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Night on the swings

Hi, my name is Jeff. Honestly I've never done anything that has to do with design, illustrations, or anything artistic in my life, but recently I promised to make this a year of doing something creative at least once a day. I started learning Illustrator a few weeks ago, and I think I'm falling in love :)

Finished Illustration: 

POST 1

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Quiet

For my project I chose "quiet". 

I tried to think of times in my life when it feels quiet, not just physically but mentally as well. One memory that popped out immediately was going on a walk with my dog every night to the park. My dog is getting old, so he lies down on the field, and quietly gazes off to the distance, as if he's contemplating his life. 

Meanwhile, I like to sit on the swings and just spend time with my dog. It's probably one of the most peaceful moments of my daily life. So I decided to try to make a illustration that conveys this moment. 

Sketch

Here's my initial sketch. I just focused on the shapes and composition, except for the tree because I've been practicing drawing those recently and I couldn't resist. I thought it would be cool to physically isolate the swings in space (probably the quietest place you could go to, right?). 

I'm excited to bring this to life with the upcoming lessons on color and texture. 

Any suggestions or critiques would be welcome! 

POST 2

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Color 


I chose this color palette to start off: 


I used the analogic color scheme to make the palette, because I thought it would contribute to the calm, serene atmosphere that I wanted to convey through the illustration. After that, I used the color guide tool shown in the video from unit 3, and followed Brad's advice to just go with my gut to come up with the palette. 

I included a more purple-ish one in there to add some subtle visual interest (I don't know how I'll incorporate it yet though), and a bluish white for the moon and maybe to use as lighting (?). 

I'm sure I'm going to tweak and change it around once I actually start digitizing my sketch. 

POST 3

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Digitized Sketch

Here is my first attempt at digitizing the sketch. I coudn't decide if the portrait or landscape looked better. Right now I'm leaning toward the portrait, because I like the vertical space between the floating land and the moon, it feels more natural to me. Here's both:

I tried to leave out most of the details, so I can save it for after I learn more about texturing and patterns in the next unit. As I was digitizing the sketch, I realized the composition in my sketch didn't look quite right. There needed to be more feeling of space between the land and the moon, so I decided to put them on opposite corners.

The stars are placeholders for now, since I don't know how I want to approach them yet. I know I want them to be subtle though. The colors still don't look right, especially the tree leaves. I think the purple sticks out too much right now. I'm planning on messing with it some more. 

The comments really, really helped out in figuring out the composition and the colors (Thanks, Rocio and Katie!).

Going forward, I would like to add some warmer colors because it does look too cold right now. I'm hoping to incorporate them subtly through textures. I'm planning on continuing to tweak the composition, sizes, and colors of everything I have so far too. 

I also still haven't added the girl on the swings yet. I'm having trouble making the shapes look right. Humans are really hard. 

Like always, and critiques and suggestions would be really appreciated!

POST 4 

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I changed up the color palette a little bit, and I like how this looks more, but it definitely feels too cold now. I'm planning on trying to balance it out using textures and brushes with warmer colors. I also added the girl on the swings and it turned out much better than I thought it would. Making human shapes is really hard! Started applying textures in Illustrator. 

POST 5 

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Finishing Touches


Unfortunately I've run out of time to work on this project. But I'm pretty happy with the final illustration!

I think I got to use almost every technique Brad taught in section 4. I made the moon much bigger than last time, and I think it looks way better (Once again, thanks Katie!). 

I don't think I'll have time to work on this for a pretty long time, but I would love some critiques and suggestions! This was an awesome learning experience. 

POST 6

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Update

I told myself I wouldn't look at this for a while but I couldn't resist. I updated the girl on the swing because it didn't look as good as I wanted:

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