June 23, 2011

Illustrating non-naturalistically

I have been thinking recently about getting a different platform to be my corner of the internet. Maybe it's that I want a fresh layout, maybe it's that I feel that what I have to say or share hasn't been particularly suited to this blog for quite a while. So I'm thinking I may retire this blog. But if I do, you'll probably find me somewhere else.

Also: I wish I had the rights to put the image on this post, but ah! this painting is wonderful. I love the sense of life the colors communicate. I want to learn how to work with watercolors like this.

On a related note, I wonder how to make my paintings have a style that isn't intended to be strictly realistic. I want the piece I'm working on to be believable, but I am not looking to imitate the effect of a photograph. Let me show you the draft I made up a few days ago so you can see what I mean. The font and the wing (yes, that's a wing in the corner) have changed a lot, so pay most attention to the style. [Oh yeah, and it's my book cover if you hadn't guessed. ;)]

I want the colors and outlines to stand out, so that the effect of the image is the ideas it represents, not the actual objects. If you're open to giving input. . . right now I'm particularly struggling with the water. The way it is in the draft is very unrealistic. The images I'm finding look much smoother or whiter.

So I'm not sure yet what I'll do. Let me know if you have ideas.


mana said...

Water is really hard to create on paper. I think you need to keep practicing with how the colors mix. Just like in sketching, you need to know and understand the lighting effects. There are areas where it is darkest and lightest, so you must recognize the immediate contrast. If you study the effect of water, you will see that there are shades and hues of blue or white. Nothing is simple. But really, just have fun with it. When you enjoy your work, you'll be able to continue being inspired with what you create, even if it may seem all random. Just be yourself. :P

P.S. I'll send you a picture of something I recently created. There is water in the picture too. :D Instead of using water colors, however, I used mainly pastels (which were the only thing I had around in my house that I like to use). Good luck with yours!