Lisa Burvant, burvant illustration, @burvantill
I've been wanting to do something with a vintage postcard for a while and this seemed like a good fit. The family goes to the Oasis expecting an OASIS.
What's everyone working on right now? I'm pretending I am walking through a studio that we all share and looking over your shoulders at what you are working on. Post it! As in Grade school Show And Tell, NO CRITIQUES ARE ALLOWED HERE. Just walking through the studio keeping our mouths shut. We will allow a, that's cool or wow comment. Lol! You know, positive appreciation.
Personally I am all over the place. Summer is more difficult for me, because school is out. My solid schedule gets thrown in the wash with all of the swim towels. I have been drawing/sketching in my new Procreate app and I did start a small watercolor sketchbook while hiking.
I finished my draw 50 things challenge. I was VERY unhappy with my watercolor. After taking it into photoshop and TWEAKING it immensely, I am now happy to say I'm done. Finished not perfect! I'm gonna do it again though. I can do better, is what I'm franticly chanting in my head right now. I'm going to share my before and after photoshop. Just so you understand...Or I could just be behaving like a typical artist who hates their own art. Sorry for the rant, it's past my bedtime .
I am going to the SCBWI Spring event in NorCal in May and I signed up for a portfolio critique. Originally it was to be a review of my portfolio in PDF format and then an email from the art director with his or her comments. But we got lucky and the art director wanted to speak with us directly, so we all scheduled phone appointments and mine was this morning. I thought I would share how it went, maybe you could get something useful from it.
The art directors name is Laurent Linn. He was very pleasant to speak with. His criticisms were delivered skillfully with tact and thought. Just so you know, since I did not record this conversation, I will be paraphrasing his comments filtered through what I believe he was trying to tell me.
First, here is a low res compilation of the 15 images that were in the pdf portfolio so you know what I'm referring to.
First off, I asked him about my Kin•der People. They are the creatures in the first 7 images (from top left to right). I have been drawing them my whole life and asked if they were appropriate to include in a "children's book" illustrators portfolio. He said that it was good to have a few different styles to show on my website, but for now not to include so many in the physical/digital portfolio.
•Then he began his critique. Right off he said that the raccoon warriors image was a strong piece and wondered why it was on the last page. I took this to mean that even though I wanted to end strong, I should probably put some strong stuff at the beginning. People open a book and if they don't like what they see they move on. He warned to be careful of portraying weapons and he laughed as he said that the fact that the bear is lunching on the raccoons may be a little horrific for children.
•The self portrait piece (aka draw 50 things), he also thought was a strong piece. He mentioned that many people will put fan art in their portfolios to show off how they would do it and its okay since we aren't intending it for sale.
•The marching band animals: He said that it was a bit too cartoony, meaning that the children and the animals were caricatured so they come across as more fantastical and less realistic. He said that he would like it more if I had made the children and animals more real looking. Then he referenced the girl in the blue aquarium piece as being the more realistic that he was referring.
•He liked all my line work and wished I would push that further. I was happy to hear this as I have actually be pulling back on my ink thinking that I was scaring people away with all the black.
•The border collie and squirrel. He loved the expression on the dog's face(s) but cautioned that children are very literal and would probably see him as a multi-headed dog (ie, Fluffy from HP series) and advised that a motion blur would work better in this particular case.
•He didn't think that the moose and girl was a strong piece. It was a pleasant image but lacked narrative.
• He thought the first image with the kin•der style me balancing my universe reminded him too much of Seuss. And though I wanted to take that as a compliment he meant it as, you don't want your images to make someone think of someone else.
•We had run out of time by then, 15 minutes was definitely not enough time, but he graciously listened to one more question. He was bummed by the short duration as well.
I asked what does my portfolio lack? His answer was, I need to show children and animals. Granted there are children and animals in this portfolio, but he said more realistic, and in narrative scenes in everyday real life.
So there it is. Time to go adjust my lineup and put together my physical portfolio for the Spring Conference. If you have the opportunity I highly recommend doing something like this. I had to pay for it, and it was worth it.
