Wednesday, March 11, 2009

More Sheep

After seeing all the sheep in New Zealand, I'm obsessed. I didn't have time to prepare a new image to paint in my watercolor class tonight, so I decided to just play around and experiment using a drawing from my sketchbook.  I scanned the sketch and printed it out on watercolor paper. I modified the color of the line work so it wasn't black, but more of  a dark maroon color. I painted the image in watercolor which caused the line work to bleed a little bit, but I liked the effect. I then  added a little watercolor pencil for texture and rescanned the color version into Painter when I got home. I digitally added a few more details and a little more texture to the wool. I then opened the image in photoshop and tweeked the color of the grass which was much more green in the original. Added the butterfly which I cut and pasted from an old illustration. I love being able to do the finishing details on the computer. That way if it gets overworked, I can delete the stuff that isn't working and still have the original painting. 

Friday, March 6, 2009

Illustration Friday: Intricate

                                   ©Deborah Melmon

This illustration reminds me of one night at Lake Wanaka in New Zealand. A friend of mine and I were having dinner in an upstairs restaurant and we were seated near the window overlooking the courtyard below. A couple walked out of one of the courtyard restaurants and it was obvious that they were in an argument. We couldn't hear a word they were saying, but their body language said everything! 

Thursday, March 5, 2009

My Latest Board Book

Here's a board book I did for Innovative Kids that is finally out. I started this book in October of 2007 and final artwork was submitted to the publisher in January of 2008 which was too late for Easter last year. So finally it is out! A cute concept.....a bag with the board book attached and dye-cut Easter eggs on the inside for kids to hide and collect. This spread is my favorite with the chick getting creative in his little farmhouse "art studio." 

The art director and I went round and round trying to create a rabbit for the cover of this book. Our first attempts, which we both liked, did not pass the muster when presented to the marketing and sales people. I think the original rabbit looked too edgy and marketing wanted a cute, white, cuddly rabbit. I spent one weekend coming up with 15 different rabbits which were reviewed and this version was finally selected. Art by committee! :o)

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Illustration Friday: Breezy

With the wind in her wool, the sheep felt light and breezy. Ok, a stretch, but I just got back from New Zealand and have sheep on my mind. Decided to play around with Painter today and sketched the sheep using a crow quill pen. Then using layers, I painted the background using sponges and the blender tool. Fun!

Monday, March 2, 2009

Missing in Action

Yikes! I managed to sneak out of town without leaving a post that I would be gone for awhile. In case you've been wondering, I just got back from a three week trip to New Zealand. Wow! What an amazing trip. Toured mostly the south island this year with only a few days spent in Auckland.  The south island is much more spectacular in beauty than the north...which is saying a lot, as the north island is incredibly beautiful!  Millions of sheep everywhere. These lovely beauties live on the farm of my friend Kathryn Wills. Some of them are self-moulting sheep. Their wool just falls off, so they never have to be sheared. I had a blast wandering around the pasture taking their pictures.  More pics tomorrow!