Mixed media experiments

  • Pro SVS OG

    I haven't posted art here in a long long while....and time for personal project in general is getting very rare.
    However, I have this story I would like to illustrate - about a boy's adventures in a world of paper. I have been toying with it for a couple of months, trying to find ways to match the paper elements and the character. This past week I've had some free time and got really experimental - playing with collage, something I've never done once in my life.
    So I'm not sure even if it works....It's so new for me I don't even know if I like it or hate it. Opinions, therefore, very welcome!

  • SVS OG

    @smceccarelli This looks very good to me - it feels like possibly the folded paper in the air closest to the boy could maybe move to the right? A "steelyard" composition I think it would be called (I am drawn to the left of the page and it is hard to break away from it for me) I really like this style a lot (Oliver Jeffers is one of my favorite artists) - I look forward to seeing more of this!

  • @smceccarelli
    I love the dimensional look of the folded paper pieces, & the illustration is great as well! I want to see more of this story.

  • @miriam I like it very much. I like the lined paper with a child's writing on them. Will this be animated? i can see the little paper boat rocking the flag fluttering, and the waves rolling. Is this 3D software?

  • This work looks so unusual and interesting! It reminds me of pop-up books with layered paper backgrounds and mooving objects.

  • @smceccarelli It looks really great and almost like a frame out of a stop motion film or something. I think you should explore this.

  • @smceccarelli I love this! Definitely keep going on this track and keep sharing!

  • SVS OG

    I think it's very cool and it looks like it takes a lot of work!

  • I love this--it looks amazing. I am a big fan of collage and this is awesome

  • @smceccarelli Definitely continue on with this! Love looking at all the dimensions, textures, marks, etc.

  • SVS OG

    @smceccarelli this is really cool! I love the layers, it's such an interesting image to look at. Keep going with the project, it will be great t see more.

  • Wonderful concept. I think the illustration style is "fresh" and very expressive. I look forward to seeing more!

  • Pro SVS OG

    @w-coats Thank you! Animation is a good idea (and would be fairly easy to do on this one) but I'm just experimenting at the moment. No 3D software - just plain paper folding. I've actually looked into doing origami with 3D software but it's about 100 times more work than doing it by hand in the real world...

  • Pro SVS OG

    Thank you all for the encouragement!! I didn't expect such a positive reaction - it feels so weird to work this way. But I'll keep experimenting and seeing what suits best to the story. I've tried fully painted versions and maybe there is more to be done there, but for the moment I'll dig a bit deeper into this approach.
    Another source of feedback told me that the boy it's too stylized and doesn't fit with the realistic paper shapes - and I think they're right. So either the boy can get more realistic or the paper shapes more stylized (and not done with collage anymore, obviously).
    Here is a version with a more realistic boy. Curious which one you like best...


  • I love this idea I actually prefer the first boy,but both are good.It is a original and interesting idea.

  • SVS OG

    I like the second, but it may be as much the expression on his face as it is style. In the first one, I was looking more at the paper cut outs but in the second, my eye was drawn immediately to the boy.

  • @smceccarelli fabulous! fabulous! Simona to my eye this one is much better, his expression makes me think of wonder. so I'm more drawn into the story (which is after all the point). Excellent!
    If you wanted to animate you could use a 2D software because this scene is essentially flat. I would use Adobe After Effects, but I think there are other options.

  • @smceccarelli
    Both look great! I think it depends on the feel of the story. The first one would go well with light, fun, silly, & playful stories and the second one might be better for more serious, deeper, heart felt, &/or mysterious types of stories. The both have a sense of wonder, curiosity, creativity, and imagination.

    In the first one, I think the simplicity of the drawing and the flatter look of the character pair well with the basic shapes of the origami and the common quality and flatness of paper. I like the contrast of the realistic paper with the stylized character.

    The pose and rendering on the second drawing give it a beautiful, 3D look. It has a nice contrast as well with the soft, round shapes of the boy against the sharp, flat lines of the paper.

    I think the second boy does stand out more than the first boy, but adding a little sharpness / crispness to the lines on the first boy might pull more attention to him. Maybe you could try defining the edges of his face and arm a little more where they are blending into the background. You could also try softening the cloud with the writing on it, to drop it back a little.

    Just something to think about in comparison with the story: The boy in the second version looks younger with a rounder face. To me, he looks like he probably couldn't have folded the origami on his own. The boy in the first illustration looks old enough to have made them.

    It's great to be able to see you work on this. Thanks for sharing!

  • @smceccarelli I really like the 2nd version as the boy feels like he is interacting with his surrounds a lot more and I think going more realistic with the design fits well. I find the flag in the middle of the boat to be a slight distraction though as it feels as though I focus more on that when looking at the picture than at the boy.

    Have you thought about the text on the paper being more relatable to the story as though he has become part of what he has written?

  • SVS OG

    @smceccarelli I really like the second one! I'm not really analyzing my response so much as reacting, but I think it has to do with the dynamic pose and the boy's expression of wonder. He's looking right at that bird, which gives a great site line and makes the viewer's eye travel across the painting. It doesn't bother me at all that some parts are more realistic while others are flatter. It makes sense because it's all stuff that seems like it's going on in the child's mind. I like the handwriting details a lot, too.

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