1001 Knights Anthology

 

I created an illustration for the 1001 Knights Anthology!  This is a collection of art, comics, and stories about knights, and thus perfect for my interests.  Here I will go into some of my process for creating my illustration.

1001 Knights Illio Thumbnail
1001 Knights Illio Thumbnail

I started with a thumbnail.  This is the basic idea, Nwain traveling from a sunny clearing into a darker place.  A vague sense of the picture had been bouncing in my head for months. It was nice to have an opportunity to pull it out.

I knew I wanted to include a short poem with the illustration. The text had to be incorporated into the composition at the beginning.  I wasn’t absolutely certain how long the poem would be, so I made a guess.

Refined thumbnail
Refined thumbnail

Before going further, I checked the “safe zone” for the eventual printed page, and adjusted accordingly.  Then I changed the scene to include the cave as a framing element.  I kept the trees, reflection, and pose, as they’re the essence of the original idea.  The addition of the cave helps to emphasize this transitional space between light and dark.

Lines
Line drawing
lines_2
Line drawing with composition overlay

Generally, I like to draw lines before diving into painting.  It helps me plan the compositional structure.  In the second picture, the red lines show what I’m thinking.  The cave helps lead the eye to Nwain with a golden spiral, which is continued by Shade’s horns and Nwain’s arm.  The cave opening has a slightly rectangular shape, which meets the smaller rectangle formed by the cave, the cave’s reflection, and the poem.  The vertical lines of the trees contrast with the roundness of the cave opening.  One tree aligns with the poem, again helping to anchor it in the composition.  Nwain looks at the poem, too, connecting it with her thoughts.

Value block-in
Value block-in

Now it’s time to start painting.  This is a rough stage where I’m primarily checking out the values (or the play of light and dark).   It’s a mostly dark picture, using white and light gray to show Nwain and Shade in near silhouette.  There are essentially two “places” in this picture, outside and inside, light and dark, with a small realm of medium light levels at the cusp of the cave.

The End!
The End!

Many hours and photoshop layers later, and here’s the final painting, complete with poem!  Hooray!

Go to the 1001 Knights Kickstarter and back the anthology!  It’s full of hundreds more works by knight enthusiasts from around the world.

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My Etsy Shop: Trinket Bags

Trinket Bags

In my spare time, I’ve been sewing dice bags.  Originally, I only made them for my Dungeons & Dragons group, but they insisted it was hard to find bags like these.  Apparently, there’s a market for cute bags with fun patterns.  So I started making bags with the intent to sell.  I sold enough bags at GeekGirlCon to buy a sewing machine, and that sped up production enormously.  Now I have enough to sell online.

Check out the goods in my Etsy shop, Trinket Bags!

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VanCAF Wrap-up & Olympia Comic Fest This Weekend

VanCAF – the Vancouver Comic Arts Festival – was great!  People were so intrigued by my animated comic, that I ran out of Nwain business cards!*  Also, I met up with fellow artists, some of whom I’ve been mutually following for years.  The festival staff and volunteers were extremely welcoming and supportive.  Overall a great experience!

 

Next up is Olympia Comics Fest!  I’ll be at the Cartoonists’ Expo, sharing a table with Joamette Gil and Zoey Hogan.

When: Saturday, June 6th, from 1:30pm to 6:30pm

Where: The Olympia Center

Admission:  FREE!

*I have since ordered many, many more.

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