Really did not think I would make it in time!!
Hello! I'm currently an illustrator working for a children's product company with lots of experience in educational media and magazines. Last year I illustrated 6 books and began co-writing and authoring my own.
My current goal is to land a literary agent and become a published author/illustrator.
Really did not think I would make it in time!!
My story is about a fairy whose village is under attack from froggy invaders. She has to travel across the island - through frog territory - to the ancient lemon tree. Her village needs the juice from the lemons to ward off the frogs. Will she make it in time?
(just noting I just edited the file so it's a JPEG now)
Hi all! So last year I started working on my portfolio with the goal of having ten completely new pieces in my portfolio. I competed in every contest from November through July. Of the pieces I made I had one win and got a critique of some sort in the arena for all but one. So now that I'm pulling the final ten together for my portfolio I'm making the edits from the arena critiques. I thought it would at very least be interesting, and possibly helpful to see them. Happy to hear and additional comments or feedback!
Here we go:
The feedback from Lee here was that I left a huge empty dead space in the middle . The suggested correction was too either crop in on the kids or add text. I tried cropping the kids but it just made me miss seeing the bedroom! And it felt to centered and symmetrical that way. So instead I'm adding text and claiming it as a book cover
December: “...as she listened closely, she overheard them talking about her...” So this one actually one that month and also had the biggest critique! I was still trying to figure out my style here and it was very rushed . Feedback from Will and Jake: Spend some more time on the character design of the yeti, the scarf doesn't make sense and the feet could be more well defined. The background feels like a cafeteria but seems empty. The wall behind them is necessary but isn't reading correctly.
“The tracks in the snow were unlike anything Will had ever seen before.” This one made it to the arena and did well. There was no negative feedback. Lee said it was just "luck of the draw" So I did not make any edits to this one.
February: nightfall. This was a failed style experiment. It's been sent to the land of illustrations past. R.I.P
March: “Everything was rattling, falling apart and breaking!!!”
This one also made it to the arena. Feedback: Everything is spaced very evenly and are similar sizes. Maybe move the girl to the right and vary more of the size and spacing of the objects.
April: "Lisa’s robot invention worked great, until it did this…"
This one also made it to the arena and was given the "luck of the draw" feedback, so I didn't make any edits.
This one did not make it to the arena, but when they did the quick feedback for everyone it also received the "luck of the draw" feedback.
And then I took a break in June so I could open my online store and spent my time focusing on smaller spot illos. For my current portfolio 6 of the 10 pieces came from the contests, and one from the podcast illo I got to do as a winner. So 7 of 10 came directly from SVSLearn prompts.
My take-a-ways from the experience: I was struggling to build my portfolio because I was lacking ideas and inspiration and I personally really need a deadline otherwise I procrastinate forever. Doing the contests were INCREDIBLY helpful for building my portfolio and I do feel like I've improved from doing it.
I also listened to some of the classes while I worked on these pieces and instead of doing the homework assignments I applied the knowledge from the courses to the pieces as I went. This helped since I work full time and have two toddlers and I do freelance projects. I really needed to prioritize my time.
Having a critqiue group is AMAZING, posting stuff here is helpful and awesome, but being able to have a group of other artists that you can quickly show ideas or see if something is working was VITAL for me.
My least favorite piece was the one that won (It was really rushed and I didn't feel confident in the final rendering). But this really taught me how truly valuable concept is over technical draftmanship. However, even if you have a fun idea and good draftsmanship, everyone has a personal aesthetic and you might not make it into the arena or win. That doesn't make it a bad piece, and it may even be some peoples favorite piece. In someways that makes me feel frustrated like shooting without a target, but then I remember that I'm making these pieces for me and my portfolio and it's OKAY. It's a lot better to make pieces that I'm excited about and are fun for me personally, than to try and appease everyone or to make art for the purpose of winning.
"Cover your mouth when you sneeze!"
Honestly don't know how the judges are going to narrow it down this month. So many amazing entries~!
@Declan-Konesky so they aren’t as good, but I’ve used Adobe illustrator in the past to make books using art boards, and I believe photoshop now also lets you make art boards . Not sure about Ipad capabilities, but I’ve used them in a pinch
@Tom-Burchell I love the composition and character design!
I’m kind of wondering about her expression though. Right now she looks kinda suspicious but she hasn’t seen the bears so I’m not totally sure what she is reacting to.
I’m wondering if it would be stronger emotionally to have her fully happy and ignorant, or to be looking more towards the bears like she just saw them and it is the moment right before she reacts
Is just a little unclear right now
Edit: I just saw the mouse, so maybe make sure that pops later but even then I’m not fully getting what emotion she’s expressing ️
Also, just wondering if the bears should be bigger? I think right now we see about the same amount of her as we do the bears, might be fun if it was more 1/3 girl 2/3 bears
So fun though, it’s going to be a great piece!
@Matthew-Oberdier I love Pinterest this is a board I’ve created for reference