Contemplating Quiet

Contemplating Quiet - student project

It's been fun seeing everyone's amazing work. I'm still in the sketch phase and playing around with a few ideas.

Started off with a mind map. I liked the idea that both quiet and loud can hold a lot of power. 

Contemplating Quiet - image 1 - student project

The first concept I tried to illustrate was the feeling of being tucked in with a good book, cozy fireplace, while it's cold and silent outside. I wanted it to be from the perspective of the person on the couch.

Contemplating Quiet - image 2 - student project

Then, I thought about zen and meditation, which brings a lot of inner quiet for me. I've actually be asked to *someday* design this book on zen teachings for my teacher. I thought about what I might do for the cover. I thought of the circle, which has a lot of significance in zen and is also one of the first drawings you do for zen calligraphy. 

Contemplating Quiet - image 3 - student project

THEN, I thought about my experiences in zen and found this picture (I'm much more comfortable as a photographer than illustrator!) which I took at one of our retreats. I want to capture the feeling of being under a canopy of trees, where you feel like you're all alone and it's sort of dark, but there are also bright rays of sunlight shining through to hint of all that lies beyond.

Contemplating Quiet - image 4 - student project

The problem is I could not figure out how to illustrate this graphically, for the life of me! My sketches failed. I even tried to mess with the picture and see if I could create silouettes or shapes (or SOMETHING) that I could scan and make shapes on top of, but none had the effect that I wanted. The beauty of this picture are the many subtle layers and play of light..and I don't feel experienced enough as an illustrator to transfer that feeling and effect into a graphic yet. Any tips or advice would be much appreciated!!

I really wish I could realize my last concept, but have yet to have a breakthrough. I might just go with one of the first two ideas instead..