some thumbnails of my illustrations

some thumbnails of my illustrations
Please click on the links below to view my portfolio ........ Images copyright of Carrie Osborne

Saturday, 29 October 2011

Meet Stompin Dave....

Last night we went to see this very clever chap, 'Stompin Dave Allen' at a tiny pub in Pilton. He was fantastic fun to watch and we were quite flabbergasted at how he could sing, play fiddle, guitar or banjo and flatfoot all at the same time! I was very impressed!
He even did a stint of banjo playing behind the head whilst flatfooting, and throwing and catching his fiddle and bow mid reel without missing a step... excellent stuff!!

Sunday, 16 October 2011

More Life Drawing at Bath Artists Studios...

5 minute pose

Firstly, thankyou to all who left such encouraging comments on my Dragon spread, its really great to get feedback and I really appreciate your words and thoughts! I haven't put the silver leaf on that one yet but I have started the 2nd spread... I'm only doing three, just enough to give an impression of what the finished book would be like because I know editors are likely to want things changed!

So anyway, yesterday I went to another six hour life drawing workshop, this time at Bath Artist Studios which I hadn't been to before. It was great, a big life room but with a friendly, relaxed kind of atmosphere, lots of private artists studios as well and a big common room with comfy sofas and a kettle!
I haven't done any proper drawing since Salisbury back in August so I was quite rusty as usual and it took a while to get back up to speed!
We started with some 5 minute warm ups (though I prefer to start with even quicker gestures of one or two minutes usually) here's some of them...

This is my usual approach of line, gesture and frantic measuring, which means I don't get a great deal down in the 5 minutes especially before I've found my stride!
The tutor suggested an approach I hadn't tried before which was to use a broad flat edge of charcoal to 'block in' the mass or shape of the whole form very quickly and loosely and then work in with line afterwards...
Heres a couple of 2 minute examples, quite interesting...

So I thought I'd try starting with this approach on a longer pose and see how it went... it certainly got me a lot further on a lot quicker and simplified the measuring to some extent. And it did leave me more time for rendering and enjoying the shadows... this pose below was 40 minutes...

The last part if the afternoon was one long pose, so I started with some very quick rough prelims to find all the lines through the form...

Then worked in charcoal trying to remember all of the various techniques I have learned over the last few years, but still had a great deal of trouble with the bent knee!

This one (above) was about an hour and a half, (I think her head and right arm are a little out of proportion though!) Finally I decided to have a bit of a play with dip pen and ink, with some white gouche highlights for the last 10 minutes - its great fun, but I find you have to be bold, and just go for it! All in all a very enjoyable day!

Wednesday, 12 October 2011

WIP - A Flight of Dragons... to leaf or not to leaf?

All images copyright of Carrie Osborne 2011

Finally the Dragon spread - first of the three full colour spreads I need to go with my dummy book roughs, is finished (nearly!)
This has been a long project with trying to steal time here and there to work on it when I can. Its a double page spread so the 'gutter' or fold of the book runs down the middle of the illustration, and the text will go in the paler areas on the right hand side of the page.

I had intended to embellish quite a few of the spreads with small amounts of silver leaf through the book, a flash of moonlight on silver scales here, fish glittering in water there....
So the painting phase of this one I think I'm done with, which leaves the question - to leaf or not to leaf???
It would have to be subtle in case a potential publisher didn't want to go down the foil route, (because I do want to try and get this published if I'm very, very lucky and if I get over my fear of travelling to London!) but of course scanners and printers don't reproduce reflective qualities all that well.
I think I'm going to get it scanned before doing any silver leaf just in case...
Some details for you:

Also I thought you might like to see some work in progress shots...

After stretching paper and drawing out, I always start with the most chancy and most terrifying bit - the big wet-on wet wash... this can either make or destroy a painting before its begun! But thats exactly what I love about painting this way with watercolours, there's an unpredictable element where the paint moves to its own purpose, merges, spreads, and it can be really beautiful and unexpected.

Of course I know which colours I want where and which I want to merge so there is a fair amount of deliberation before placing each heavy stroke of colour, then just keeping my nerve enough not to interfere with it too much as it starts to move!
To add another level of unpredictability I've really got into using salt, both fine grain and rock salt on my washes, and I love the effect you get, though its quite easy to get carried away and do too much!

Here's a few drawing board shots as it progresses...

After each night's painting I usually scribble notes to myself around the edges to remind me what needs doing next while its fresh in my mind, sometimes its several days before I can get back to it. I'm still undecided about that moon....!

I hope you don't mind the self-indulgence of this rather long post... getting the first spread done is a real milestone on this project and means I'm very nearly at the end of it, (which I never thought I would be at times!)
The next stage will be the most daunting - trying to get appointments to show it to publishers, laying it bare and bracing for the inevitable critisms and rejections which I am more than prepared for... but you never know until you try do you!

Monday, 3 October 2011

WIP - Lucy Rose... the paints come out at last!

Lucy Rose WIP

I managed to snatch a few hours here and there at my drawing board this week, not on my dragon spread which is still patiently waiting for some paint to give the creature life and substance and moon-frosted dragon breath... but on a little commission that's been tucked away in the back of my mind as the deadline creeps up on me!
She's nearly finished, just a few more tweaks, a couple more hours maybe but that needs to wait for another night when my eyes have rested enough to see what needs to be done next!
Here are a few work in progress shots along the way...

The little girl's Granny has commissioned this for her birthday, I do hope she'll like it... its always a little differant painting a child I haven't met compared to painting a child I know well... we'll soon see if I got her right! I hope she likes Unicorns!
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