Warning : it's a long post, I recorded all my process...
Jazza class!!! Yipppeeee!!! I don’t have time to do it now, but I just waste more time being distracted by the ideas than what it will take me to do the actual project. Sooo..... Here we go :
Medium, media, etc. : As for media and audience, I’ll go for a children’s story book for ages 3-6 (32 pages total). So a fairly short story where each line can become a visual representation of the event. I’ll go with a mix digital and traditional watercolour + ink illustration for the execution.
Title : Crystelle LaPousse and the Garden Council
Story and character : Crystelle, our protagonist, is a little girl who doesn’t have any hair. She is a happy little girl until she goes to school for the very first time. Her first day was terrible and she doesn’t want to go to school anymore.
On her second day of school, she cried so much not to go that Crystelle parents agreed to look for a tutor for the time being and she had to spend the whole week playing outside in the garden. While playing, she found a crystal ! A magic crystal! When she holds on to it, she can understand the birds, the insects, she can talk to them. In the garden, there was Mr. Owl, a very articulated fellow ; Miss Racoon, a funny happy loving mom of 9! Her Majesty of the garden hive. She made many new friends, and none of them cared about hair, although some cared about fur or feathers, for practical reasons…
The garden council, the band of Crystelle’s garden friends all debated, long and hard, and concluded that human hairs don’t serve a purpose other than being pretty. And, nature is very good at making things pretty. Birds and insects gathered the prettiest leaves and flowers from the garden on Christelle’s head to build a magnificent sculpture of perfectly placed vegetation – a giant flower crown. With that glorious crown from the garden council, she could go to school. She had the confidence to go back!
When asked «why she was wearing so many flowers on her head», Crystelle would simply say, like mr Owl said during the garden council : Because flowers are superior to hair, they are more beautiful and smell better than hair.
Everybody at school was left wondering how Crystelle managed to create a perfectly fresh flower sculpture for her head every single day…
This is the artwork that inspired the story. I made it last week doing yasmina's class. I plan on zoning in on the style using those as main focus.
If you have managed to read all that, and liked it, or have some fun idea for the 'garden council debate on the purpose of humain hair', please feel free to leave a comment ! :D
Edit, day 2:
Botanical studies undergo... more skillshare lol...
After another night thinking about it, that style of watercolor is too heavy for the esthetics I'm going for.
Now the question is... to line or not to line... or how to line. The garden won't look so good with lining, but the character do.... IDK what to do!
Day 3 will be on character sketches, so I will have to decide on it.
Day 3 : Switch to digital for the exploration phase, watercolour paper is just too expensive. While in the digital world I also made some font research for something that's looking fun, young, joyful... I found a couple of candidates.
1st sheet was pretty ugly..lets call it a warm up. I mean, I needed a cute, young BALD girl.
I was already leaning towards the chibi type, but I had no specific shape for the head or the body.
By this sheet I decided the rounded hex shape for the head and the proportions. Bean body, 3 head height, leg and arm attachement to the side.
Once the general shape and silouette was decided, I went and tested color and shading... I didn't really keep versions and just played around with different combinations, just to see how it would read on digital even tho I'll make most of it in watercolor.
So, here is my result for day 3, I present to you Crystelle ;)
She is young, cute and BALD ! I'm so happy, I think she really looks like a children's book character!
Now to test mixing water colour and digital. I used a watercolor crystal, some leafs, grass and clouds to spice up the plain background. Some (lots)of colour adjustments later, I redone some shading the make the whole thing match.
Very satisfaying day 3!
Step undergo right now is poses and expressions for Crystelle, I need her to be sad, surprised, angry, shy... and some more.
I discovered that she can't really raise her hand too high since the head is so huge! All and all the testing phase went well.
I'm starting to test some vegetation hairdo next and then I'll go back to watercolor.
Day 4 : hair and style....
I've decided on a division of media (was thinking about it all night !!!). I'll make body plans and face as flat watercolors (no shading, no line and using ''true colors'' as if there was no lighting) but lots of texture, and i'll do the shading and line in photoshop. I think this will be the most efficient workflow now that I know how much work it is to color adjust.
That's the last test for Crystelle. I made her a new haircut
I've made a lot of progress even tho there's not a lot to show for it...
I've followed some more skillshare (Cat Coquillette and Silvia Ospina) classes to work with watercolor and digital. I,ve made 3 sheets of botanical assets for hairdos and garden. With Sylvia's method, I've got enough to last me a life time. It also gave me an idea on how to make the character assets. I'm starting on that right now.
He is my dismembered Crystelle lol (this was 4 x 9x12"):
Reassembled and shaded :
Finally, here is crystelle with her vegetal hair :
Ouf! That's 1 character!
It was the main one, so I took my sweet time zoning in on the style, what to line and what not to. The shading/texture style also. I'm really happy with the result. It really feels unique!
Next is mister owl. He was a lot easier, just like jazza said.
I present to you the wise autority of the garden council : Mr Owl.
I'll be doing 1 or 2 sheets in watercolour for him too. I think playing with the textures of the feathers will be lots of fun!
Here's my 1st render of Mr Owl.
There's only miss racoon and the Queen bee left to create...!
Last 3 days were not fun... My skillshare account was deleted O.O
When I got back to the project, I was not into it... and miss Racoon was hiding herself.
Many sheets later, there she was.
Only my queen bee left...
At last, the very last character of the set, my queen bee :
First coloring in photoshop....
Now needs to be put as a few watercolor sheets
And once that is done, there's gonna be the very last step for the final work, I'm still not sure of what it could be. A page of the book, the book cover, a clean sheet presenting each character... who knows.
IDK what day it is anymore, something like a month. Scanner is dead, sad sad. Anyway,I managed.
Here is the last character, her majesty of the garden hive:
Still no clue about the final work tho. My new scanner will be here in a week or so.