Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Alphabet of Thorn

I started this as a digital piece way back in January 2011.  (Has it really been 3 years already?  Really?)  I've been meaning to do some illustrations in coloured pencil and this seemed like a good candidate, since it had a simple design and the digital piece wasn't going anywhere.

Here is the last WIP of it I posted to this blog.

So this version has a few problems with it, but I like it quite a bit better than the digital.  The face turned out much better.  I'm not entirely sure about the texture.  I've been looking at the famous Drew Strouzan's work and wondering if I should experiment with pencil crayon over watercolour.  Apparently he used an airbrush with acrylics, but there's no way I am going to buy an airbrush.  But it seems to me that you could do something interesting and similar with watercolour.

Anyway, my plan is to do a collection of illustrations in pencil crayon.  Except that I am going to have to buy more pencil crayons because this drawing (painting?  This week someone said that people refer to pencil crayon works as "paintings" which I find very odd) has used up a good chunk of my frequently-used colours.  Now that I am replacing my Prismacolors with Polychromo pencil crayons I'm going to have a devil of a time matching the colours.  Apparently charts exist, but you have to pay for some of them.  Which means that I will be making my own (rather incomplete) charts.

Back to this picture.  It is loosely based on the fantasy book "The Alphabet of Thorn" by Patricia McKillip, which is not a children's book but it is a book I would have happily read as a teenager had I been one in 2004.  Right now I am trying to decide what book to do next.  Today I am leaning towards Bunnicula, but I may tackle something I haven't read before.

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