Tuesday, April 3, 2012

WIP and the Panic Stage

I've been working on a piece and I thought I would share some of the steps I've done, and, in particular, the panic stage of my process.
Here's the scanned drawing:

It came out yellowy because I drew it in my moleskine sketchbook, neat eh?
 Below is a screenshot of all the layers that I will be using. All of them, except for "Background" will be on "Multiply" for transparency.

So what is the 'panic stage'? For me, it's the point in your creative process where you sort of realize that your art piece looks like crap and you panic, which usually kicks in anywhere in the beginning to the middle of the process. This is especially applicable to me because most of the time I don't fully plan out how an illustration will look, I just wing it. It's a fairly intuitive process. 
The panic stage involves me mostly scrambling about over the piece, aimlessly applying colors and textures to figure out what resonates best, while simultaneously fighting negative thoughts about my ability to make art. This happens every time without fail. This stage can last ten minutes and I immediately figure out that whatever I'm doing is looking good, or it can last months and I'll put the piece aside in despair. But eventually I come back to it with a fresh mind, roll up my sleeves, and get back to work.
With this piece in particular, my panic stage began after I was coloring the plants. I realized that I was coloring them too blurry and pale:

But you see, the panic stage is a lesson in patience and about being kind to yourself; it's a moment of soul-searching:

Therefore, the only way to overcome the panic stage is to simply work with it patiently and not get upset. Color application after each color application gets one closer to finishing.

Here I colored the wall brown. It looked good as a dark neutral that enveloped the scene nicely but I eventually opted for something more vibrant to juxtapose her very drab outfit and expression, as if the room was a metaphor for her internal state of being. 

  But I could be totally wrong about these color choices so I'll continue to work on this piece later since I have to work on my research papers.
Who knows how this piece will look in the end--we'll see!

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