By Ruth Thorp Studio, Feb 18 2013 10:04PM
Lately I have been enjoying producing illustration work and placement prints instead of focusing only on making pattern repeats. After doing some illustration work for my Dad to go alongside some of his written work, it really gave me a boost to start exploring my signature style more and reach into areas I didn't feel as comfortable in. More on this in a later post!
I have also been reading the fantastic new book by Lilla Rogers and was particulalry interested when I came to the section about the 'Children's Picture Book Market'. This is an area I have always thought would be fun and exciting to be involved in, but I have always been wary of it, as Lilla states 'picture books are character-driven'. Well, I have always been very concious of the fact that drawing people and figures has been one of my weaknesses and so have shied away from it in the past. After reading the section in Lilla's book, however, I thought it would be a good challenge to set myself to see whether I could create some characters.
You can see my results above and if I can say so myself, I'm pretty chuffed with them as a first attempt. Things will only get better the more I practice and I feel comfortable with the fact that I am creating something that is very me! I have made a couple of compositions with the characters in 'Raindrops and Sunshine' and am planning to use the little characters below to develop some scenes or patterns. I'm pretty certain, I'll never be able to draw a perfectly proportioned, life-like figure drawing, but I'm ok with my little fun charcters with stickly legs and balls for hands and I can see my style getting stronger each day. This is a something I must remind myself of when things aren't going quite as well. In fact on the morning I produced these, I was having a very floopy day and was not feeling particularly inspired or good about my work. Turns out all it took was a couple of little hand-drawn doodles scanned in and coloured up to switch it all around!
So I have faced my artistic 'achilles' heel' and have survived! I wonder what else I can try. I've certainly inspired myself to try new things that I previously thought I wouldn't be able to do. How about you? Is there anything you have always shied away from or avoided? I'd love to hear your thoughts and why don't you give it a go too and see how you can flip your creative doubts around and make it work for you in your own style.