illustration is art

Archive for October, 2013

Chloe WIP 4



I’ve done most of the basic groundwork, now it’s time to refine/balance/tweek it all. As you can see, I’ve been gradually dropping the original outlines. Jeez, that top was slow and, yes, tedious… but, damn it looks great! I’m very pleased with this, so far. I love the overall softness of tone. One of the things I’ll have to do is introduce a wider variation in that tonal range, brighter highlights and darker shadow, but still keep it all soft and delicious (:

The soundtrack for this leg of the journey was: Fiona Apple, Fleetwood Mac, Girl in a Coma, Kasey Chambers, Tanya Donelly, Tosca, Tracy Thorn, Jenny Lewis, J J Cale, Lou Reed, Marina and the Diamonds, The Mahavishnu Orchestra, and Mirah. Two of those, first J J Cale, now Lou Reed, have died this year; very sad and a huge loss to music.


Chloe WIP 3



Since the last WIP I have pretty much finished her hair, and have begun working on her very detailed top. This is a very slow process, lots of subtle variation of tone, but all in a fairly narrow range of contrast, can’t have any glaringly wide variation. Still, it’ll be well worth the effort, if what I’ve done so far is any indication (:

This stage’s soundtrack was Everything But The Girl and Entheogenic.

Chloe WIP 2


Chloe progresses gorgeously. I’m going to do her arms, face and hair first, then slowly block in her top. That way, if I feel I’m not capable of doing a good enough job of her top, the picture will be too good to trash, so I’ll have to improvise a compromise top… even as it is now, it looks pretty cool.

The soundtrack for this has been, so far: Enya, Ennio Morricone, Eumir Deodato and Evanescence. Apparently Chloe’s favorite musicians are Rihanna and Britney Spears, so, unfortunately she is not perfect, and there is no way I’ll be listening to her musical tastes to facilitate inspiration.

Chloe WIP

Chloe WIP

Soooo… leaping from an ambitious project to… an even more ambitious one! This is going to be a painting of the heart-wrenchingly gorgeous, and hugely talented, Chloe Moretz. I adore Chloe, ever since seeing her in Kick Ass, which she totally owned, making the lead character look like a dick… oh, hang on, he was a pathetic dick, wasn’t he. What cinched my adoration and admiration of her talent, was seeing her in Hugo and Let Me In, which are poles apart, with Kick Ass in the middle, in terms of content/audience demographic. She has gone from cute girl with a quirky smile to drop-dead gorgeous teenager (with a quirky smile), yet has maintained her honest charm. Long may she rein!

I have already done a painting of Chloe as Hit Girl, here, called Cutest Killer. It was my third attempt at Corel Painter, and I was very pleased with it. This one will be done entirely with beautiful Photoshop CS5. If you google ‘Chloe Moretz Interview Magazine’ (images), you will see several versions of the image I am using for this. This is a stunning photo of Chloe, that looks nothing like the Chloe we’d previously seen… she is doing more and more of these spreads that showcase her ‘adult’ look. Anyway, what will be super challenging to do, will be her top… eek! I have learned that I can do things this complex/difficult, but that I have to chip away at them, and that they will start off looking like shit. So, heres the starting rough.

Sam, Trish & Frazey



Well… this is 99.9% finished! It’s gotten to the stage where I’m making largely un-noticable adjustments, so I think I’ll just say it’s done… for now.

BeGoods WIP 2

begoods WIP2


I’d say this is now 9/10th’s finished… possibly. I have no idea how much time I’ve spent on these girls, a lot. This piece is significant, in that I started it last year in Corel Painter, not long after I’d discovered that software, and was totally enamored with/of/by it. This post and the previous, when I re-started this work, are done in stunning, gorgeous, awesome Photoshop, which my infatuation with Painter made me realise was far superior to Painter, yet it was my infatuation with/use of Painter that taught me the skills I’d not had, but now have in Photoshop. There is a reason Photoshop is so damned expensive; it’s awesome!

In the previous post I listed the bluegrass/folk/blues music I was listening to as I worked on this. I have extremely eclectic tastes (and a huge music collection) and, as the time spent on this increased, I drifted from the initial Be Goods sound—the soundtrack to this now includes Cowboy Junkies, Girl In A Coma, Imogen Heap, Corin Tucker, Cranes, Cocteau Twins, Dr John and Warren Zevon. My art and my music tastes are irrevocably linked, I could not create art without gorgeous music… well, perhaps I could, but it wouldn’t feel right.

Be Good Tanya’s WIP

The Be Good Tanya's WIP

I started this in July last year, at a time when my school workload (Honours year) prohibited it’s completion. Here and here are the previous posts.

I knew it was going to be a lot of work, and it was simply too much to concentrate on, last year, so it got side-lined. I didn’t quite forget it, but as time went on, finishing it became a more daunting, less likely outcome.

I was reminded of it by the amazingly talented Patricia Awapara who has been going further and further back in my archives, and who recently ‘liked’ the previous posts of these wonderful musicians. I have been struggling for creative inspiration lately, so thought finishing this might be a good exercise. I’ve been working on it off and on for the last few days, and feel it’s probably 3/4 finished, now.

Whilst working on it, I’ve listened to a steady diet of gorgeous-voiced female musicians/groups playing/singing bluegrass/blues/folk; The Be Good Tanya’s, Eilen Jewell, and Crooked Still… there are banjo’s playing in my dreams (: