assignment 4: A magazine illustration

When first reading the brief, I was really excited to to this assignment. I really enjoy assignments or exercise that would put you in real life working illustrator situations and see how you can handle it. Such as the fish menu and the museum poster exercises.

I started off with a spider diagram to help me decided which topic I wanted to work with. I felt that writing down all I can think of really helped me to visualize the topics and how they could be created into a still life illustration. I also asked my husband for ideas after i was done brainstorming the topics to see if we had similarities in our ideas. Everything he said was written in pink, so we had many similarities and he had really nice visions for what I could draw too.

it also helped to make small sketches while thinking of new ideas.  IMG_1964



After that I looked on google images to help me with more visuals. when I pictured the word lost, I was originally thinking of ‘being lost’ instead of ‘lost items’. So I researched images for being lost.


40870141_8861842 On_the_forest_ground_by_steppeland Metal-Compass-With-Cover_20090669393

Then I did some research on items lost. What do we normally loose? Phone, keys,rings, glasses, socks, wallet. Lost-and-Found-2 lost_700Deb_Mostert_Modern_Day_Slavery_Plastic_Dolls_Shoes_and_Novelty_Key_ringThis image shows lost barbie and doll shoes as a still life. cool idea for things lost.


After this, I decided to look up images for DISASTER. It started with a survival kit. I thought the items could be perfectly for a still life. I even found many illustrations online of survival kits. I was contemplating illustrating a zombie apocalypse survival kit that I have heard so much about.

zombie-survival-kit-by-zeke-tucker tumblr_mdskmjnpiO1rn6ts4o1_1280 the-survival-store-s-large-ultimate-survival-kit-9448-p survivalkit Hemp-rope-1essential_survival_kit_zombie_apocalypse

Eventually, my research went back to my original idea of disaster and that was of the natural kind. And how it affects and changes peoples lives or destroys their home. I found images of broken picture frames and interior of homes after a natural disaster. I was keeping in the back of my mind that this would have to be a still life. Not a landscape. To me a still life means drawing from observation. Instead I was drawing a still life from imagination and internet picture resources.

glass f0510814cd43e175ede2aeef3e9022ff9d0d8d92_large.  1366584759-27th-anniversary-of-chernobyl-nuclear-disaster_1980040







Above are my first studies. I really thought that the colors and tone would really effect the atmosphere of the picture. Because disaster is so, well, disastrous and sad I wanted to use blues. Or I thought about using reds and oranges too.  The colors were eeventually decided through which materials I wanted to use and whichcolors I own of those materials. I have these paint markers that I like. They dry fast and are easy to use.


IMG_1969 IMG_1968

my color studies of these images worked out well I thought. The one at the bottem was a little bit more organized with detail. the one at the top is shows hazard and is less controlled. But the top reminded me of a little of Pablo Picasso’s still lifes. I like them, but I want my work to be fresh and new. From here I moved on again and thought about the word LOST. I wasn’t sure which topic I would use. So I made some color studies for the word lost.




I used the images from google to help me come up with the idea for lost. I wanted to show someone who went on a hike and then got lost in the woods with only minimal amount of things. But it still needs to look like a still life. Thats what the client wants. I could pile all these object ontop of one another. it maybe the still life in on the ground. With objects scattered around the feet so you can understand the story.


I kept drawing so I can bring on new ideas. I thought about “lost items”

I began with drawing some lost items that I mentioned previously. I tried placing them on top of each other and keeping the separate.




Here is another more refined illustration of lost items. IMG_1977


I had three pretty good ideas. So now I wanted to add them on photoshop and just put them into a magazine article so I could see if it works. First i researched magazine layouts with illustrations.




Then I started playing with the colors and filters on photoshop. Adjusting the saturation and contrast.

Screen Shot 2014-07-29 at 2.53.09 PMScreen Shot 2014-07-29 at 2.48.13 PM


Above are some color experiments for the word disaster. My plan was just to see how it would fit into an article, but then things started coming together and I got a bit carried away.

Screen Shot 2014-07-29 at 3.22.53 PM Screen Shot 2014-07-29 at 3.20.32 PM Screen Shot 2014-07-29 at 3.19.59 PM Screen Shot 2014-07-29 at 3.14.40 PMScreen Shot 2014-07-29 at 3.24.51 PM Screen Shot 2014-07-29 at 3.24.11 PM

I used an article from a magazine and took out the illustration and changed the headline. The type on the page has nothing to do with disaster or lost but it helps me to visualize the piece. I know that this would be the job for the magazine’s designer, but it helped me to see what could work for an editorial piece.  My favorite one is the last one of the series.

Screen Shot 2014-07-29 at 4.20.58 PM Screen Shot 2014-07-29 at 4.19.48 PM Screen Shot 2014-07-29 at 4.18.38 PM Screen Shot 2014-07-29 at 3.34.28 PM





Above is for the topic LOST ‘lost in the woods’. I thought the last one with the original color actually looked the best. But I was worried that it didn’t look enough like a still life, so I kept working on the other “LOST”.


Screen Shot 2014-07-29 at 4.14.28 PM Screen Shot 2014-07-29 at 3.46.11 PM

Here I took the illustration of things that are most commonly lost. I upped the transparency of the illustration and placed it on the bottom of the page. I think doing that helps to see the objects are fading away, becoming lost. However, it may have been over worked digitally and that takes away the vibrancy of the original illustration.



This is my final illustration for the assignment. It was only a color and composition study to begin with, but after putting it on photoshop and when I saw it with the article, I think it works well as a finished piece. I like this one because I think you can see it as a disaster. A natural disaster I hope. it could also be for burglary, but I was aiming for earthquake. I also think this works the best as a still life. Its what the client asked for in the brief. This image can also be used as A3, running across the bottom of two pages in a magazine. I think the most challenging this about this exercise is not to attempt to create a drawing for all of them. It fun to take one word, an open brief and adapt it as an illustrator. As I looked at other OCA students work, it was great to see where they took the topics and the brief. If I could improve this, I would maybe see what it looked like more refined and cleaned up. Bu this is a disaster, nothing about a disaster is clean. So the jagged lines and messiness relate to the topic. I think the broken picture frame is really the focal point of the image. I was going to add a broken doll but that was just too depressing. The broken picture frame shows that these disasters happen to people, just like you and me. People loose their homes, valuables and families.


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