Tag Archives: watercolour

Love After Lockdown – Graphic Novel

I created this graphic novel page for ‘Make Art That Sells’ June Bootcamp Assignment.

As Lockdown restrictions are easing wedding planning can recommence for the couple’s big day. This opening image sets the context for the story.

I painted all of the elements in the story in Kuretaki watercolour paints and brought them together digitally for the A4 piece.

The MATS bootcamp brief gave photo portraits and a selection of items to spark a story. I’ve used these characters and woven the items together in a simple narrative with destination wedding and travel themes.

Here’s the final piece, intended as an A4 page. Zoom in to follow the narrative and see the detail of each of the artworks…

The rose farm poster is a small detail in the finished graphic novel but the A4 painting was one of my favourite pieces from the project, and the painted roses were then used throughout the final page.

These close up profile portraits were challenging but enjoyable to paint. I wanted to capture the joy of the wedding, and the relief and positivity after the uncertainty of lockdown.

MATS course leader Lilla Rogers gave an image of Issa Rae. I looked online for a joyful looking male to be her groom and chose an image which I later determined to be Jay Ellis. When I researched Jay Ellis I couldn’t believe it when I read that he co-stars with Issa Rae in a popular HBO TV programme ‘Insecure’. How bizarre a coincidence is that choosing them, when they are cast together romantically on TV!

This is my padlock inspired by the work of Alphonse Mucha, and also Hector Guimard’s Paris Metro designs. Playing with the idea of lockdown, and being locked together in love.

Catalina Island was prompted by a postcard in the initial brief. I enjoyed exploring the island virtually thanks to YouTube videos, and painted this scene for the location of the wedding.

I then developed the work into an animated video. Follow this link to see an animation of my graphic novel, which is over on my YouTube channel. Watch it here.

Thanks for being here. I’m developing my portfolio but presently have some availability for commercial and editorial illustration, and promotional work.

See my recent posts at these links.

Bye for now.

Kim

Letter G in the Ski A-Z

G is for Gloves – an essential piece of ski kit as cold hands cam spoil the day. I love it when fresh snowflakes fall on my gloves and remain there whilst their intricacy can be observed. I’ve noticed this most often when on a chairlift in snowy conditions.

I created these snowflakes using free motion embroidery and secondly with icing sugar.

Mittens are great alternatives to gloves for children, and for extremely cold conditions. Good quality ski mittens have separate fingers spaces inside, to add to their warmth.

Key ski items also starting with the letter G are Gondola, for non skiers, this is not the Venetian boat but one of the popular ski lift types, and also Goggles.

Goggles are as fundamental as gloves for well-being and comfort for cold temperatures and snowy days on the mountains.

This illustration is for Gondola, Goggles and Gloves. There’s also one other thing that starts with a G, to be spotted.

Watch this space for the letter H illustrations and if you’ve not seen them previously you can see the previous illustrations at these links….

Apres-Ski Illustration

F for Flying, Freedom and Flow

Technical Ski Illustrations

and more ski posts are on my blog.

Thanks so much for being here. Letter H will be coming up next…

Have a great weekend.

Kim

Ski A-Z – F for Flying, Freedom and Flow…

The latest instalment of my Ski A-Z for the letter ‘F’

There is flow and freedom in skiing which can feel like you’re flying. I love it when gliding along on skis on the mountain tops can feel like flying. Often birds can be seen flying in the valleys below.

I wanted to capture this feeling in this artwork. A sunny day is a must to conjure this magic feeling.

I feel this sensation of flight most in Les 3 Vallees above St Martin de Belleville and Meribel, when heading in the direction of Val Thorens.

The feeling of flying got me thinking about how Olympian Eddie ‘The Eagle’ Edwards must be the British person who has most experienced a feeling of flying on skis. Unusually Eddie, originally a downhill racer, first ski jumped as an adult. In a feat of courage and resolve he created a new British ski jumping record of 73.5 metres, the equivalent of jumping over 6 double decker buses.

I contacted Eddie (his given name is Michael), now inspiring people as a motivational speaker. I asked him about how skiing can feel like flying.

Eddie Edwards, said, “To fly……. is to be free!!”

I wanted to create an illustration which captured the freedom of flight mentioned in Eddie’s quote, along with the joy he demonstrated to the crowds after his Olympic ski jumps.

I don’t usually have a person in mind when painting faces for the Ski A-Z characters, I’m more trying to demonstrate joy and emotion in the expressions of the skiers.

A big thank you to Eddie for the quote, and the inspiration for the illustration.

Finally here’s a very short animation of the Fly, Freedom, Flow painting with a delicate ethereal stitched wing, to bridge between reality and imagination.

