The Public Law Project is a regular client of mine. A few years back they commissioned me to draw a series of images to appear on covers of various leaflets and brochures that they were printing. Fast forward to an email appearing in my inbox the other day asking me to revisit one of the images and update it a tad with a shimmy and a re-jiggle.
A techni-coloured city scene
The original image was of a city scene, swirling and twirling in a wash of 60’s saturated colour. The revised version became that and so much more. In fact it actually hurt my eyes to look at it prior to the colour being added.
It was important to show the diversity of people who want or need to use the PLP’s services, hence the queue. What’s less apparent is the essential need to make everything extremely brightly coloured. But hey! That’s my job!
A lifelong ambition achieved! Finally, I’ve been commissioned to draw a series of dinosaur images. Now, I know the clever ones of you out there will instantly point out that none of these are technically dinosaurs per-se, they merely lived in the same time-frame as the dinosaurs. Regardless, I’m still very pleased – thanks Reading!
I’ve been trying an experiment with my artworks; can I make the drawings simpler, the colouring simpler, the whole thing less cluttered and complicated, yet still retain the fun element that would make a viewer want to look at the picture. Tricky job that’s for sure, mostly given that that’s the basic remit of any illustration, but especially so for me as I always enjoy making my images as complicated as possible – often to the detriment of visual legibility.
Fish – bloop bloop
A couple of different subjects to begin with, starting off with some fish. I was pointed in the direction of the excellent Matt Ward on the Beehive illustration website as he’s got an absolute mastery of this less-is-more approach.
Here’s my fish in all their simplistic glory.
Looking good! But not really that different from my usual style, only less complicated – which was the idea, but I’m not sure it works as well as I’d have liked.
Cowboy gold prospector
Naturally my next choice was of a cowboy, but again, I’m not sure that it’s actually that much less complex than my regular style. There’s still some fussy line work going on, the ends of the logs on the log cabin for example. Definitely needs work.
All the colours under the sun
What I have enjoyed with this new direction is abandoning shading with a gradual or soft edge and replacing it with a direct, hard-edged shadow, making everything a little more geometric. It’s also good to run care-free and dispose of everything one holds sacred when it comes to colouring in. I think it only rationale that a gold prospectors house and associated fencing should be lurid pink. Goes without saying in my book.