy of the theater. As you can see, I have been working in a boxy vector style. This year is all about getting better at vector. This piece is really not like me because my style is very fluid and organic, and more often than not I work traditionally. Well, I did not draw this piece at all.

I'll explain what I mean. I did draw the sketches, to get the ideas together. I hate scanning so I won't post my sketches. I used Illustrator and the pen tool, that was pretty much it. I only connected lines together, no drawing.

This piece was done in...I wanna say 2007...and I don't think the star model has even seen it. So this is for you Molly.

It is an ad for the best thing EVER!!! It is so good and tasty, they don't even have to pay me to get people to try it. GO TRY IT ALREADY!!!!

Anyway, thanks to Molly and Brailey (who was the photographer) for letting me make this ad completely from scratch. Most people took their photos from the internet for this assignment. The photo, the lighting, even the picture of the container was all done with my planning, and it is still one of my favorite pieces. Even though I shouldn't have centered the type.

This piece was done I think in 2006, for my Graphic Design class. We had to take a local company and redesign their logo. I went for the challenge of bringing medieval and limos together.

I thought it was quite successful and it is one of my favorite logo's I have designed. I had a lot of fun with it too. Maybe I should sell it to them, do you think they would use it?

This one is from Graphic Design as well. We had to make a poster for a location to go to. We were in groups and ours picked Wonderland. This is just the illustration, and it was my first photoshop painting without line art.

Some details you should pay attention to are the roses painted red, and the hedgehog ball in her hand. I think those turned out really cool but they are pretty small details. Oh well, that is what you get for zooming in so much and spending so much time on a tiny thing and not realizing it is going to be so tiny.

So that's it for now. I will see you next time with some new stuff, if not, some old stuff that is new to you.

10 January 2009

Seven Deadly Sins...Wedding!

So one assignment of mine was to draw characters for the seven deadly sins. I wanted to make them women because I was the only girl in my class, so I figured that no one else would have a female character. Well, I began to think what type of woman commits the sin of Pride...of course, a bride would. The wedding is all about her...who is the center of attention at a wedding anyway, the bride. From there I just went with it.

Therefore, I present to you the Seven Deadly Sins...Wedding!! Enjoy!

This last one I colored as you can see. This is the Best Man, Sloth!!!

See you next time!