Tag Archives: drawing

The final page

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The final page of a sketchbook is a peculiar geography. It is the end of one continent of ideas and sketches. Familiar paths mapped with notes and drawings and paintings and sketches and receipts from coffee houses and beer coasters from bars and other odd ephemera. Some pages contain recipes and calendar appointments and mailing addresses and other personal notes.

This book spans a decade. And ends with a sketch of a piano and violin concert at the Cathedral of St. John the Evangelist. The first pages is a crude Sharpie® marker sketch of a bus station in North Carolina.

Book cover illustration – update

Fear motivates. The paralyzing fear that if I mess up the coloring of this book cover art, I will have to start the whole process over again. And the completion date is fast approaching. But the task needs to be done. So, onward.

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Watercolor washes begin the color process for the book cover illustration.

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Paint to the edges and then let the colors bleed. The basic color palette had already been determined weeks prior to the final execution of the cover art. But once the water and pigment are activated on the surface of the paper, the color palette organically builds to its own organized spontaneity.

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Details. There are always small details that many casual observers may not detect at first glance. For example, the color for the shotgun shell includes multiple wash layers of different pigments — each layer pulling or pushing color from previous layer.

HardCover

Once the final art is approved, I finished the design with title bar and a map overlay to texture the collage art.

The pleasure of drawing

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Nearly done with the back cover illustration. A brush is often forgotten in the process of keeping a clean drawing surface.

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Detail of the back cover illustration — a catfish. I have to admit — besides the firewheel flower blossom on the front cover — drawing the catfish was a pleasure.

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Front and back cover pen and ink collage drawing completed. Ready for the next phase — watercolor.

The purpose of drawing

The foundation of a great painting is a solid drawing. At least that was my goal when I worked on this book cover illustration for Orison Books. The collage features a firewheel — sometimes called Indian blanket — blossom, shotgun shell and expansive Texas landscape.

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Nearly completed pen and ink work on the cover.

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Detail of the firewheel flower blossom.

 

 

 

The purpose of thumbnail illustration

The purpose of thumbnail sketches is to advance the concept of artist, art director and editor to a final product. It seems like a lot of busy work, but three elements are essential: brainstorming, mind-mapping and closing the gap. The following images illustrate the process of thumbnail sketches as it relates to a book cover illustration. DSCN3558[sqr-tilt] Three thumbnail cover comps presented to the publisher a couple months back. DSCN3560[sqr-tilt] Full-size book cover sketch to gauge color temperature and composition of elements.

Wordshop

Wordshop
The weekly Racine Public Library Wordshop gathering of poets and writers is always lively and engaging. Last week there was a special presentation of Beat literature.

One of the three B’s?

ShostakovichThis morning, kidlinger walks up to my desk while I work, looks at the laptop screen critically and asks: “What’s that?”

Me: “I’m listening to Shostakovich.[1]

Kidlinger: “He’s not one of the three killer B’s.[2]

Me: “True. Would you prefer to listen to Bach, Beethoven, or Brahms?”

Kidlinger: “I don’t know.”

Me: “How about some Bach… violin sonata in G minor? Something to encourage you to practice your violin.”

Kidlinger: “Yeah, that sounds good.”

NOTES:
[1] Here’s a brief bio on Shostakovich: http://www.classical.net/music/comp.lst/shostakovich.php
[2] This is not a reference to the 1991 release of Anthrax’s B-sides collection Attack of the Killer B’s. But it is a reference to the three greatest classic music composers, commonly knowns as the Three B’s, Bach, Beethoven, or Brahms. Here’s a link to recent relesases of the Three B’s from NPR’s “Music We Love Now: New Albums Of Bach, Beethoven And Brahms”: http://www.npr.org/blogs/deceptivecadence/2013/03/18/174659127/music-we-love-now-the-3-bs-on-cd

One of the three B's?

ShostakovichThis morning, kidlinger walks up to my desk while I work, looks at the laptop screen critically and asks: “What’s that?”

Me: “I’m listening to Shostakovich.[1]

Kidlinger: “He’s not one of the three killer B’s.[2]

Me: “True. Would you prefer to listen to Bach, Beethoven, or Brahms?”

Kidlinger: “I don’t know.”

Me: “How about some Bach… violin sonata in G minor? Something to encourage you to practice your violin.”

Kidlinger: “Yeah, that sounds good.”

NOTES:
[1] Here’s a brief bio on Shostakovich: http://www.classical.net/music/comp.lst/shostakovich.php
[2] This is not a reference to the 1991 release of Anthrax’s B-sides collection Attack of the Killer B’s. But it is a reference to the three greatest classic music composers, commonly knowns as the Three B’s, Bach, Beethoven, or Brahms. Here’s a link to recent relesases of the Three B’s from NPR’s “Music We Love Now: New Albums Of Bach, Beethoven And Brahms”: http://www.npr.org/blogs/deceptivecadence/2013/03/18/174659127/music-we-love-now-the-3-bs-on-cd

For years have pushed art making away from me. Partly due to lack of space and consolidating my paintings into small sketchbooks. Then I replaced paint for pen and ink, and drew smaller images into Moleskines until my drawings disappeared into lines of characters trying to form poems…

Now, I want to start painting again…

(Image source via creativeinspiration: 472239364: artpixielove letters and skypaints: http://www.flickr.com/photos/tinycastles/3912498882/)