Friday, February 01, 2008

Anatomy of an illustration job

I'm on a roll with these illustrators shop talk posts! I'm happy to hear that many of you are enjoying them. Over at Illustration for kids, we are talking about Process, I thought I would also post over here too.

Instead of talking about my process in illustrating, I thought I would talk more about the process of an illustration job. For this particular job, it was a map for a kindergarten book.

Sometimes clients send me quick sketches of what they want, and half the time it throws me off. Do they want it exactly like this or is there some room for me to make it my own? It also takes a bit of fun out for me, but other times it just makes the job go smoother. In this case, I get a quick sketch from the client and it works, because I now get an idea of how the layout of the map is like:
With the additional info I get, I use my illustrating power to turn that into this:
I still do pencil sketches. I scan the sketch and place it into Illustrator, where I use to pen tool to draw on top of my sketch. And here is the final:
When there is text in the illustration, alot of times the type will need to be on a separate layer. Voila! Time for another job!

19 comments:

Jeff Brame said...

Really enjoy you sharing your process. Thanks a bunch.

Tami said...

This is very interesting to see. How do you deal with clients who tell you exactly what they want and you know that that way won't be as successful as your way? When I did swimwear design I got this a lot. Whenever I did exactly as told it didn't turn out that great and I bore the brunt of the blame. But whenever I did what I wanted and gave the client the credit for the idea it always turned out better.

Thanks for sharing your process with us! :-)

Chickengirl said...

Tami-Its such a tough one, isn't is!? I always try to add some little extras, and if I have time, I would do a second version with my own twist.(sometimes I just don't have time for that. )But I think when the client sends me their sketch, my creative mind is already "tainted" and can't seem to turn it around and start fresh.

I can gauge how far I can stray from their original sketch from the comments I get back from the first round of sketches. We all want to do a good job the first time around though, so its very hard!

sandy said...

Thanks for showing how you create your wonderful illustrations. =)

Diana Evans said...

love these posts...the progression is very cool...

have a wonderful weekend!

Cheers,
Diana

Kathy Weller said...

Totally cool stuff...thanks so much for sharing. Love posts like these. I would like to do some of my own! Thanks for the inspiration and window into your process!! :)

Gis said...

Another awesome post *giggle*
Dear, I know you were awarded already, but I had to do it too: http://www.giselejaquenod.com.ar/blog/2008/02/02/making-my-day-d/
I dont think you need to do it again anyway *giggle*

Tracy said...

Love seeing your process. Thanks! :) BTW, my kiddoes (Kindergarten students that is) have been studying about penguins. We recently read your book you sent to us, The Penguins' Perfect Picnic and they loved it! They loved the idea of a BINGO and Memory game included. We're working on our favorite part of the book to send you our illustrations! Hope you don't mind :) Thanks for inspiring. TRACY

Zari said...

hello Chickengirl!
It's so generous of you to share your illustration process...thank you so much! i always love to know about the way you do your awesome illos!

-i'm so glad you received the package and that you liked it..really glad ;) and sorry once again for the delay! this trade was fabulous!

ellencrimitrent said...

Hi Jannie,

Can't wait to meet you this week, and love to see how you work! Do you use a Wacom tablet? I am going to purchase one and try to illustrate digitally instead of painting all the time. Does it make it much faster?

Ellen

zime said...

Thanks Jan!! This step-by-step is so great!!!!
Big hug!!
(^v^)

mike r baker said...

This rocks! Thanks for sharing! :)

Anonymous said...

You are very talented. I'm going right now to visit you on etsy.

sketched out said...

So enjoyable to see the process of your wonderful drawing. Fun to see the pencil sketch come alive in Illustrator.

If you don't mind my asking, how long does it typically take you to do something that involved, once you're in the Illustrator phase? I feel like such a slowpoke myself and would love a gauge.

Thanks for sharing!

Anja said...

It´s very interesting to me to see how you´re working. And I like the result a lot.

Chickengirl said...

Thanks all!

Sketchout: Thank you. I've never actually timed myself but for something like this, I would say a few hours, maybe 3 hours? Unfortunately, when I do art, I am also surfing the net alot, so who knows how long it actually takes me if I concentrate!

John Coulter said...

Awesome. so how do you render it in Illustrator? Do you use the pen tool or sort of freehand your shapes with the pencil tool?

Do tell sister!

Chickengirl said...

Hey John:
Mostly everything is done with the pen pool. I never touch the pencil tool. I get the same effect and more control when I use the pen.

And I occasionally use the shapes tool (rectangle, circle, etc.).

kristina fey said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.