My Creative Process with Eclipse Illustration
Hello and welcome back to Beginnings where we focus on fresh starts, new cycles, experimentation, exploration and creativity.
In my previous post which you can read here, I shared about why I’ve been absent for the past few months. I also share images from my last completed art journal spread and what it meant to me.
In this post, I’ll be sharing about the process of creating the illustration, Coming Full Circle: Eclipse.
When I broached the subject of creating an illustration, I knew exactly what I wanted to portray: Dividing the image in half darkness to represent how my heart felt eclipsed by the event of my father’s passing. Praying hands were in order since that is one of the essential pieces to processing such a loss. I also show this in how I designed the letters, partly in grey and black with dots of red for the heart centered emotion. I also drew a circle to represent coming full circle with life and death. A new cycle has begun.
There are several things I wanted to point out with the technical process of experimentation with this illustration:
First, I used a new mixed media pad by Master’s Touch, which description says can be used with wet and dry media. I experimented with this paper before and it went well. But I only used minimal water application to activate the colored pencil I was using.
With this illustration, I applied more water and more layers, and while doing so, the paper did not hold up well. As a result, I decided to acquire my go-to brand, Strathmore, for a mixed media pad for my next illustration. I have yet to activate water soluable tools with this paper, but I’ll let you know when I do.
Secondly, when I require water solubility with a larger area, a pencil tip is not the best way to go. It ends up looking uneven in coverage. Pastel was better but since the pencil was applied initially, it was difficult to eliminate the unevenness. I ended up using a charcoal pencil to fill in the areas that needed more coverage. Then I was reasonably satisfied.
Thirdly, I did enjoy the water solubility of the colored pencil and layering color for the hair giving it more texture. And it also gave the solid black of her garment more density.
In this illustration, I used Prismacolor Premiere soft core pencils. I love the smoothness of application and the density of color. I also used Caran’Dache Supracolor Aquarelle water soluable colored pencils and Neo Color ll water soluble pastels for the areas where I applied water.
Again, this was fully experimental and I’m always learning about what each supply can do and what paper works well with them. I have supplied an art demo video which you can view above where I share most of my process in creating this illustration, Coming Full Circle: Eclipse.
I also include the theme song to this blog, Beginnings, to inspire you in your own creativity.
Where are you giving yourself space to experiment, whether creatively or simply in life? Where do you experience the most resistance when considering the possibilities? You can ask yourself the question: What am I afraid of, to help unpack that resistance and see what you discover.
I want to sum up this post with a word about this day: June 8, 2023 marks the 5th month since my father passed from this world. So I find the timing of this post serendipitous to honoring his life and his death with creativity and appreciation. My father was always giving me encouragement concerning my art; he was always ready with a critique when I asked for it growing up in his house. He was very proud of my skill and told me so, often. I wanted to share that with you, my friend and reader.
Thank you for being a part of my creative and life journey.
May you have blessed Beginnings!
Dawn Herrings is an Artist, Illustrator, Aspiring Musician, and Avid Journal Keeper. She enjoys spending time writing songs, composing for the piano, playing with all kinds of art media, including colored pencils for illustrating, exploring design and textures, having fun creating spreads in her art journal and writing about her day, her dreams and her vision in her journals. Dawn is also Office Manager and partner in business with her husband, Bill, of 33 years.