Tuesday, 30 June 2009

Some previous illustration projects featuring dogs

"Talk to your Dog" by Susie Green
I loved working on this project and how it was possible to mix up quite dog-like drawings of dogs with others that were very anthropomorphic. The dog in the egg chair is drinking whiskey and ginger beer.

This was commissioned by a friend who was designing a brochure for the Bite Theatre Season at the Barbican in London. The illustration was to tie in with a circus event in a giant tent in Victoria Park. However the budget was really tight so David persauded me to do it by offering the possibility of drawing dogs rather than people on the trapeze!

I'd forgotten about these and can't remember the name of the book. Just a little step by step on how to wash a dog.

This was for a Barnes and Noble day by day calendar for 2007. The project involved drawing 365 illustrations to go with a quote for each day of the year. This one was, "Being followed by a strange dog is generally considered to be lucky...."

Sunday, 28 June 2009

Organic Pet Food Illustration

This was for the May issue of the Canadian based magazine Best Health for a piece about organic pet food and whether dogs can tell the difference.

The top one was the final artwork and below it is one of the roughs.

I often try to slip a dog into my illustrations whenever possible/appropriate but it's even better when I'm specifically commissioned to draw them!

Monday, 22 June 2009

Sketches from Summers Past

I realised at the weekend that for the past three summers I've been on holiday abroad on this week of the year. This prompted me to get out my sketch books from these holidays - and have a mini 'memory holiday' at my desk! Below are some drawings from those trips.

2006: Ferry between Skiathos, Skopelos and Alonissos

An isolated rocky beach on Skopelos

2007 Sketches from the train window on The Golden Pass journey between Montreux and Zweisimmen. As the train climbed the mountain leaving Montreux a woman waved to us as she lay cosy under blankets on her patio. It gave me that lovely feeling children get when a train driver waves or toots his horn!

The cable car down from the Shilthorn and Piz Gloria (the lookout tower where James Bond stays in "On Her Majesty's Secret Service"). It wasn't as exciting as his visit - I just drew, took some photographs, played with the snow that was still up in the mountains, watched a fox and had a hot chocolate in the revolving cafe.

Bears kept in a pit in Berne. This was incedibly distressing to see. I found it hard to believe animals were being kept this way in Switzerland in 2007. There was talk of rehoming them - it couldn't happen soon enough.

Lake Annecy in France

2008 A restaurant in the Tramuntana Mountains in Mallorca
It was set high up in the woods - an old farmhouse I think. It was an incredibly hot day and we swam in the swimming pool before lunch which had a waterfall flowing in to it - mountain water - it was freezing!

Tuesday, 16 June 2009

Cardboard Printing for Feng Shui Book

This project was fun as I had the oppportunity to work in a slightly different way from usual. When I went in to discuss the book - Cindy the publisher at Cico Books asked if I could do something in a linocut type style. By complete chance just a few weeks before I had done a one day Cardboard Printing workshop at the Curwen Print Studio near Cambridge. It was taught by the artist / illustrator Chloe Cheese and she showed us the technique that her mother Sheila Robinson also an illustrator / artist had developed in the 50s and 60s. She showed as some of her mother's prints and also the cut cardboard. They were amazing - so detailed and controlled and textured - just cut from cardboard.
Mine are totally crude in comparison - just cut shapes - but it gave me the idea to get the feel of a linocut printed background - without lino!

Below is one of the prints I did at the workshop. One of the things I most loved about the day (as well as the whole having a day a way from "real" work, a train journey through the bleak March Cambridgeshire countryside, spending time with my friend Jacqui (http://www.centralillustration.com/jm/jm.php), eating our sandwiches around the big table in the print room, chatting while we cut our card, printing..the train journey home...) was seeing how differently everyone had responded to and treated the cardboard.

Not very successfully printed - I know lots of women would like a permanently on call hairdresser or chef, I would like an on call print technician!

Monday, 15 June 2009

Two Book Covers - I love these colours together!

I did these two covers several months apart but when I placed them together to photograph I noticed it one of my favourite colour combinations. Pink, Mustard and Chocolate. When I was a teenager I had this old fashioned wool floral carpet on my bedroom floor (until one day against my parents permission I ripped it up and varnished the floor boards instead). But I remember there was a small element of the floral repeat I used to really enjoy kneeling on my carpet and gazing at - and it was these three colours.

Thursday, 11 June 2009

Step by Step Illustrations for two New Craft Books

Last week I received copies of some books I illustrated last year, including two craft based books: The Perfect Apron by Rob Merrett and Decorating Pumpkins and Gourds by Deborah Schneebeli Morrell.

I think if I'd been told when a student that in the future I'd be working on illustrating step - by - step projects I'd have thought "how dull!" However I find something really enjoyable about doing these - the need to find solutions to explain the information and yet not make it look too "technical". I also like the way that there are usually quite a lot of illustrations and so it's sometimes possible to work in a way that feels like a cross between a production line and a meditative flow!

Both these books have such gorgeous projects in them, though it can be frustrating to just be drawing them rather than be making the real thing!

Wednesday, 10 June 2009

Ceramics - Scraffito Work

These are some pieces I've made over the winter at a ceramic evening class at City and Islington College at Finsbury Park (fantastic facilities and wonderful tutors). It's taken me eighteen years in London to finally get around to attending a class (every year I would think about it and end up doing something else!) I'm really glad I finally did as it seems I may be moving out of London - I just hope I can find a class or workshop or somewhere to fire and glaze my work wherever we go to live. As I'd love to add to this scraffito set that is based on dogs and dog related families.

The top one is based on a film I saw on youtube. CCTV in Chile filmed a dog knocked down on a motorway and his dog companion wrapped his arms around his neck and dragged him across three lanes of fast moving traffic to safety.

The wolves I sketched while watching a nature programme. On Saturday night I saw a family of foxes - two adults and three cubs - playing in our garden. I would like them to be the next plate.

I will post images of more ceramic work soon - before they get too broken or chipped!

Monday, 1 June 2009

Boston Globe - Lola Magazine Illustration

This was for a piece in the May issue of Lola, a monthly magazine given out by the Boston Globe. The article was written from the perspective of a freelance writer whose artist husband had been out of work for a while but she didn't feel able to ask him to give the extra help and support she needed with the home and childcare whilst she juggled supporting the family.

I always love to see other artists' and illustrators' roughs and preliminary work. So below I've posted two of my roughs. Both of these focussed on the final happy resolution with her partner and the editorial department wished to focus more on the prior negative situation - which made sense. But hopefully these two may have another life in a different form in the future!


Related Posts with Thumbnails