Friday, 16 February 2018

Walton Herbs Hand Drawn Location Map

Have spent the last few days tweaking an illustrated map of Wakefield. It was commissioned by Walton Herbs as part of their PR for the new year. I hand drew all the elements separately (Map, Frame, Herbs, Buildings etc) then assembled them in Photoshop which made things a lot easier than hand drawing the thing in one go. One of the biggest challenges when making a hand drawn map is scale.

In reality the selected area that the brief stated would fit portrait proportions better but that would also mean big  areas of unrelated detail, important 'microscopic' roads and a whole lot of time drawing unnecessary details. My job was to balance the clients wishes with the budget and edit the image into something visually pleasing in a landscape format.

I used Google Maps as my starting reference point for the Wakefield area, roughing out the design with a brush pen to get bold lines. In Photoshop I scaled, skewed and distorted the map into a shape I was happy with (that's where the 'not to scale' line comes in). I scanned that into Photoshop, added a few bits like the decorative border then sent that to the client for approval.

Once approved I drew the map with a dip pen nib (I think it was a Leonardt 801) and indian ink at A4 size on 300gsm smoth water colour paper, the final image will be used on websites, A5 brochures and leaflets. The mapping pen gives a good line at various thicknesses. 

I hand coloured the line art with transparent water colour. This is so much easier than colouring digitally for my drawing style. I had made a few mistakes (mostly misspelling road names) but they can easily be corrected later on when everything is compiled.

I created the digital artwork in an A4 400dpi file even though the brief stated A5, it doesn't hurt to have the ability to provide larger artwork for the client later on. I didn't' go any higher than A4 because working large can look great but then when it's physically reduced and printed at A5 and the details of road names could be lost. I printed off the map at A5 just to make sure things were still legible.

I sent the client proofs of the map and they came back with a few minor changes but were delighted with how it looked.

Thursday, 8 February 2018

Foraging in the Bushes


Set back from the road drawing a clump of trees in the park after my run.

Stood fairly still and I am soon joined by a foraging rodent. It doesn't really pay that much attention to me, after sussing I have nothing edible upon my person. I am surprised at how long it does hang around, jumping in and out of a rotting log a few feet from me.


Thursday, 1 February 2018

Hourly Comic Day 2018

February the 1st is international Hourly Comic Day where creatives document their day hour by hour and post it online with the hashtag #HourlyComicDay. This is my fourth year of  attempting an hourly comic and I loath it but still feel compelled to participate. I justify the pain in that I have a history of doing diary comics and it's the perfect excuse to dip my toes back in the personal documentation pool. I also get a fairly good response from social media which breaks the solitary loneliness of the work at home illustrator.

I hate it because I end up drawing drawings of me drawing because that's what I was doing at that particular hour later on, which I  personally find a bit boring. After the 2pm instalment I was catching up with the hourly comic, answering emails, doing a bit of planing on a small illustration project. and reading a script for another more involved planned project. Necessary behind the scenes type endeavours that makes the stuff 'up front' work.

Technically not a comic I know, more a collection of images made to document my life between the hours of 8am to 2pm.