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Work in Progress

Thumbnails, Value Study, Color Comp, Model and Lighting

When I first turned my career towards story illustration, I had no idea the amount of prep work that goes into making a stunning piece. Before an illustrator puts brush to canvas, they've already done a ton of homework.

The tricky bit is that the image has to look believable. Whether it’s Alice in Wonderland, Gulliver’s Travels, Catcher in the Rye or Little Woman.


This is like drafts of your term papers.

Rough sketches, ideas that will eventually be worked up into a line drawing and value study.


Color comp is always a hard step for me, as there are infinite ways color schemes on can pick. Sometimes I do have artist direction from the client, or an idea in my head, but even in this example, the shadows can be blue black to purplish gold.