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Hair Gone Wild!

Blender does not always play nice. For some strange reason it decided my little character was having a bad hair day 🙂

Hair Gone wild

Not Tuesday 🙂

 

Lighting & colour

Lighting is something that I’ve been paying more attention to when illustrating my latest picture book. And lately, I’ve also been reading about colour schemes and colour theory.

I’m reworking some of my illustrations from my book to employ what I’ve learnt in the last few weeks. The idea is to go back and recolour and re do the lightning to improve the illustrations.

Below are two pics that I’ve been working on this month (click to view whole image).

Getting somewhere (slowly).

It’s been almost three years since I started working on my book “Pete and the Enchanted Book”. And it was only today that it hit me – I’m actually getting somewhere. Writing and illustrating a picture book is such a humongous project that getting to the end is not something I care to think about because the end always feels so far away.

But today I realised that I’ve reached an important milestone. The drafts for most illustrations are done. I still have loads of work left – but we’re talking months not years now. Not even a year! Now that put a smile on my face.

Anyway, here’s the latest illustration that I completed this evening.

Pete and the enchanted book

Pete and the enchanted book

 

A witch’s enchanted book

all-books-are-magical

Work in progress! After a three months break I am slowly getting back to working on my picture book; “Pete and the enchanted book.” So… watch this space 🙂

My inspiration has returned !

I’m pleased to say that I’ve finished my little side project and the break has worked wonders. My inspiration has returned and I can’t wait to apply all the new things that I’ve learnt about blender to my new illustrations.

I now understand a lot more about Blender Cycles which I will be using in the future. I’ve also learnt some very handy techniques in texturing which I hope will improve my work greatly. It certainly pays off to take a few weeks out to recharge the old ‘inspirational’ batteries.

Here’s my (almost) finished illustration.

Rosario, Uruguay

Rosario, Uruguay

And here’s a little video, showing the modelling stages of the 3d model.

A change is as good as a rest

Producing my Amelia picture book and going straight into writing and illustrating another book, has totally worn me out. My enthusiasm and energy for a new story has flatlined. So, I’ve decided to take a few months off and do something completely different whilst I wait for the return of inspiration.

 

If you have been following this blog, then you will know that I do all my illustrations in Blender3D. One thing that I’ve found very difficult, is to find the time to learn more about the software. There never seem to be enough time as writing and illustrating seems to pretty much fill up all my spare time! So, I thought, now is the opportune moment to learn more about the areas in Blender that either I struggle with, could improve or know very little about.

 

So I enrolled on an online course called “Creating 3d environments” in Blender. It is already giving me new ideas that I want to incorporate in my latest picture book. Although the course takes you through a tutorial and teaches you how to build up the scenes shown in the trailer, I’ve decided to work on my own project and build my own 3D environment.

My project is to try and recreate the majestic and beautiful old house that you see in the picture below.

Rosario, Uruguay

Me and my brother outside our late grandmother’s house.

I have very fond memories of this house, as it was the house of my late grandmother. The picture was taken in 2012 in Rosario, Uruguay, about a year before it was sold to a property developer.

The building is still there today; now abandoned and badly dilapidated, looking almost haunted and ready to crumble into a pile of dust.  I guess it’s only a matter of time before it’s demolished.

I will post the end result of my 3d illustration here once it’s finished.

Rosario uruguay 2

Some of the house’s artefacts that my brother managed to salvage, now invaluable references when recreating the house in 3D.

Pete & the Enchanted Book – my new picture book

I’ve now started work on my 4th picture book. I’m looking forward to writing and illustrating a children’s book again after a two-year break from the genre.

The book is about a little boy called Pete and his encounter with a witch called Willisa.

Below are two characters from my book with their corresponding rigs. A rig is like a digital skeleton bound to the character. Like a skeleton, the rig is made up of joints and bones that are used to act as a handle for bending the character into different positions. As I have no intention of animating my characters – my knowledge of building complex rigs is limited – the rigs I use tend to be very simple. But, as I hope you’ll appreciate, that simplicity will do the job just fine!

boy and rigtest pose movement

Victorian Portraits – meet the characters part II

Amelia Dyer through the ages; infant girl, teenager and young woman.

Amelia Dyer infant girl

Amelia Dyer teenager

Amelia Dyer young woman

Amelia Dyer’s mother

Amelia Dyer's mother

Amelia Dyer’s brothers

Amelia Dyer's brothers

 

 

“My life will be ruined if people knew of my illicit affair.”

Quote from my book, not a confession! So leaving controversial headings aside, I am writing to share my good news!

Even though I still have a significant amount of work left to do on my Amelia book, I can, for the first time in over a year, feel the completion of my project. After months of hard work I can feel it’s slowly coming to an end. I have created the characters, the scenes and I have framed the illustrations in the way I want to demonstrate the action. It’s one thing having an idea in your head and another putting it on paper. And a nightmare when you just don’t have a clue on how to illustrate the text, so having made it this far feels like success.

I am now starting the process of finalising my illustrations which entails some texturing and lighting. The picture below is a good example of this. Looking for the perfect textures is something that I enjoy immensely. This weekend I will be traveling around my lovely city (London) armed with my camera, taking pictures of walls, bricks, old wood and any other texture that will blend nicely with the Victorian setting in my book. Hope you all have a lovely weekend! And remember, if you live in the UK, clocks go back one hour on Sunday.

Amelia Dyer

If you have a look at the porch you will see that some textures are missing, the curb needs texturing too and the portico has penetrated the window ledge. The street is too clean so I will somehow have to fix that too.

Welcome to “the Crying Baby”!

Amelia’s own restaurant… (a word of advice: don’t order any meat).

 

Amelia Dyer at the Crying Baby

“Fancy my delicious brown sugar and honey crusted ham for Sunday lunch?”

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