Tuesday, 10 August 2010

The Fearsome Beastie, part the second... finally




How can it be nearly a month since I last posted...?! Time to make amends right now! I was beavering away on this beastie character some weeks back now (previously, on matt's blog...) so I could put together a sample double page spread for the author of the story to pitch to some publishers. With my first attempts at the F.B.'s design I got a little caught up in my shorts. I've also got ideas for another 'monster' project on my drawing board (that's for another day... I hope...) and I was having trouble distinguishing the two characters in my own head. My first beastie designs were also not giving me the facial features I needed for the acting I wanted in the spread. Well, long story short (too late) I pretty much had all the nuts and bolts I needed in my preliminary beastie sketches (the doodle with the lampost had all I wanted for the beastie) so, with a monday deadline breathing down my neck (always focuses the mind) I cracked on this weekend to try and finish the spread. Ok, so I didn't quite make it but, in my defense, I did get the author a 97% finished spread to show then worked on the last 7% yesterday evening.

I really wanted to try and improve my drawing of children on this one. It's something I still find a challenge, to try and get distinct personalities instead of bland generic child 1, child 2... I'm still not sure about the blue skin children shown IN the night time shadows... I might have more of a children OF the night?! I did like the fact that giving them a nocturnal palette shifted attention to the two face beastie in the scene while picking out beastie colours for a limited palette in the children helped to balance the whole spread. Maybe I do need to give the beastie's evil side of the face the same blue treatment... but does that suggest some link with the children which I don't want to convay...?! Decisions decisions... On looking at things this morning the pool of lamp illumination on the floor does need adjusting as it seems to occupy a different plane to that of the dry brush cast shadows... so 99.9% done, 0.1% for tonight maybe. I could fiddle with the image forever (a bad habit of mine) but until there's any interest in the book what I have so far will have to do.

On a colour related note, if anyone reads this perhaps they'd be good enough to pipe up with a comment if they find the images way too dark on their screen...? They look fine on my iMac LCD monitor, print fine but look too 'X-Files' shadowy on another cathode ray monitor I sometimes use, despite my checking all the settings on hardware and software. I'm inclined to believe my iMac screen until told otherwise... Or maybe it's my tired eyes...

By the way all copyright on the text goes to the excellent Giles Paley-Philips

story text © Giles Paley Philips 2010

11 comments:

Philip Morgan said...

Lovely stuff Matt! Some of your best character work yet I feel.

To get around the blue children thing, and if it wasn't too much trouble, you could angle the street lamp the other way. So that the cone of light fell over the children and FBs left side. You'd have to be careful that the pool of light on the ground didn't look like a pool of pee though.

As for the too dark question. I'm on T's laptop and it looks fine.

Dzhony_df said...

очень хорошие иллюстрации!!! Very good illustrations!!!

cassia said...

it IS slightly too dark on my monitor. Beastie's nether regions and legs are disappearing! Am pretty sure any printer could be attuned to your own monitor though?

Fantastic work. I love it- really strong stuff. Brilliant drama and movement. Don't think you have the 'generic child' problem at all. Each are distinct in look and in personality. The blue faces don't bother me, but you could add some light to them where the lamp light would hit, highlighting their real colours if you wanted.

Abz said...

Looks great on my iMac as well-- I dont mind their skin tones- the whole thing works together-- great textures as always man! Keep it up

Chris Kennett said...

Matt you have a horrible habit of creating art that makes me scream "I WISH I'D DONE THAT". This post is no exception.

michael robertson said...

I'm with Chris on this one...when I see your art, I am always just so blown away. You are a master at character design, color, layout...everything!

On these pieces, I particularly love the color-blue kids included. I'm a big fan of limited and muted color-I think it often stands out among all that overly saturated, primary colored children's illustration that abounds. As far as t piece being too dark, it looks great on my iMac-all the little details showup fine, right down to the beastie's belly button!

Can't wait for your next post, Matt-they're always such an inspiration.

damon said...

super cool

Anonymous said...

Hey Matt, there isn't anything I can add that hasn't already been said but I wanted you to know that I think that this idea's great and your beastie is wonderful (particularly like the two faces ambiguity, I think children will relate). Love your style, I'm very excited to see the full story-spread! Rob H

Eric Barclay said...

Really wonderful characters and compositions. The colors look great on my displays and are really quite striking. This is just beautiful.

Jon Davis said...

I does look dark on my monitor, but saying that it looks ok like that.
You can see what's going on ok.

But I think the kids are really good. Good distinct characters, and I think the blue colouring is fine. Especially if they will be normally coloured elsewhere, then it will be obvious it is night-time colouring.
I really like the two-faced beastie, and the way he's sort of peeping round his shoulder.
Top stuff

viagra online said...

What an awesome design! why you don't write a children book?