So, next up is the letter ‘G’ watch this space and follow to be sure to see the new work as it’s created.

Many people missed out on skiing this winter or had their seasons cut short. I hope that my artworks can give a positive vibe, to spark feel good memories.

If you’ve not seen the previous ski illustrations I’ve been working on you can see them at these links.

Technical Ski Illustrations

Ski A-Z ‘E’ for Extreme, Enjoy and Exhilaration

My favourite – Apres-Ski Illustration

Heli-Skiing in Russia – Illustrated Travel Memoir

Ski Illustrations

A-Z Ski Glossary

Here are my latest posts…

Thanks so much for being here. Please ‘Like’ if you do, and share with others who’ll also enjoy.

Many thanks

Kim

Ski A-Z ‘E’ for Extreme, Enjoy and Exhilaration…

I wasn’t sure as to whether there is relevance to continuing on with my ski A-Z project in the present global climate. But time is spent in lockdown should be time made better by finding the joy, and I get a lot of joy from making this work, and so I found that it felt best to continue. There’s a lot of people who enjoy skiing and mountain sports and so maybe share in the work can share some joy too.

If you’ve not seen my artworks for the letters from A to D then check out the links at the bottom of this blog post to catch up there.

Next up is the letter ‘E’ there are a lot of words that came to mind for E and I have incorporated this into a large artwork which illustrates some of my favourite ski feelings.

These are:

Enjoyment of the soaring peaks and stunning views of the mountain environment.

Exhilaration of skiing strong and fast, putting myself against the challenge of the mountain slopes. I always enjoyed giant slalom, over slalom courses, when we were ski racing.

Experiences – Skiing is a great switch off as it’s so engrossing physically and mentally that it’s hard to think of anything else meaning it’s a magic kind of mountain meditation.

One of the ways I love to experience and soak up the mountain atmosphere is to get off the piste and find somewhere to just sit, and be in an entirely natural environment, ideally with a semmel sandwich and a refreshing drink. To sit awhile and take it all in. For the non skiers, if you can get your skis into the snow you can use your ski poles between them to make a seat. Alternatively you can sit on the snow, ideally on a rucksack or plastic bag to avoid getting a soggy ski pants.

Extreme skiing needs you to have your wits about you and is so satisfying when you look back up a slope that you’ve achieved. Often having experienced a range of emotions on the way from doubt and fear to joy and euphoria.

My most extreme ski experience was Heli-skiing in the Caucasus mountains of Russia and Georgia. I illustrated an account of this trip which you can read and see at this link.

Here are the links to the Ski A-Z work already created…

Apres-Ski Illustration

A-Z of Ski Glossary

Technical Ski Illustrations

Watch this space for the ski paintings for the letter F…

Thanks so much for being here. If you’ve enjoyed this post please like it and if you know someone who’d enjoy it please share it with them. Let’s spread the joy of skiing.

Kim

Art and Illustrations To Inspire And Uplift

It’s been a tumultuous and busy past couple of weeks for most of the planet. I’m determined to keep sharing uplifting work, both new illustrations and ones from my back catalogue when I they are relevant.

The situation has moved fast and already has provided reflections on gratitude, for what may have previously have been undervalued, and the situation its is a reset of perspective of who is, and what is important.

Sending heaps of kindness and wellness to all those who are unwell or suffering.

I’ve been busy adapting our home for lockdown, had to make heart wrenching strategic business decisions, as well as finding tech solutions to replace face to face demonstrations. I’ve managed so squeeze some time in for illustration, which is therapeutic and can hopefully brighten someone’s day. This art from my heart follows…

I’ve been finding the terms used such as self-isolating and social distancing as having very negative connotations, and wondered whether putting a more positive slant on staying at home might make this feel more enjoyable and therefore sustainable. Here’s an example of this work, I’ll be developing these ideas and responding the World Health Organisation (@who) Creative Brief to communicate the key messages.

It’s snowing here. But it’s cosy, safe and warm here at home. Enjoy the home comforts. #stayhomesavelives

Home and family are everything. Despite the restrictions we must nurture our minds, bodies and relationships all from within our home. Thankfully technology can bridge between those we love but do not live with. Our families have come together for some great multi-generation live video calls which have been a great distraction and really made us laugh.

Here are a round up of the posts from my Instagram, to uplift and reassure.

This is for all those suffering with fear and anxiety. You are not alone. These feelings are understandable in this situation, so try to go easy on yourself. Comfort yourself with reassurance that you are safe and you are loved.

If there is someone that you feel would also like to see this please share. Spread the love. 💕 #stayhomestaysafe

There can be great joy in nature and this lovely season. Flashback to this watercolour painting from last year created as a book cover design.

