I created a number of nature assets early this year in an attempt to streamline some of my environmental illustration processes. Included were a series of rock formations, trees and bushes. This composition is the first attempt at illustrating using those pre-fabricated elements.
I recently wrapped a process breakdown of this illustration for Serif, the makers of Affinity Designer (my go-to digital illustration software) – look for it in the early part of 2018!
A recent personal project, exploring refinements to my illustration style (a constant tinkering). There is something unbelievably peaceful about a mountain lake at night. It's a special kind of calm and quiet.
I've had a number of illustration projects on the go lately (will be published once they are live by the client), that have taken me into environments other than the outdoors. It's been a ton of fun but I've found myself missing my adventures in the digital great outdoors. Carved out some time this past weekend for a 3 day hike of sorts! :-) Still diggin' Affinity Designer and the awesome brushes created by Frankentoon. Hope you enjoy.
A friend and co-worker of mine approached me recently to redesign and illustrate the cover of a book he published a few years back. He gave me free reign with the creative, so I took full advantage of the opportunity! Included are a few captures of the project.
Earlier this year (2017), I started work on a series of cover illustrations for the Henry Tibbett series by Patricia Moyes, published by Felony & Mayhem Press. Below are four of the eight completed thus far.
This past summer I had the opportunity to FINALLY hike/camp the back country of Jasper National Park with my wife (first time in our 25 years together!). As a way of commemorating the awesome trip and welcoming her to the "club," I created this illustration. Per her request, she's seated on a fallen log, pack and trekking pole cast aside as she takes in the beauty and tranquillity of her new found "favourite place."
The winter months are when I ache to escape the city, traffic and general craziness of life the most; transport myself months in the future (I'm a summer soul), and hundreds of miles away. Something special about the solitude and simplicity found around a campfire at the edge of a mountain lake.
An illustration exploring the ever increasing grip social media has on our time, our lives and even our sense of worth.
A fun little illustrative poke at those who camp in box store parking lots or the numerous RV pastures that dot the countryside. Nothing quite like having the great outdoors on your doorstep and deciding to either confine yourself under an awning or lock yourself away within the confines of 4 walls on wheels.
My second illustration using new software (Affinity Designer) - a tribute to my time in the mountains this year (multiple hikes, camping and road trips with the family). Absolutely love the peace and solitude found in amazing natural spaces.
Was fortunate to work with Global Blue in their publication of SHOP magazine's Spring/Summer 2016 edition - Lake Saimaa region.
Lake Saimaa is a popular summertime resort destination located in south eastern Finland. SHOP magazine covers many of the world's top travel destinations, highlighting tax-free shopping opportunities.
I've been experimenting with new software (Affinity Designer) and slight tweaks to my base illustration style. This latest project features an outdoor setting (big surprise), limited colour palette and more extremes in the lighting.
I've never been a big fan of winter. To start, it's bitterly cold, it's darker longer than it's light out and I don't really care much for snow (odd to say given I've lived in the Great White North my entire life). Subsequently, most of my personal illustration projects revolve around my love of the fair weather months and my time playing in the mountains.
For this project, I decided to get over myself and embrace the challenge of illustrating winter. Have to say (although it's hard to admit), this was a blast to complete. I'm really glad I tackled something outside of my comfort zone. To mix things up a touch and add a bit of a narrative to the illustration, I included a snowmobile and some foot prints that lead off the edge of the painting. Is the rider off exploring on foot or has he made a fatal mistake in crossing the ice?
Earlier this year I challenged myself to a lunch hour project. One camping related illustration per day for 10 days. Each illustration would be limited to one hour - start to finish. These are the results of those 10 days.
Inspired by a family trip through the Rocky Mountains this past summer. There is something special about being in the wild places of the world - spending the days (and nights) soaking in every last drop.
The illustration that started the underwater series - wanted to expand the technique palette within my illustration style so I flattened things out and added more organic textures to contrast the sharp angular lines of the low poly base.
Continuing the underwater series, I took a slightly less conceptual spin on the subject matter - having the jellyfish in the background of the orca double as clouds floating in an underwater sky.
A continuation of my underwater series. For this project, I toyed with the ideas of fear of the dark and the unknown. Often when confronted with our fears, we often make the challenge of them bigger than they truly are.
This illustration started out as a simple interpretation of an old family photo taken at the Athabasca Falls. I decided to spice it up a bit by altering the scene - adding the canoeist, rounding a corner that reveals the portion of the trip he may not have been planning on.
Every year my family heads to this site to camp. We start the Summer with plans of exploring other areas but are always drawn back to the same place. It is special to us and feels like our home away from home. We know all of the trails, the bends in the river and the best hide-aways. Each Spring the thaw reveals a slightly different landscape - something familiar and welcoming yet new and surprising.
Featured illustration for last years Christmas Eve church service and introductory sermon series for Ellerslie Road Baptist Church in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada.
The title "A Story Runs Through It" was supplied by the pastoral leadership at Ellersie with the explanation that Christ's story is like a ribbon - extending from the Old to New Testament. Familiar Christmas imagery was to be incorporated.
I'm fortunate to have a fair degree of creative freedom with the projects I work on for Ellerslie. In this instance a number of key visuals were incorporated - a ribbon (bound around a gift given), a pathway (reflecting the connection of Moses through to the manger), a Christmas tree, a manger scene and a guiding light in the night sky (that also acts as the star on the top of the landscape Christmas tree).
The concept came together rather quickly given the abstract nature of the title. Beyond the elements noted above, I selected a rich purple for the primary colour - working off of its royal association, added warm highlights that draw the eye to the small, humble lit window of the manger scene in the background. Final touch was the title incorporation - using the "O" as a doorway for one to pass through.