Recently, having flicked through The Writers’ Magazine, I came across a couple of competitions which I decided to give a go.
Firstly, there was The Big Idea Competition http://thebigideacompetition.co.uk/ which had a focus on pitching an idea for a story and then there was http://www.stratfordliteraryfestival.co.uk/article/picture-book-competition which required several sketches and a couple of double paged spreads. I have taken a lot of my inspiration from visits to the Kitty Cafe in Nottingham and just thought I would share some of my sketches with you…
I don’t find out the result until next month, but I am keeping my fingers crossed. I was busy sketching at home & on my lunch breaks at work. I often had reference books to hand, including those that detail how to draw fashion and the history of shop frontages. It was fun & challenging to draw with the aim of achieving something at the end of it all and I think it gives you that extra push to really put your heart & soul into the project.
Look out for competitions and if they tempt you, go for it! You never know!
Following some time dedicated to drawing up some fuller stories based on my imagery, I decided to start experimenting with some cover ideas.
I have stuck with a basic cover which is quite boldly stating who the main characters are within the story…
whilst contrasting them with some lightly applied watercolours in the background.
I have merely used my own handwriting for the font on the cover. I wanted something quite bold, but not something that takes focus away from the image…
My final experiment, consisted of an idea for a series of stories, “The Holiday Series.” For this experiment, the format is slightly different, seeing me revert to my traditional style of working to create the colour for the background, whilst also dabbling with a digital font found on Photoshop…
I hope that 2018 brings more success for Tiger and Friends, whilst also ensuring that I remain inspired and creative. I hope to go to new places and visit attractions that will inspire my work.
I hope that 2018 is a wonderful year for you all and I shall hopefully be updating you on Tiger, very early on in the new year.
This came about over my Christmas break, simply from a bit of unrelated doodling involving a book purchased a while back. I’m a fan of buying doodle based books in order to get the creative juices going and they don’t cost the earth either.
Whilst busy sabotaging some imagery offered up in the book I was using, I was inspired by the idea of implanting my characters onto old photographs, hence having a look into how their ancestors lived in the past.
I felt I would show this as an example of how the most random projects can lead to something inspiring. If you can’t be bothered to apply colour and collage, just pick up a pen and it will lead you towards projects which might just tempt you.
The next book that I shall be buying, will be the Children’s Writers & Artists Handbook 2017! Here’s hoping that 2017 will prove to be a successful year. I shall be taking a week’s leave from my full time job soon, in order to devote time to my illustration submissions, so here’s hoping all goes well.
On his latest adventure, Tiger has been visiting space. Joining Tiger on this adventure was his canary friend who is determined to race him to the moon. But who will win?
I had a lot of fun working with this story, as it allowed me to experiment with overlaying, patterned plastic sheets, sequins and pastel dusting effects to really capture the twinkles and atmosphere with what we associate with being out there.
I also felt that this story used two of our favourite characters well, allowing them to teach about planets on their journey whilst providing the fun element of the race.
As previously mentioned, I have also been dedicating some time to stories based around my bird characters and their associated characteristics. These stories are coming along nicely and I hope to post up some examples here soon.
Recently, for my birthday, I received a new sewing machine which will certainly come in handy for the craft side of things, but besides that, I hope to experiment with the usage of stitching in my illustrations and to see how effectively it works. Stitching as part of illustration certainly isn’t anything new, but I will enjoy seeing how it works alongside my style.
Until next time, enjoy yourselves and stay creative!
This is a slightly more humorous project which I have worked on in recent times. It is in fact so cheesy that I decided against showing it all off for a while.
With my recent mission to send off submissions to publishers, I came up with a couple of poster campaigns which didn’t make the final cut alongside the images and cover letter.
Considering what can be found displayed in public places, the first things that came to mind were “Missing” posters and “Wanted” posters, as seen in western movies. So, with a bit of Photoshop magic and a cute choice of words, I came up with the following…
Copyright (c) 2012 – 2015 Rachel Denison
Copyright (c) 2012 – 2015 Rachel Denison
It was fun to play with graphic effects and typography, having left it behind with a Graphic Design HND course many years ago in order to concentrate on an Illustration degree, it was interesting to consider fun ways of using graphic effects to gain attention.
Having now introduced this imagery to the public, I hope you like it and that it is quirky enough to capture your attention and heart for all the right reasons.
Remember, if you see this cat and you like him, get in touch.
Besides showing off my latest Tiger based imagery, I have a couple of happy announcements to make…
Firstly, I am now an official member of the AOI, so I therefore feel that I have been able to take a big step into the “real” world of illustration and really get some sound advice regarding what I should do next.
Secondly, I was very pleased to secure my first ever permanent job last week! I have been working for the past four years after years of education, but as many people will know about the modern working world, it is not easy to get more than a temporary role at present. Thankfully all of this has now changed and I can look forward to making plans surrounding my future.
Onto my illustration antics, I recently rummaged through my collection of papers and sketchbooks, and found my black paper sketchbook hidden away amongst it all. You can probably guess what sprung to mind from the title of this entry… Tiger in space!
I instantly began to gather all relevant colour schemes and pulled together a few cute images as follows:
My room has deteriorated to the state it was during my time as an Illustration degree student, but I am keen to really get stuck into using the various papers and sketchbooks to the best that they can be!
Until next time, have fun and try not to eat too much chocolate!
Okay, I don’t strictly mean “Materialising” in its usual form, but I have recently got to thinking about the likes of the Radley dog and the From Me to You bears, and I have been picturing just where else Tiger can appear alongside paper. I have started gathering images of materials and, with the power of Photoshop, worked to recreate with some embossing and layering options, just how Tiger may look on…
Leather (purses etc)
As you can see, I have varied the ways in which Tiger would appear on leather. Tiger is recognisable as a print and as also when embossed. There is also the question of whether a face would be preferred or not.
Quite often, towels come with an image of perhaps flowers or dolphins in the corner. Here we have none other but our favourite cat, Tiger!
T-Shirts and labelling
Here we have Tiger on a T-Shirt along with a potential labelling idea alongside it. With Tiger being such a fashionable cat, the idea of wearing him is sure to be a winner.
I shall continue to explore potential ideas for Tiger’s future. As always, I am keen to hear from you. Do you have any requests regarding Tiger? Do you have any opportunities where you are, for Tiger? I am always open to comments and suggestions.