The bright flowers are blooming to herald Spring, the birds are singing, daffodils shine bright. The sun radiates low into the rooms to warm away winter. Beautiful weather last week made the first days of lockdown easier as the garden is springing to life and the birds are full of energy and song.

Stunning spectrums that I spotted in our kitchen, cast by a refractive book cover being hit by the sun’s rays.

The March brief for #makeartthatsells was abstract wall art with a limited colour palette. This brief was a challenge when I’m so keen to communicate concepts through my art. I enjoyed the process once I got into it, and now seem to see tennis references in there. Maybe this was due to us building up to the new tennis season. I enjoyed layering of the paint, overlapping and becoming lost in the process.

Have Courage, Hold On. We are stronger than this thing. #alonetogether

I sprayed this positive quote from Audrey Hepburn in our garden, as a reminder, and for a little spray painting therapy.

Relaxing retreating in reading at the end of the day.

Watercolour and digital. You might recognise this scene from my chalet picture. Worked with a work in progress scan digitally to create this piece with a work in progress scan digitally to create this piece. #stayhomesavelives

Backlit beauty. The low setting sun lighting up this stunning tulip. When this tulip got snapped whilst moving pots I brought it indoors and popped it in water in a perfume bottle. First of my tulip bulbs to bloom, love it. If we can find joy in nature, whether it is growing or on TV there is a wealth of good to enjoy in the natural world.

Enjoy the Great Indoors. Whether you choose to scale your stairs for a work out, adventure to far flung places on Netflix or enjoy some Eastern philosophy on your yoga mat, wishing you a lovely day. #stayhomestaysafe

Created this house in watercolours on wet then developed this further to create the composition at the top of this post…

And finally: Only Tweet the good. Trying to only share positive and factual content. The birds are so active around our home, their beautiful song so clear in the stillness.

Thanks for being here. Stay safe, stay home and if there’s somebody who you feel would like to see my work please share the blog with them.

Here are my my most recent posts…

Thanks so much for being here. See my Facebook Page and Instagram for more frequent updates and work.

#staysafestayhome

Kim

#washyourhands

Breakfast Cereal Design Concept

Great days start with great mornings so I wanted to create a positive, inspiring breakfast cereal in response to the brief: Create a fun sized design concept and packaging for a new cereal product.

I wanted to inspire and uplift women through a positive, confident image of a female pilot. She already has three stripes so she’s doing well; metaphorically and literally she is flying high.

Here are my rough drawings whilst brainstorming ideas for the box creative…

Pilot eating breakfast, sketch
My favourite concept from all the ideas (below)

The character was further inspired by the aviation PR work I’ve been busy enjoying in recent weeks, thanks to my client in Florida.

Female pilot

I thought that aeroplane shaped breakfast cereal would be fun and novel. This idea was warmly received in consumer testing, with enthusiastic feedback.

I later added the fruit, and additional cereal aircraft, into the bowl for the final iteration.

Once I had the character idea I felt the breakfast cereal design concept formed around her.

In order to create the entire packaging concept it was necessary to define the target market, and what would appeal to them, to decide the ingredients, flavours, also to create a cereal brand, logo and product name.

I had all this in mind when choosing the colour palette of gold, red wine and cobalt blue. These were colours I could use throughout to represent the morning sun, and the colourful sunrise sky.

I chose ‘Inspired Mornings’ for the cereal company brand, and after painting a sun in watercolours I recreated the round window effect of my ‘Inspire by Kim’ logo and added the new brand name.

Nutrition and natural ingredients are key to wellbeing, which is fuel for a positive frame of mind, so I wanted the flavours and sweetness to be natural, therefore I chose fruit flavours on a Tropical theme, This flavour choice was to evoke the idea that the pilot is flying to a tropical island destination.

Travel, new experiences and the relaxation enjoyed on holiday/ vacation are fundamental to enjoyment of life, so by bringing flavours that are associated with holidays into the cereal concept the consumer would start the day enjoying a breakfast that the brain can associate with positive, pleasant experiences and help the person benefit from the associated holiday feelgood factor.

Watercolour painted pineapple, oranges and coconut
Watercolour painted pineapple, oranges and coconut

By illustrating the ingredients it was possible to give the consumer quick visual references and these were to denote the fresh, healthy, natural qualities of the product and brand values.

The reverse side of the cereal box was a great fun opportunity to further inspire the consumer and providing positive affirmations to start the day, in the form of a circular word search.

The wordsearch was placed over the watercolour sun using my favourite digital application of present, Procreate.

I created a template to fit the sizes in the brief, 4×3 inches, and arranged the completed panels within this.

The cereal box design before assembly
The cereal box design before assembly

This was the completed concept.

