Friday, June 3, 2011


Here's a quick look at some of the process behind this illo for a.d. SooJin Buzelli at Plansponsor Mag.
Her brief for this story on hedge funds was as always short and sweet leaving me lotsa elbow room for ideas: 
Flexibility, Liquidity, Being able to move in and out of investments easily. 
I came up with 3 ideas to send through for approval. The first idea was based on old tent show canvases which I really love. Flexi-Bill, geddit?

My second idea was a bit more conceptual and involved a liquid dude who is so flexible that he's able to carry himself around in a bucket. 

And finally the winner, an octopus who's able to easily move in and out of a his treasure chest/investments. I suspect this one got the go-ahead because it represented the "investment" aspect of the brief clearly, something the other two ideas maybe lacked. 

So idea settled upon, it was time to move to the final. I copied over the back of the rough on tracing paper so I could transfer the image onto each layer of paint throughout the process. The colours seemed to lend themselves to the subject matter. The water was either going to be green or blue I figured so I had to pick another colour to match with that (maroon) and the rest would sort itself out along the way.

I built up the layers using acrylics and scratched and scraped in the textures along the way. Finishing up in photoshop allows me to be pretty fearless about this because I can always tidy up later on. 

Because deadlines are often tight I've developed a hi-tech speed drying process ie placing my lamps over the work...

Here's the piece about 3/4 of the way through. Just needs some of the sea critter details added and we're almost ready to scan it in and tweak it in photoshop.

I didn't want to another shade of maroon to finish off the treasure chest so I decided to add some halftone to create a nice vintage feel in photoshop. I have some great old scanned letratone that has a nice ragged look to it. Then it was just cleaning up some of the places where I'd gone in too hard with texture and it was ready to send off. 

Thanks again to SooJin. Her succinct art direction and smart choices along the way always bring out the best in her contributors. 

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