I decided that I needed a little break to avoid getting burned out. I have been trying to learn SO much, and improve in certain areas, and just honestly I can't... stop... drawing! But house projects are calling and our kids need a little more attention than usual, so we are taking a little break today to slow down before the rush of Monday comes.
While I was cleaning, my mind was still running 100mph trying to remember everything that needs to be done for work on Monday and going over upcoming bills in my mind, and a million other daily stresses that we all go through. Then out of the blue as I'm cleaning out the Laundry room I found these little gems that I did a few years back: Whimsi-kits by the scrapbooking company My Minds Eye.
It was my first "paying" illustration job, and usually when you look back on older work you think, "wow I've come so far", or "oh how embarrassing". Well this time I thought to myself, "I had SUCH a great time doing these!" and realized that my "style has sort of come full circle and I'm back to a similar way of drawing that I have always done for years, except now I'm mostly digital. So now I feel ready to continue forward improving on subject matter, and creating more interesting compositions with characters that have more expression. But the same style I had in high school drawing in sharpie and then painting with watercolor using a paper towels, or back before kids when I would draw for hours using a ball point pen, water color pencils and spit to blend... it's all the same!
Now I draw in my sketchbook in pencil each night after I'm done working and if I like a sketch I go over it in pen using the inkling. That transports into the computer keeping all of my sketchy pen strokes that I love, and then I color everything in using photoshop. Sometimes I'll go over it again with a pencil brush to form stronger shapes or even add more texture. It really feels organic and natural... just like it has so many times before!
Anyway, here are a few pics close up. It had a short shelf life as they decided to go all digital the following year using only graphic patterns. That's how fast industries change. I'm glad to have found an area in children's Book Illustration that allow the pen strokes to stay the same and they can grow along with trending colors, subjects and mediums. Feels like home :)
Have a wonderful weekend!