Noted Festival Artwork Day 1 – May 4th, 2017.

This is the artwork I drew for the May 4 events of the 2017 Noted Festival in Canberra.

Burrows and Luciana Harrison, in conversation with Nick Delatovic for the Let’s Get Lyrical session. These players are on Triple J Unearthed as Pocket Fox for you to check out. Their music is ethereal and gorgeous.

 

Alexandra Neill for the Mail Club session.

 

Blemish Books’ with Triptych Poets for the Pulpture Project.

Artists included: Nicci Haynes, Angharad Lodwick and Brooke McEachern.

 

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New Artwork!

I was fortunate to be commissioned to create website headers for the Noted Festival in Canberra in May. Here are the images.

CABINET OF CURIOSITIES – which is about tools writers use.

WORDS BY NOTED STAFF

NEWS

WHAT I’M READING

I went minimalist with the colouring on these to keep the images bold and eye-catching. Hope you like them.

Shauna O’Meara

Lackington’s Magazine Issue 12 Artwork

lackingtonsissue12

I was fortunate enough to have the chance to create artwork for Rhonda Eikamp’s story – Zoopoiesis, With Mountains –  in Lackington’s Magazine Issue 12. It is an amazing story and I hope I did it justice. You can pick up an e-copy for $2.99 on the Lackington’s site.

 

 

Angry … Cows?

A friend challenged me to an exercise in creative concept art – draw some Angry Birds (yes, as in the game). But make them cows. Angry cows.

To meet the brief, I took a look at the original Angry Birds characters. The main thing you’ll notice about these characters is how very simple each design is, in terms of outline (most are based on a circle) and basic body features. The other thing you will notice is how unique each character is and, therefore, how easy each is to distinguish from the other characters, even in tiny, screen form. Angry Birds characters differ markedly in one or more of the following:

  • size – from the tiny Blue Bird to the Chubby White Bird and Big Red Bird.
  • shape – many of the characters are based on a round body model, but some are egg-shaped or even triangular, with differing tail or crest configurations that make them recognisable even in silhouette form.
  • colour – aside from Red Bird and Big Red Bird, all of the characters are swiftly recognisable by their colours, which is essential on a tiny game screen.
  • personalities – even though most of the birds are, as advertised, angry to be sure, there are also ones that look worried and determined and even a bit crazy.

The following character sheet was my take on the brief:

angrycows-angrybirds-colour

Here, I have gone with different colours, shapes (while most are modeled on the circle, a couple have been modeled on the inverted triangle and on the trapezium), sizes and outlines in order to make each character distinct. I have also varied the personalities, from the angry red bull and crazy orange bull to the suspicious yellow pineapple-esque cow, sad blue Ankole-Watusi and sleepy Highland Cow.

Note – for extra cowish brownie points, I also looked up breeds of cow, searching for unique types that I could include as characters. The first two cows are Highland Cattle – these have wide horns and amazing, long fringes that make for interesting character opportunities. The central, blue cow is modeled on the Ankole-Watusi (these are incredible looking cattle – definitely worth Googling). The black and white cow is based on the Holstein-Friesian – the classic, spotted dairy cow. The pineapple cow … was not based on a real cow breed (sorry about that).

Below are the characters in silhouette.

Walt Disney animation (particularly in the early days – Donald, Goofy, Mickey Mouse etc.) designed their characters based around the principle that they should be unique enough to be easily recognisable in silhouette form. Thus, you can recognise Mickey by his ears (the distinct shape that is, even now, the Disney logo), Goofy by his teeth and hat and stance and Pluto by his narrow ears and whip tail and the bump on his head (as distinct from the shapes of other canine characters). The same holds true for character design (especially casts of characters) today.

angrycows-shapes

Note – the twin cows (the green one and the black-and-white) have the same silhouette. If I drew these again, I would place the bangle on the opposite foot of one to make them unique in silhouette.

Enjoy.

If you want to catch more of my art, please check out my Flickr portfolio.

If you like my stuff and would like to hire me on a freelance basis for concept or commercial or book cover or book interior art, please check out my contact page.

Rats on the Brain

inyourface

This is a sketch of a hooded rat that I drew after work last night.

The top picture is the raw pencil-work. For all their commonplace simplicity, I love the handling of basic lead pencils the most. They render fur and shadow marvelously.

The bottom image is the same picture scanned and coloured digitally.

rat-inyourface-colourIf you like my work, feel free to check out my portfolio on Flickr.

The New Header

I tend to change my headers based on art or stories I have coming out. This one is a header I designed based on a short story I wrote for the CSFG anthology, The Never Never Land. This is already out in book form, but will be out as an ebook later this year.

The story is called To Look Upon a Dream Tiger and it is a tale of a photographer who journeys into remote Tasmanian wilderness in the hunt for a thylacine and finds something that may or may not be the creature he is after.

tygertitle