View Full Version : Illustration

Candra H
April 10th, 2011, 12:38 PM
Cover art for a collection of short horror stories available as a Kindle download from Amazon. Used gouache on A3 Bristol Board and spent roughly six hours on it from sketch to completed painting.

When I traced the lighthouse onto the background I forgot I'd moved the horizon line so the perspective is a bit off, but it works well enough as is, the author is pleased and I had fun painting it, so it's all good.


If anyone's interested in the stories, you can buy a copy here - The Keeper's Curse and Other Stories (http://www.amazon.co.uk/Keepers-Curse-other-stories-Anthologies/dp/B004VNVESE/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&m=A3TVV12T0I6NSM&qid=1302435406&sr=1-1)

April 10th, 2011, 01:10 PM
Your use of gouache is quite 'painterly.' A lot of artists tend to go very flat using that. The feeling of movement is carried out very well in the brushstrokes. I don't mind the slight kilter to the lighthouse due to the perspective, it adds to the sense of urgency you've built in the painting. Nice job.

April 10th, 2011, 01:18 PM
Van's right about gouache, I always had trouble with the stuff. Great job and congrats on having the work!

April 10th, 2011, 03:04 PM
Congratulations Candrah! You've done a wonderful job with the cover, as usual.

Candra H
April 10th, 2011, 06:18 PM
Thanks all, and yeah, I'm used to working with acrylics (see my avatar pic) but they scan badly - usually a lot of reflection which messes with the colour and tonal values, light and shade and whatnot, so I started using gouache which has a matt finish. What I like about it is, you can use gouache like acrylics, without diluting with water, and get similar results. It took a while to get the hang of it because the blending process is different, and I'm still in the learning process, but I think I'm getting better with each picture.

May 4th, 2011, 02:46 AM
Nice work, Candra! Your illustration is well done and the details are spot on. It is appropriate as a horror book cover. Thanks for sharing!

Candra H
May 6th, 2011, 06:37 PM
Thanks, John! I'm glad the details work and that you like it.

May 17th, 2011, 12:47 PM
Great work, its very realistic. Fits the horror genre! And oh.my.god. I think I know that author! I had no idea he wrote a book xD

Candra H
May 17th, 2011, 05:05 PM
Thanks! I'm chuffed it's believable as a horror illustration, and yeah, the author's written a good few short stories. This is the cover art for a collection of them, though not a single book in the way you think. He's a fantastic writer and I was well chuffed to get the opportunity of working with him. Definitely a name to watch out for, and I know he has other big projects underway so watch this space...

May 30th, 2011, 08:35 AM
That's a beautiful painting. I always wanted to take a painting class, but I haven't really taken the time to do so, yet. I've looked at some of your other works on your other topics, Candra, and I have to say you are a pretty talented artist. I'm an "artist", but not exactly one of those technical artists... I kind of just do my own thing.

Candra H
May 30th, 2011, 12:21 PM
Thanks kinetika. If I'm honest I'm not really very technical either. Mostly self taught and generally trying to figure it all out as I go. I've been at it since I was very small though so lots of years for practice. Sometimes I wonder if I might have been better off studying at art shool or something, maybe I'd have learned all the techniques then and saved myself the heart ache of not being able to translate the pictures I see in my head the way I'd like to.

If you do decide to take up that painting class, good luck with it. Any technical experience can only ever be a good thing. At the very least it'll give you a solid foundation from which to experiment.

May 30th, 2011, 08:14 PM
I was a Fine Arts major in college, but I haven't finished the degree because my interests started to change. I took about a year's worth of courses, just not painting, mostly drawing courses and a few design courses. The ones I enjoyed the most were figure drawing, which is where you learn how to draw people. I never was one to draw nature, though, I could do it. People interest me more, and I feel that I'd make a better character designer than anything else... but you know, artists are suppose to be versatile.

I know this isn't my topic, but I want to show you the last thing I drew (more of a sketch, than anything else). It's of my story character, and it was drawn in 9-9-09... a fitting date for someone who has an obsession with the number 9.

Like you, I just learned on my own... but I feel it's best to go that route, then go on to school for it. I have a friend who has never taken an art course before, and he may end up becoming a professional artist, so you can still make it without the degree.

Candra H
May 31st, 2011, 08:17 PM
Thats a lovely drawing. I like the detail on the bodice and the expression in her eyes. And I hear you about being versatile. I'm more of a nature artist and into fantasy monsters and castles etc, than people. So I'm now trying to learn how to draw humans with no access to real life models or any real experience other than what I can plunder from books. Hopefully I figure it out soon because people are a pretty big feature in book illustrations, haha.

Yep, I'm also hoping to carve out some kind of small living with my art. Not necessarily professional grade, just enough to have people come to me for my work and maybe make some money at it. I'm not greedy. So I also agree about not needing a paper degree to make it.

June 1st, 2011, 04:13 PM
My friend makes extra by designing shirts, tattooing, making posters, cover art, etc.. He's already offered me his services for whenever I need cover art for my story, too. It's awesome to see his work on shirts, though, because I can say I know the guy who drew the design lol. His brother has a band, and they've had a few songs played on the radio, so he does all their art stuff and that's how he gets out there.

Me, I wouldn't say I was "greedy", but I want the fame that I could get with my story and ideas; the money just comes with it. I also want to bring back the storytelling of old. I hardly care for the media that comes out these days, so I tend to go to indie and abstract sources... because they're more interesting.

That character I showed you, though, I just want to one day have the most perfect drawing of her and that's the closest I've ever gotten.

Candra H
June 1st, 2011, 07:31 PM
Sounds pretty cool, what your friend's doing. And a good way of getting his work and name out there to a wider audience. All the best to him, and to you too. I hear you re your character drawing. I've been working on a dragon design for years and still hope to get a perfect translation of my ideas... one day.