Friday, 4 September 2015

Using Illustrator for illustration

I've used Adobe Illustrator in the past for logo work, but never considered it for illustrations. That would seem odd to most digital artists, so to be fair I gave it a go over the last two days to see if I could work with it.  As a child I remember our family had a pet duchshund, so here's the quick sketch that started me off

After looking at some reference material I decided my initial sketch was pretty accurate so started the slow frustrating process of making it inside Illustrator.

I found things slower because (A) I'm learning and (B) using the path tools with bezier handles is more work than Anime Studio's simple path curves, however they are more precise perhaps. Textures were added later in Photoshop which is a bit of a cheat.

The following day I decided to do another one, based on the family cat. I know I want to do a more complex and larger piece, but now is not the time, for now I'm keeping it simple.

This time around I had a better idea of what I was doing, it was still not as fast for me as using Anime Studio but it wasn't painful. I'm definitely going to keep at it so that I can be equally comfortable using both software choices.

Thursday, 3 September 2015

Illustrating in Anime Studio Pro

I've been exploring the idea of using Anime Studio Pro as a tool for creating one off illustrations, ASP is designed for animation however some of the line/vector tools and simple layer system make it a faster workflow than Illustrator or Photoshop.

It's illuminating to show my first sketches. Primarily when I'm designing I want to capture the idea, quick and rough. I get a good directive of the sort of energy or personality I'm trying to retain  for when I go into the rather methodical impersonal world of vectors.

I'm always surprised at how much stuff in the doodles ends up in the final work.

In the following example, the first drawing was a tiny scribble, spring-boarding off an idea for arm placements. Everything I needed to know was in the first doodle, when I figured this was going to be Conan O'Brian I did another quick doodle for his head, only then did I go searching for references.

Since I was pretty happy with the illustration of Hipster-types I thought I'd do another one of people. I chose to do a random group waiting for a bus (this turns out to be a fairly common idea I found).
This sketch was pretty complete as a starting point. Notice the small man  / woman in the vest, I had no idea what I was going for and figured I'd resolve it in the final image.

But I never did, is it a short feminine man or a man-ish woman? It's the weakest part of the image because I don't know what I'm saying with that character, but then they're random people so perhaps I'm not mean't to know.

Click on the images for larger views.