Month: February 2014

URBAN ANGEL: deconstructed, part one

As I started working as an illustrator, more than 30 years ago, I always wanted to see the step by step progression of any artwork: now that I have a chance to share it: here it goes.

I usually start like most illustrator, with sketches: mine are mostly doodles. Very rarely do I go ballistic at my sketch stage: I know where I want to go and if I tie myself down with too much information, the execution will be too constraining therefore I’d rather have fun improvising in the painting process. And of course for clients: it needs  to have more details: like the sketch on the right (below).


Usually my drawing is also minimum, just a few lines to determine shapes.

For this illustration, I did something that I rarely do: I used tones to save some time instead of painting with values only. The reason was simple: wanting to add patterns on the pants and tank top would have been too long to do for the deadline I had. Painting with tones only, limits the range of colours but still it’s getting me the elements I want. After the tones are done, the layer is on multiply mode and I can paint my pattern underneath.


With the information provided in tones, comes the colour test.


When I created this concept: I knew what message I wanted to convey but I was not certain about keeping it clean, realistic and busy or loose, simple and funky. I opted to make it clean and busy: just to get it out of my system.

I wanted to have the “wings” melt into the graffiti to have the viewer drawn into the image by the details to  eventually discover the white wings. The challenge was to work on a static scene and have the the components of the painting create some dynamic.


I work mostly with Corel Painter and Adobe Photoshop.

In the upcoming posts, I will deconstruct that image, step by step.