I was delighted that as I completed the design I saw the Virgin Atlantic campaign to inspire young women with a day of activity using the hasttag #seeherfly Wonderful that this timing coincided with my design.

Have a flying start to a great day. 🛫

Here’s my recent work along similar lines…

Bali Parasol – Instructional Illustration Work

Tennis Club Promotional Work Highlights

Bottle Brand Design

Brand Art – Steel Company

Get in touch for inspiring communications for your project.

Inktober Week 4 Drawings

My favourite #Inktober2019 work

I’m pleased to have made it through to the fourth and final week of #Inktober. Here are this week’s ink artworks… apologies that they aren’t in order.

A tricky prompt was day 25, tasty. I did a line drawing which has been a bit of a breakthrough piece for me as it has helped me realise that it is conceptual illustration that I really want to excel at.

I did an ink line drawing which I then developed into a painted piece. Painted on the beach whilst on holiday in Turkey, in my favourite watercolours.

“The Doctor will see you now”. Ink and cherry 🍒 juice.

I’m not really into Halloween anymore but the illustration prompts are all part of the challenge. So here is my macabre drawing for the Day 22 #Inktober prompt Ghost and #portfolioclub which gave me the haunted prompts ‘doctor’ and ‘conservatory’.

#inktober2019 #doctor #hauntedhouse #conservatory #drawingchallenge #surgeon #ghost

#Inktober day 23 prompt is ancient.

Happened upon this ancient species today, sadly it was dead. So have honoured it for today’s #inktober2019 drawing.

This fascinating ancient species was a pleasure to study.

#dragonfly #inktober

These next three pieces I drew inflight, whilst travelling back from my holiday. I find the seating and table position on aircraft ideal for drawing.

Inktober day 27 prompt is coat. This and recent observations made me think about how inhibitions, self-consciousness and fear can become a heavy, restrictive coat, holding a person back from fully enjoying life.

#inktober2019 #fear #inhibitions #selfconsciousness

#Inktober day 28 prompt is Ride. This made me think about going with the flow, accepting with positivity whenever possible what happens. It’s all about the journey.

#inktober2019 #ride #rollercoaster #illustrator #illustration #flow

#Inktober day 29 prompt is Injured. This of course took me back to my knee injury and this climb back from injury that I’ve illustrated is ‘inspired’ by the long rehab experience.

I started with a page from #breathemagazine that I thought represented the climb back from the lows of injury, the uphill struggle and having to keep picking oneself up, both mentally and physically. Drawn inflight.

#inktober2019 #injury #rehab #unhappytriad #aclreconstruction

#inktober day 24 prompt Dizzy was apt as I’ve been different from labyrinthitis for the past few weeks. I tried to represent how this feels. #illustration

#inktober2019 #dizzy #labyrinthitis

#Inktober day 26 prompt is dark. When one feels angry and grouchy for no apparent reason, and then when it passes you feel calm ms blissful.

This one is how it feels to have completed the daily drawing challenge!

#inktober #acceptance #beinghuman #inktober2019 #itstoughbeinghuman

#inktober day 30 prompt is catch. At this time of year this has to be about catching a cold when people don’t catch their coughs and sneezes.

#catchacold #inktober2019 #illustration #illustrator #ink

#Inktober day 31 – the final prompt of the month is Ripe. Without colour ripeness if a tricky thing to show so I thought about readiness, strength, mental preparedness in the form of belief, being at your best, in your prime and from somewhere came a superhero strawberry wearing power pants.

And with that I’ll call #inktober2019 officially done. And I’ll sigh, rest my eyes for a moment and then get on to the next project, powered up and ready for creative challenges.

#ready #yougotthis #youcan #ican #powerpants #illustration #strawberry #ink #draw #illustrator

Ps I find this piece kind of weird but haven’t got time to do anything else. 🤣

Also in a line drawn style I recently made this card for the newest bundle of joy to arrive in our family. Tiny sparkles were added to the paper card which was personalised with baby’s name and birth date.

#carddesign #greetingcard #babygirl #teddy #redbaloon #illustration #ipadart #procreatedrawing #cute #Illustration #Art #love #socks

Cheers for being here to see my work. Sharing helps me to continue developing my work. I figure it will only get better with practise and keeping creating. So support and feeling my work is reaching people really helps spur me on. I’m always interested to read comments and hear which pieces you like so feel free to comment. Supportive comments always most welcome.

Here are the previous weeks drawings. I’ll be selecting my favourite ones and then calling #Inktober2019 done!

Inktober 2019 – Week 1

Inktober – Week 2

Inktober Week 3

Here are the highlights from my first Inktober in 2017. I didn’t do the challenge in 2018.