I was looking through a blog i recently started following looking for some inspiration and found lot's of really good work there that i could have written about, but this beer calendar, originally found on the Behance network was the one that I just had to post. First off, i like the intricate drawings. There is a lot going on in every page, all the space is filled and each picture gives off a great atmosphere that responds to the idea of beer being a fun, social drink. However, what really struck me personally is when i looked at the figures, especially in the first picture. I have always had trouble with drawing people right, but i looked at this picture and realised that i obviously have never really been "looking" at how to draw them in the first place. So i used these images as reference to do a few quick sketches of faces myself and already i can see where i've been going wrong. SO on top of all the uni work we're being set at the moment, i think that it is very important to find the time to carry on practice drawing faces as much as possible!


Petra Stefankova

I found Petra Stefankova's work in one of the monthly art magazines i buy, and although it was only her 3D work shown in the magazing, i was motivated to find out a little more about her work online. I found that she also deals in 2D work just as much, depending on her mood or the brief she has been set, but pretty much keeps the same sort of style. What i liked about her work in the first place though, was how her characters and features remind me of cubism in a way, and also include a slightly industrial look about them. They are made with fun, playful shapes and even though there is so much going on in the images there isn't fault in any line ot texture. I can't imagine creating a piece like the 3D pictures in the middle at this point but the 2D image at the bottom looks like an exciting piece where i can grab a lot of ideas and inspiration from.

Alex Williamson

In my first year i had a project where i was given an illustrator and had copy one of their images the best i could in order to explore how the image might have been created. It was a fun process, deconstructing the image, and i also made my own image like my given Illustrator using the same process. My Illustrator was Alex Williamson, and i found his work on my coomputer so thought i'd share because i really like it.
I was so confused as to how i was going to do it for quite a while because, as you can see, there are a lot of elements he likes to use. Most of his images incorporate collages of photos, scribbles, splodges, logos, textures and actual pictures, yet when it all comes together creates a chaotic but beautiful picture. There is also a great sense of depth within most of his images, use of foreground and background is played with, and all of this is mixed in with the colour scheme to create a very interesting atmosphere.

However, Williamson also knows when to reign in all of this chaos to produce pieces that are relevant to the clients he has. This can be seen in the work he has done for Vodafone, in the bottom two images. His style is still there in the background, showing off his playfulness in the subtle yellow space, while he is easily getting Vodafones massage across, and it works extremely well.

Frank Chimero

As well as just looking at work that might be relevant to the project or style i'm focussing on, i think it is also good practice to look at work from all area's of art and design. I also look at architecture, fine art and sculpture, i believe the more you take in the better. So here are some prints made by designer Frank Chimero. They are simple, yet tell a great message at the same time. I especially love the messages he's sending out with prints like this, if i woke up to these on my wall every morning i'm sure i would have so much more motivation.
I like his choice of type in each piece as well, it is obvious these prints haven't just been thrown together like i might have done, but carefully selected. This is a lesson i need to learn when coming across different types of projects: which is the best way to think about the solution to this problem, more instinctively or with more careful planning?

Ben Javens

I've only just seen Ben Javen's work recently but i already find his style very interesting. It is, in a way, the kind of look i was trying to go for with my book cover design i finished last week. He uses simple textured shapes to produce these aesthetically pleasing visuals, which also have a lot of character about them. A factor i also noticed about his pieces, shown underneath, is his attention to colour, which brings all the elements in the work together. This is done by only selecting the smallest amount of colours, and this gives his work more professionalism.

I have included images 3 and 4 in this post to give myself an example of how Ben turns a piece of work that he's already made into an edited version that can be used for commercial use. With just a few alterations, a simple picture has produced a really good advert. This is something i need to start considering for when we begin editorial work in the future.


Things I Have Learned.

