Here is my entry!
Hey, I'm Taylor Ackerman, I am a children's illustrator making work under the name Studio Looong (an ode to my small, horizontally-gifted studio mates). I love making work that is whimsical, easy to relate to, and just a tiny bit off-beat. Knobby people, bug-eyed creatures and quirky narratives are some of my favorite subjects.
I graduated from Bradley University in 2015 with a B.F.A. in Graphic Design and now I work as a Designer at the University of Illinois in Champaign, Illinois. I spend every minute I can outside of work drawing and illustrating. I strive to become a published illustrator, specializing in Children's Publishing.
Here is my entry for the June contest!
For Mermay I am drawing an unconventional mer-granny and her cat-fish. I want to turn this into a little series where I have this piece and I draw a handful of catfish portraits like the ones behind her in the sketch as stand alone pieces. I'm not sure how I feel about the catfish I have on granny's lap. I feel like it's lacking the character that the other two have. I might re-draw it.
My friend Hayden has revamped and relaunched his character design challenge and is putting out one character description a week, this is my take on the first one; Ozmo, leader of the merchant guild. Adding color later this week! if you want to join follow @cqprompts on twitter or instagram.
I think that what you have going on with the path is flattening out the composition in an unnatural way. There is great perspective with the rocks getting smaller but that dirt path isnt following the same logic. It's almost as wide up by the person as it is down by the large rock. The rough edges of the grass should scale too, becoming less jagged as it reseeds into the distance.
Quick fix for the path width could be to take out some of the grass in the bottom left.
In this episode of Graphic Novel TK they go into time estimating and scheduling, may be a helpful refrence: https://soundcloud.com/graphicnoveltk/episode-11-how-to-make-a-graphic-novel
@Miranda-Branley it may help to look at some reference of trees and pick out what variety of tree you are going for - is it an oak or a maple? What is the shape of the leaves? What is the branch structure like? I think the texture that you have on the trunk is looking good but what sticks out most to me is the shape of the trunk and the lack of branches. Your tree is very straight, in real life, tree trunks tend to be a bit more of an hourglass shape with the roots flaring out just a little at the bottom and branches starting to come out at the top before you get to the leaves. With how close your foliage is in the foreground, you aren't going to be able to get away with not drawing any leaves but a little detail will go a long way. If you draw 4-5 leaves with a bit more definition and then just suggest the rest of them with some edge lines or texture, I think it would blend a lot better with the level of detail you're putting into the people.
@krish-iyer If you are going to go to a liberal arts school with an art program, SAT/ACT and GPA will still play a big factor - you have to meet the general admissions requirements for the school to get in. Some liberal arts schools will look at a portfolio and others will not even require one. Colleges that specialize in art degrees are USUALLY a little less focused on grades and test scores, putting most of their consideration into the portfolio, but it really differs school-to-school so once you find a few you like, make sure to read their specific admissions requirements.
If you want to get into the animation industry, I would look at art schools in Los Angeles, CA. Since the film industry is centered in LA, the art schools there will likely have more connections with the animation studios in the area which will help you get a job in the end. Art Center and CalArts are known to have great programs. Disney is based in Florida and they end up hiring a lot of people from Ringling, so if your dream is to work for Disney, that may be a good place to start.
If you are wanting to go to a liberal arts school, UCLA and USC also have top-ranked animation and illustration programs.
It may help to think about what you would like to do after graduation and where you would like to work. If you have a specific studio or network that would be your "dream gig," look up where their illustrators and animators graduated from. Normally you'll find that 70-80% of them all went to the same school.
Bummed I couldn't participate in this one but this month I moved cross-country (and we packed and moved everything ourselves to minimize COVID risk). There was just a bit too much chaos for me to get it done in time, really appreciate the invite though!
I think what you should do depends on your goals.
I would recommend that if you are trying to really soak in the techniques covered in the class, go through the exercises as they are explained. Do the assignments as they are written, afterwords you can apply parts of what you learned into your own art style.
If you just want a few tips on character design and are more concerned about getting pieces for your portfolio than exploring new techniques and developing different skills, then change the exercises to fit your current way of designing characters and do what you need to do to get the portfolio piece you want.
Neither of these ways are wrong but personally I feel like I get a lot more out of a class when I am in more of a practice and learning mindset and focus less on trying to get portfolio-worthy pieces out of the lessons. I find that challenging my current workflow and style biases normally pushes me to make better work in the long run, even if I am not in love with my practice assignments.
Make sure to ask "Are you interested in working with me on future projects and if so, how should I follow up with you? If not, are there any other AD's at your house that you feel would be a better fit for my work and how can I reach them?"
For me personally, I'd put it at a 5 or 6. Once I return to commuting to work, closed captions would allow me to watch a lesson while on the train or bus without having to use headphones, but personally I like listening to the audio.
For people that are deaf/hard of hearing, I'd put it at a 11/10. SVS could reach new audiences that do not currently consider your classes or subscriptions because they are video-based and lack captions. If you caption in different languages this could also open the classes up to people who's english may not be very strong.
I've used El-co color labs in the past, they have a poster special on larger sizes and a quantity discount that would make 8x10's $1 a piece. All archival, really good quality photo prints.
I got a desk arm mount for my kamvas so I can tuck it up out of the way when I'm not drawing, I highly recommend getting a good arm mount for people who want the 22" but don't have the largest desk. They should be compatible with all the same ones as Wacom cintiques are so look up reviews - there are plenty!