art, BLUES, design, drawing, illustration, illustrator, innovation, levinland, lon levin, Milton Glaser, MUSIC, painter, PINETOP PERKINS, sketching, this week in digital media on blogtalk radio, xanate media
Yesterday I was playing around with this sketch of Pinetop Perkins. I was reading something about him on the internet and listening to some of his music and I started drawing. As I drew I thought I’d add some color to the art. I had seen a poster I liked and I wanted to try doing a piece that looked like it.
As I went along I decided to finish up with a limited palette using only my brush tools in photoshop. The rougher and more spontaneous the strokes the better. I was fighting my safety blanket of rendering everything smnoothly and realistically trying to maintain a fresh and clean approach. As I did this I started to wonder what this was gonna end up being. I had to add some type as this was suppose to be a poster of some type so I started to play with fonts. I avoided going into illustrator to make the type perfect, I wanted to handicap myself with designing in photoshop trying to keep a more grungy feel. (aside from the fact I am not a typographer or a logo artist). I liked what I was doing but it needed something else to obliterate the clean fresh kind of sterile look. So I added a background overlay and used some effects on the layers and I got something I liked. I added the type in and distorted and played around with it. I realized I had come to a point that I hadn’t envisioned when I started but I liked it better than the original thought and it felt more original and less derivative than it could’ve been. So I stopped. Once I got there I thought this is a good way to work. Fast, efficient and fresh. I’ve decided to do more of these using other bluesman and jazz artists. Music seems to fit this look quite well. This also seems like a great way to show other readers and illustrators how I work and how this style can be accomplished. Anyone who wants to know more specifics about the process I used is welcomed to ask. Nothing to hide here.