What Motivates Me: Fun

I believe that everything a person does in their short life should incorporate as much fun as possible in order to get the best out of what they do. For example, I used to be very good at Maths in school, and was expected to carry this on later education, but I knew that if I ended up in a Maths-related job, I'd be hating my life. Now I always make sure I do something I enjoy everyday, and doing creative work accompanies this.

Things I Have Learned

It's OK to work with a free spirit: I always seem to be really worried about how my work will turn out or compare to other peoples, or what my style might be like. But increasingly over the second year, i'm coming to understand that these aren't the points I should be focussing on. These worries are shown in my work through how restrained it is, and I think that if i do a project in the future without any thought on the outcome, and just do what i like, maybe my work will express my personality a little more.

A good plan to begin with helps in the long run: Along with this, good research has helped me produce more rounded work. It's a no-brainer really but something i regularly ignore. I like to grab an idea and run with it, but now if i create lots of fast ideas I will be able to explore more and have a more confident finishing piece.

James an d the Giant Peach Movie Stills

I just thought i should include a little bit of research on my blog to show where some of my idea's are coming from in regards to the character development and the actual scene i will be depicting on the book cover. The characters in the film best show what the sort of look i want to go for, because they have been humanised by accessories such as hats, glasses and bags, and i think this will help the audience relate to them better. Also, the scene i want to show is when the peach is in the air, pulled along by the seagulls. In the story, there is a part where the centipede gets a little excited and falls off the peach, and Miss Spider and James go after him. This is the reason i have brought theese characters to the foreground of the front cover.

Ben Heine

I recently found this Artist while browsing the internet and was fascinated by these cool drawing/ photography pieces. Ben Heine has created loads of these, here is just a small selection of what he has to offer. I really like the fact that what he draws is always different, maybe depending on his mood that day, maybe down to careful planning (i hope it's the former). Sometimes, the drawing could be of what might be there, if it was stationary, like the tram line. Other times he uses iconic figures to create humour (like the Mario picture on the bottom) and even injects a little mystery into his work by creating spaces that wouldn't normally be there (top picture).

Graffiti Fun

I found this series of images on my less professional blog, but thought it would be cool to shear on here. I like it, although i find it hard to explain why. The artist almost knows that the text will be painted over before it even happens, and makes more of a mockery of the situation every time this happens. It's almost as if the question isn't really about the shade of grey the type is but the shade of grey society. That's what i get form it anyway.

David Hughes

Today in Illustration we had a talk/ lecture from design company Chase, initially intended for the third years but second years were welcome. I thought it might help me out with any professional thoughts i might start to have, so tagged along. The Art Directors gave some really good advice, but also showed work from some Illustrators that they've worked with in the past before.

One particular Illustrator that caught my eye was David Hughes, who has had numerous clients in Editorial including The Guardian and The New Yorker (the images below are all pieces for these two clients). The reason i want to share his work on here as well though is connected to realisations i've been having of my own work lately. David's work has a lot of the instinctive style that i need to include, matched with a solid use of colour, composition and characters with lots of... character!

When i saw his work for the first time on the screen it helped show me that it is ok to be more experimental and end up with work that still has a playful look to it yet till has a finished, professional element. I have doubts that i will ever end up drawing my figures the way he does but even so, just looking at other elements of his work has inspired me more than most work i've been looking at lately.

James and the Giant Peach: Final Outcome

Here is my finished book cover design for the Puffin Awards, based on James and the Giant Peach's 50th birthday celebration. I had quite a lot of fun experimenting with mixing the use of traditional printing with elements on photoshop with this project, and i feel like i got a lot more stuck in than i usually do. However, there are definitely pro's and con's to consider when looking at it, which has been highlighted with other peoples responses to it.

  • Good type
  • I think i did the layout of a book cover justice
  • Using a black background isn't the obvious choice but brings the work together, and is a successful background
  • Good use of texture.
  • Focus on making the characters look decent-- especially faces
  • Think about use of colour more, no need to saturate the image so much
  • I wish i'd spent more time on a better type for the blurb.