A Brief Deconstruction of Me




Alright, here we are again. Thank you for reading this new post. I am going to my series on my working method. This installment will cover thumbnails. Let me start by explaining what thumbnails are for those that may not be certain. Basically, thumbnails are small very simple sketches used to show your idea. When I say very simple, I mean no real detail at all. Their purpose is generally to show and work out ideas. Keeping these sketches small and unrefined allows you to focus composition without being concerned with drawing details. Below are three thumbnails I did for a project I’m currently working on. Each is slightly different. I already had an idea of what I wanted to do; the thumbnails just aid me with visuals. Now of course these are practically chicken scratch, but the purpose is getting what is in my head organized on paper.


 1) This was the first thumbnail I came up with, just a horse and rider with the moon above. A very simple sketch, no detail.

2) Very similar to the first with flags and a slight indication of clouds.

3) Same as the first two minus the moon and flags, even more simple. Remember, aesthetics is not the goal.   

 I settled on number 2, of course there is the chance that the finished product will only resemble the thumbnail. The end illustration doesn’t have to be a carbon copy of the thumbnail, it should evolve. Well, that’s it for now. I know this one was short but it’s still important.  Next time I’ll cover the next step, reference. So until month…





A Brief Deconstruction Of Me

Hello again. I know it’s been a little while since my last post, but I’m here now. I wasn’t sure what I wanted to talk about for this one, then it came to me. My last post was about my working process and the steps I go through when creating a piece. I thought why not just expand on that last post and explore each step. So, this post and the next 4 post will examine my creative process. With that being said let’s get started.


Of course, the first step every artist takes is coming up with an idea. Sometimes the idea is just inspiration not really anything you have to think about. For me I usually get ideas from comics, animation, tv/movies, dreams and nightmares. I may not even know what I want create just that I have an idea and I need to illustrate something based around the inspiration I just got and trying to figure out what I want to do. I also am thinking about what I am trying to convey. I like for my work to have a story, although it may not always be obvious to the viewer. The idea for the project that I am currently working on came after seeing one of Frank Frazetta’s famous, “Death Dealer” illustrations.

Now, I can think about the story I want to show. I want this piece to be dark, ominous and moody. The main focal point is the figure and I envision him enjoying the misery he brings. I also want this to be very detailed too, no abstraction. Once I have the story worked out and a general idea of what I want to illustrate I move on to trying to decide if this piece should be mixed media, traditional tonal, graphic design or a combination. This can take me some time to decide, because I want to explore what is the best method of transferring what’s in my head to the page. I finally decided that I will illustrate this new piece with a combination of color and traditional tonal media. With all the brainstorming done it’s time to go on to thumbnailing. Now keep in mind that just because I’m done brainstorming doesn’t mean I’m done thinking about the piece. I am always thinking through the work, because I can change anything on the fly. Up next, thumbnails.

Before I go, I wanted to shout out a great artist by the name of, Kelly Wagner. Kelly is an awesome artist who uses Adobe Illustrator to create her incredible work. I have seen a lot of artists use Illustrator, myself included, but I have not seen anyone use it so well to make art. Be certain to visit her site at http://kellywagnerdesign.com. I also posted a link in the “Useful Links” portion of my site.

Well, that’s it for now so until next time…






A Brief Deconstruction Of Me: My Illustration Process

I decided that for this post I would break my illustration process down into a series of basic steps from an infographic I made for myself, it’s also posted on all my social media sites. Now this is just a quick reference and not by any means everything I do. Of course there would be more or less steps depending on the project. I will do a more extensive breakdown in a later post. For right now though, here are my general steps.


1) Brainstorm - Ideas and Inspiration

This is where I think about what I want to illustrate. The idea can come from anywhere - Comics, Animation, Dreams, Movies, etc. Where the idea comes from is not that important, it's what idea entails that is.


2) Thumbnails - Get the idea down

This is the stage where I do multiple small sketches called "thumbnails". All I am trying to do is just make the idea visual. I'm not concerned with details at this point, which why the sketches are small, that way I can do as many as I need in a short amount of time.

3) Reference - Keep it real or not

Everything I draw, regardless if it's a comic book, a sci-fi scene or a portrait, there is some connection to reality though I will also rely on just my imagination too in some cases. Finding reference for a new piece can be daunting. With the internet I can usually find whatever visuals I need, but I always have my camera near just in case I need to create my own.


4) Layouts - Refinement

Now I can start my layouts, which are just larger more refined thumbnails. This stage allows me to work any difficult areas or composition issues before I commit to the final drawing surface. I will sometimes do a few of these as well just to see if I like a different composition or even combine elements from different thumbnails.

5) Draw - Put it all together

Now I can "begin" drawing. I would also decided on my materials and what I'm going to draw on. I've worked out any issues in the layout stage and can start making a finished illustration.


That is it for the most part. Well until next time...