I hope that this helps someone. Happy Hump Day!
After considering the work that I did this year I think this one was my most favorite to work on. It was part of a 2 painting colab project with @kaitlinmakes. I like the stylization of the raboons and the trees, the light and shadow. I don't know if this is my strongest piece, but I had the most fun creating it.
My superstition is about bird omens. Ravens or crows in particular (or Corvi). @lmrush did one that is similar , but there are a lot of variations of the folk poem so ours are not exactly the same. The one I have goes like this:
One for sorrow, two for mirth.
Three for death, four for birth.
Five for silver, six for gold.
Seven for a secret never to be told.
Eight for a wish, nine for a kiss.
Ten for a bird you must not miss.
Hello. My name is Lisa and I am artistically isolated. Admittance is the first step to recovery right? Lol
I am 48.83 years old. I have been making art for everyone consistently since I was 12, but have only recently admitted to myself that yes I am an artist (thank you Will Terry) because I have not become what I once dreamed of becoming, an illustrator. One unfortunate day in junior college that dream was squashed by a man telling us that none of the people in my class would ever make it as an illustrator. I believed the A-hole. I earned a BA in fine art and aside from doing graphic design for employers and art for friends and family I have done nothing with it. I lived an hour away from school so I never developed artist friends outside of school. My friends and family are supportive, but I NEED art people. I need unbiased people who will give me tough love and truth so that I can improve. I have had my face pushed up against the glass of my mortality*, I will no longer waste my life. I know I am late in the game, but I am determined.
I am not a close talker and I have good hygiene =)x.
I am a fairly normal person who is more than occasionally sarcastic.
Will you be my art friends?
*The Emperor of All Maladies- by Siddhartha Mukherjee
I did it! I sat down and actually wrote out a children's book that I have been stewing over for months now. I listened to a YouTube by @Jake-Parker, "You Need a Product not a Project", and he got me going. "Go do it! Go make that children's book." "...I don't know what they're waiting for, you could illustrate your book TODAY..." Man I'm glad I started listening to the 3Point perspective podcast. Since the first one, I have been absorbing as much stuff from those three guys as I can. LIKE A SPONGE! lol.
I also finished this little illustration for a jimbobdrawingshow Instagram prompt today, fat nomad.
@Amber-Lynn-Benton 's dream portfolio vs her own portfolio was so inspiring I had to watch How to Discover your Style. I have learned quite a lot about myself and it wasn't fun... just kidding. This was a very interesting exercise. I thought I would share my findings.
For years I have been saving awesome images on Pinterest in a board called burvant ill daily art pick. I was fairly consistent for a while so I had a lot of images to choose from. It was difficult to weed it down to the top 20, but I followed @Lee-White 's instructions and choose the images that would push me in the direction that I want to go. I had a bunch of similar images so it was easier to weed those out to one each. Anyway, here's what I ended up with.
And here is a grouping of my art. I had to pick through some older stuff to get 20 good pieces.
Here is my Dream Portfolio Evaluation
•Recognizable objects are drawn wonky (skewed), but still recognizable.
•Overlapping patterns and detail. Textures. Busy. A lot to look at.
•Surreal or stylized
•Muted palette. No heavy saturation
•Contrast without losing focus
Mine vs Dream
What do they have in common?
What does the Dream have that I don’t?
•Characters are whimsical without appearing “cartoony”
•I lack the ability to harness the light.
•Mine are flat in comparison.
•It has dark darks without loosing the light.
•Pattern, texture & detail
Now I'm going to pick my most favorite images from the dream portfolio and do master copies. I'll post those here and talk about how that went.
I am most curious what I will take away from this lesson, as I wanted to make some changes to my current portfolio anyway. Looking at my current lineup, I think that I have a steady style, but i just want/need to shake things up a bit. I still have so much to learn... and I would really like to get a job. =)x
I just uploaded to the Google link. Thank you, again, for doing this. Feeling the love. ️