Monday, August 10, 2015

Abe Lincoln Illustration Process

I always like seeing how people do their work. So here is a process I followed on a recent illustration project.

After drawing a bunch of thumbnail sketches I choose the layout I like best and rough it in at the basic size I want.  I am not too worried about fine details and textures and things yet.

As I refine the sketch I am looking at reference photos to make sure the details are accurate.

I refine the whole sketch until it is just about how I want it.

I do a series of value studies to get the lighting right for the mood and context of the illustration. For this one I really liked the middle study with the light coming from behind him in the fireplace.

Now I start to work into the sketch with some hash marks.  For me I like a more scribbled look and I get a little sloppy in places, and that's ok.

I continue working and really establish my value pattern based on my value study that I liked before. I am really focussed on the midtones and darks here with plans to come back in later to add in (or erase out) the lights and whites as needed.

I have come in and erased some areas and added a white pencil over the top to really make the light areas shine.

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