Friday, November 25, 2016

East Side Culture Crawl

Last weekend I took in the Culture Crawl, an artistic festival that opens up studios and lets people into the artist's space. Spread out over the east side of Vancouver, I focussed on the Clark Drive area (close to Commerical). Many different mediums are represented - paintings, photography, wood work, glass, pottery, sculpture and textiles. Here are some photos I took at the festival.

Glass hearts by Laura Burns

Painted alarm bells by Christina Norberg

Painting by Jon Shaw

Pottery by Jinny Whitehead

Pottery by Shawn Mccord

Initial eggs by Jacquie Rolston

Friday, November 18, 2016

Helpful books Part I

I thought I would share some books that I have found helpful and inspirational for illustration and business. Going through my books I found more than I thought I would, so will probably break this up into two posts.

Nuts & Bolts
This is a book by Charles Hively, the art director behind 3x3 magazine (an illustration magazine). It is a collection of illustration advice from speeches he gave at universities. It is very direct and gives short to the point advice for emerging illustrators. He talks about illustration as a business, websites, and being visible as an illustrator. I picked Nuts & Bolts up in New York, so am not sure if it is available in Canada.

Art Inc.
This book is by artist and illustrator Lisa Congdon, and talks about building your career as an artist. It is a compact guide for artists wishing to grow their business. She discusses different paths you can take, for example galleries or exhibitions, and also illustration and licensing your work. She goes through the nitty gritty of promoting yourself and treating your art as a business. Lisa also talks about managing success, and different options when you get really busy. She also includes profiles of different artists.

How to be an Illustrator
by Darrel Rees
This book goes a little more in depth to how to operate your illustration business. He talks about portfolios, looking for your first job, how to go about producing your first job, finances, promotion. He also discusses the pros and cons of working from home, or renting a studio. Darrel also talks about agents, and the pros and cons. He includes interviews with professional illustrators, such as Sam Weber and Yuko Shimizu.

Handbook of Pricing and Ethical Guidelines
This is the Graphic Artists Guild Handbook, and is an extremely thorough look at the graphic arts and illustration industries. It covers legal rights, professional and technology issues, business practices, contracts. It goes in depth into graphic design, web design, and illustration and discusses each industry. It also has lists of pricing standards for each industry. This is the section I find most useful, and use it for quoting jobs. For example it will list price ranges for editorial illustration for full page, half page, spot illustrations. This book also includes samples of contracts, so you can use it for drafting your own contract.

Children's Writers and Illustrators Market
This books talks about the publishing industry, and how to go about submitting your work. The majority of the book is a list of publishers and their contact info. The list includes book publishers, magazines, and agents. Information on how to submit work is included with each listing. There is also a list of conferences and workshops.

The Handmade Marketplace
by Kari Chapin
This book is about the craft and handmade industry. It talks about branding, business practices, marketing. It also talks about blogging and social media. There are also sections on craft fairs, online stores, and getting into brick and mortar stores.

Friday, November 11, 2016

October in the Chair

This is a self promo illustration I did this week. I decided to do a portrait of a character in a short story. The story is "October in the Chair" from Neil Gaiman's collection Fragile Things. In the story the months of the year gather around a fire to tell stories. This is a tradition that they do, and the leader in the chair rotates. This time it is October's turn.

This is the description of October from the book:

"His beard was all colors, a grove of trees in autumn. Deep brown and fire orange and wine red, an untrimmed tangle across the lower half of his face. His cheeks were apple red" - Neil Gaiman

Friday, November 04, 2016

thank you!

Thanks to everyone that came out to my show this past month. Lots of people came to the opening, and I sold five pieces, so that was exciting. I think all in all it went pretty well, and was a good experience. Now I know how much work goes into preparing for a show.

Here is a brief post about the logo design process, similar to the illustration process I posted about earlier.

Logo Design Process

1. Brief - First step is to collect the information you need from the client. I do this with a questionnaire that I send to my clients. Things like what their business is, target audience, colours they want used, any ideas they may have. You can also get them to do a mood board, which is a collection of images, typefaces, and colours they like. This helps you get an idea of what is in their head.

2. Next step is thumbnails. From the information you have gathered, you create fast, small sketches to explore ideas.

3. After thumbnails you select your best ideas and create larger sketches known as roughs. In this stage it is best to work in black and white first, and add colour later. A well-designed logo works in black and white.

4. Feedback - You send the roughs to the client and they pick the one they like best, or give you changes to make.

5. Final - Once a sketch is approved, you create the final logo design. I usually send a variety of files to the client: high-res files for print, low-res files for web, and a vector file which can be sized to any size.