HOW IT'S DONE

After many years producing these posters in the traditional way using gouache paint and brush I have now embraced the new medium of digital. This hasn't necessarily speeded up the process as I produce these in virtually the same way as I always did, but rather than paint and board I now use a digital canvas.  Whilst still loving the looseness of a painted image I find that digital has the benefit of giving a crisp line and a vibrant flat colour. These are not 'computer generated images' as many believe, a computer will not break down an image into such simple blocks of colour. These are not manipulated in Photoshop, in fact the only time Photoshop is used is to clean up the scan of the pencil line work.

The only way to achieve these images is by drawing them as you will see in the following images. Because they are produced as 'Vector' illustrations rather than being resolution based it means they can be reproduced in any size without a loss of quality.

 

01 progress sketch

The illustrations begin in the traditional way with a pad and pencil.

Firstly I produce a loose pencil sketch to establish the composition. 

 

02 progress

This is then refined. The line work is carefully planned and the breakdown of the colours considered.

 

03 progress ii

Once I'm happy with the linework it is then scanned into the computer, over- traced and 'plotted' by hand with a digital pen, creating 'Vector' linework 

ready for the colour. 
This can take several hours depending on the complexity of the illustration.  Once complete I place the main elements onto their

own layers, enabling me to work on individual sections of the illustration in isolation by turning layers on and off.

 

04 progress iii

Now the fun bit, adding the colour. Working on one individual element at a time and converting the line work into solid areas of colour. 

 

05progress iv

06 progress v

07 progress vi

08 progress vii

09 progress viii

10 progress ix

11 progress x

 This is where the advantage of digital really comes in. A lot of care is taken at this stage to get the balance of colour just right.  This process can

involve a lot of experimentation and can take several hours or even days, sometimes I even do a couple of versions.

 

12 progress xi

Once happy the image is cropped to the size required.

 

13progress xii

The copy is then added and I prepare the artwork for all the formats it is to be reproduced in.

I hope this gives a quick insight into my working methods.