Enchanted Forest

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I… don’t like doing environment sketches. At all. Mostly because I’m really not very good at them.

So in order to challenge myself, I did an environment sketch (thank you so much Deanna for the inspiration!)

Der satanarchäolügenialkohöllische Wunschpunsch

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This painting was inspired by the love I bear my sister. To acknowledge her efforts in reading the German books my mother asks her to (and make it more fun!), I began making small illustrations for each book she read.
The drawing began as a pencil sketch; after numerous thumbnails, I settled on a composition I liked for the following reasons:

  • Dynamic behaviour of characters
  • Movement of the eye goes in a diagonal from the focal point (cauldron/high contrast to background) to the What really encouraged me to complete this image was the success I had with creating a satisfying aesthetic after making the background a green to black gradient. It instantly set the tone for a witchy painting, and made illustrating the work extremely enjoyable.
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Initial Sketch

Sensing that I wanted to spend more time on this drawing than I typically do on a digital piece, I approached it in a modular fashion, adding detail from region to region and exploring how I could bring contrast and character into my painting one step at a time. The fact that with every added detail the mood of the painting changed made this immensely exciting, and I really enjoyed unearthing what I came to see as its spirit.
My sister’s knowledge of the story also shaped the piece, something I found profoundly interesting. I must admit: I was not familiar with the source book of the illustration. I love the author, but for synopsis and a general idea of what was going on in the plot I relied heavily on online summaries and looked quite carefully at existing illustrations, especially those in the book itself. Nevertheless, I was drawing on shaky foundations, and it was my sister who filled in the gaps for me. For example, as I believed that a witch’s cat should be black, the cat was initially black. My sister corrected me, however, as well as insisting on small details such as the ruby ring worn by the male wizard, and through this collaboration I believe we created a piece that truly represents the story it is based on.

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Process

 

Bookmarks

Chiara (my youngest sister) is in midst of an arduous journey to improve her German, a monumental (just kidding, her technical knowledge of German grammar is by now considerably better than mine, and her speaking ability practically fluent) task which necessitates reading many German books — not her favourite activity.

Recently she began reading a book I really loved as a child, Ronja Räubertochter, and to show Chiara that I hugely respect the effort she puts into her work and art my way through the week, I decided to make her a bookmark.

Hopefully, more will follow!

Ronja Räubertochter (Ronja The Robber’s Daughter)

The bookmark is done in a more static style, as I tested my abilities to ink neatly digitally. I was inspired by stained glass windows, and, if you zoom in on the picture, the texture ought to reveal itself.

I made one “mistake”, and that was painting Birk’s hair white-blonde, the way both Chiara and I imagined it to be. As she neared the end, she suddenly came across a description in which his hair was copper-red. Whoops. Therefore, two variants now exist. I  think I still like the blonde one better!

Puffin for Christmas

Slowly but surely getting the hang of my tablet again…

I’m especially feeling more confident about the colours and the clarity of the lines.

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Puffin for Christmas

Elephant Charging

So I recently resurrected my tablet (turns out I had the wrong driver software installed, whoops. That certainly explains a lot), and consequently have had to begin reteaching myself how to draw digitally. One of the difficulties, I find, certainly when compared to traditional media, is creating convincing textures giving it sufficient detail without losing a sense of the mass of a subject. Which is pretty much all of art. Lots to learn!

A relatively short piece, maybe one to two hours.

(The war paint on the elephant was inspired to some extent by this piece of art. I can only aspire…)

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One of the nice things about digital art is how easily one can manipulate it:

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Bergfest MenĂź

No celebration is complete without food, and no food is truly enjoyable without having a menu beside you listing all the wonderful courses you still have ahead of you. My parents’ fiftieth birthday party was no exception, and I ended up making them a hand-drawn (how hand-drawn is a digital piece, exactly?) menu.

I do hope that it was received as well as the food was!

Happy Easter!

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After brainstorming and gathering references for Bunte Träume, I found myself with a couple sketchbook pages’ worth of bunny sketches. Raring to try out our new scanner, I took it into Photoshop and coloured the doodles digitally. Happy Easter!

Digital (More Recent)

After, for as-yet unidentified reasons, I had neglected digital art for some months, I picked up my tablet again and started drawing… these are really my first forays into the world of Photoshop and its unblended deserts (ok I’ve since figured out how to make Photoshop blend but the sentiment’s there.)