Sunday, December 25, 2016

Christmas Myrnas

Continuing with Illo Advent, I did some Christmas themed illustrations of my dog Myrna. I'd already done some extras when I did 'Scarlet' for Colour Collective and I had saved them for Illo Advent days when I was too busy to create something new:



And then I added two more, with a different background colour, as it was getting closer to Christmas:



Some of these are inspired by actual things Myrna has done, and some of them are just inspired by her in general. She does hoik her ball out from tricky places using a paw, but she hasn't stolen a bauble (yet....). But I regret to say that we had a BBQ last night and we did find her up on the table, after the crumbs and the discarded serviettes (she loves tissues). It's not like she doesn't know that she's not allowed up there! Fortunately all the food had been taken away by that time (also all the plates, but that doesn't read so well as 'up on the table'...). 

All done in Adobe Photoshop CC 2016 on a Wacom Cintiq Companion 2. They were pretty quick, I think I spent a little over two hours each on the first two, and less on the second two. 

Saturday, December 24, 2016

The 12 Days of Christmas for Illo Advent

I thought I'd try to take part in Illo Advent again this year, but as December can get pretty hectic, I decided I'd do a mix of new pieces and existing ones. I started off with 12 quick sketch illustrations for The Twelve Days of Christmas. In general, I managed to keep these down to about half an hour each, so the quality starts to drop off the more people I have to fit in. In an ideal world I would have had more time to work on the more extensive ones, but as it was I think it was good practice at keeping things speedy:

On the first Day of Christmas my true love sent to me
A partridge in a pear tree.

On the second Day of Christmas my true love sent to me
Two turtledoves
And a partridge in a pear tree.


On the third Day of Christmas my true love sent to me
Three french hens
Two turtledoves
And a partridge in a pear tree.


On the fourth Day of Christmas my true love sent to me
Four colly birds
Three french hens
Two turtledoves
And a partridge in a pear tree.


On the fifth Day of Christmas my true love sent to me
Five gold rings
Four colly birds
Three french hens
Two turtledoves
And a partridge in a pear tree.


On the sixth Day of Christmas my true love sent to me
Six geese a-laying
Five gold rings
Four colly birds
Three french hens
Two turtledoves
And a partridge in a pear tree.

See the rest under the cut:

Friday, December 23, 2016

Thank You!

For the Dark Phthalo Green prompt for Colour Collective, I decided to do a design to match our Christmas cards. I used the same background (changing the colour to green), and the same type of angel character, and added a robin helping with a floral wreath (to get in more green). As these match our Christmas cards, I might possibly use it for a thank you card, if I'm not feeling up to creating something new this Christmas (or, perhaps I should say, if I find I have way too much to do to take more than just Christmas Day off!). It needs a bit of a tidy up, of course. My Colour Collectives almost always do!



I'd also like to take this opportunity to thank you for reading my blog! This is my 446th post since I started blogging in April 2010. I've come a long way since then. Thank you for being a part of that journey!

Adobe Photoshop CC 2016 on a Wacom Cintiq Companion 2. About 5 hours.

Thursday, December 22, 2016

Winter Magic

Here's my piece for the final Colour Collective of 2016 - the prompt was 'white', and I didn't quite have enough time to do justice to what I wanted to draw. (December is so busy!) But that's okay, a lot of my Colour Collective pieces are like extended drafts - I can try out ideas, and further down the track I might work them up into something better. Once I've got the idea down, I won't forget it, and if I've done it for CC I can come back later and see all the things I want to change!

 

Here's a quick progress animation. I really only worked on this over one evening, so I only took screenshots of four stages - initial sketch, sketch, flat colour and final:


Adobe Photoshop CC 2016 on a Wacom Cintiq Companion 2. About 5 hours. 

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Christmas Cards 2016

Here are the Christmas cards I designed for us to send out this year. I always try to do something really fancy for our Christmas cards, and right now I think these are my favourites of all the cards I've done!




All the glittery baubles are made with a glitter texture from (I think, I did these a few months ago) CGTextures.com, but as my mother insists on sparkly cards, the halos were gilded with Cosmic Shimmer Gilding Flakes after they were printed:


Here's a video I posted on Instagram when I did my print test prior to sending the cards off to print, so you can see how shiny they are:

A video posted by Alison Mutton (@alene.art) on


We found the gilding flakes at a craft fair, and decided that we had to have them for the Christmas cards, so I designed our cards specifically around the flakes. We used two colours of flakes:

Mulled Wine:


And Autumn Leaves:


Read on for a video of the gilding application, and progress gifs, thumbnails and more:

Monday, December 19, 2016

Penguin Christmas Cards

Here are some Custom Christmas cards I created for some friends this year. Late last year they went on a photography trip to Antarctica - we had already ordered the cards before they left, so there was no Antarctica theme (I did a Carnaby Cockatoo instead), but this year they are spreading the penguin love. 


I used a faux woodcut style, to match the cards I did last year. I was given this photograph to use:



Originally the idea was to enlarge the boat behind them, and have it driven (do you drive a boat?) by Father Christmas, but when it came to actually getting the cards done I had a crashing migraine (and I do mean a real one, not just a headache, I'd spent the day throwing up, after the tooth infection and root canal I had also had that week - my time to work on the cards before print deadline rapidly slipped away from me) and I asked if I could do something a bit simpler. So I gave the two penguins a bauble to play with, and reused the background text from last year's card. I'm really rather pleased that we did, the two cards match each other beautifully, I think! 


I did two colour-ways as we got them printed at Moo and wanted to take advantage of the printfinity option:


Adobe Photoshop CC 2016 on a Wacom Cintiq Companion 2. About 4 hours.

Sunday, December 18, 2016

Lapphund Christmas Cards 2016

A new Christmas card to add to the lineup for some lovely friends. I've been doing their cards since 2013 and they have evolved from one finnish lapphund, to two finnish lapphunds, to the addition of a baby. Said baby is now a cheeky toddler, and I thought it was about time he got up to some Christmas Card mischief!


The original sketch for this was a little different - I initially had the two dogs joining in with painting the wall, but it was decided that as they are generally more placid and long-suffering than they are naughty it would be better to reflect that. Here are the two sketches side by side. I switched orientation as I felt it worked better. 


Here's a progress animation:


Of course, I used reference photos (these cards are, after all, a slightly more arty equivalent of family-photo cards - they have to look accurate!), and I also used some free finger-paint brushes for the Christmas tree. I'm pretty sure they were these ones.  The nappy cover is inspired by the many wonderful ones he's regularly dressed in. I couldn't leave it plain when he always has such stylish ones!

I did two colour-ways, as usual, as we get them printed at Moo, and it's nice to take advantage of the printfinity option. Back when it was only dogs I used to do two different designs, but lately it's just been different colours. 


Here's the whole line-up of cards. I always keep to roughly the same look. I've linked to the corresponding blog posts if you want to read more about any of these:







Adobe Photoshop CC 2016 on a Wacom Cintiq Companion 2. About 6–8 hours, I think. 


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