Thursday, October 9, 2014

I Used To Be An Illustrator

......a while back.

Sometimes I do illustration work but these days, when I do it primarily, I do it to sketch out image ideas (character design, costume concepts) for films.

I did illustration work for book projects, music events and bands, restaurants, and websites.  It was not a bad gig!  When I was in Los Angeles, I got tired of working on other peoples films--I got tired of films in general which may or may not have had to do with me feeling "out of sorts" when I lived in L.A. because........because I do have a love and appreciation for Los Angeles's just not my thing.  It's just not a place where I felt comfortable living for an extended period of time.  The weather, the culture, it's just not my thing.

So when I lived in L.A., I started doing professional illustration work.  It taught me a lot about running a small business, deadlines, dealing with clients, etc., those sorts of things.  It was nice and it was a good break from working on sets (where I usually was part of the art dept.).  My work got featured in some galleries in Los Angeles and Chicago (I continued to do illustration work for a while after I moved to Chicago) and in some group shows.  I sold some work and made some money.  Overall, my experiences doing illustration work were very positive.  There were a few clients who were pills but, whatever, that's life.  I look back on my "illustrator period" very fondly.

I don't do professional illustration work anymore so I don't really have an outlet or website at this point to display some of my old favorites.  Is it completely cohesive to put up a page on here--an indie film production blog--to show old illustration work?  No, not really.  But where else should I put them?  Where else could they go?

So I figure "what the heck", why not?  I might as well.  Just for the fun of it and those who enjoy my film work will be able to see visual/thematic circuits between my old illustrations and the kinds of work that I do now through the medium of film storytelling.

As you can see, I like to explore a certain range of subjects.  Although the mediums through which these ideas are expressed (from illustrations--whoosh!--all the way over to moving images) are quite different, these kinds of visuals will probably not surprise you (lots of darkness but camp and color and all that kind of stuff--I'm very predictable in my tastes and offer no apologies!).

Some of the work here is really weird (well, of course) but, believe it or not, I was just going with what the clients requested because they wanted a specific moment of a story visualized or they wanted to feature a certain kind of tone, etc.  So, yes, a lot of the strangeness is my own fault but I can't take the blame for it entirely (I worked for some very cool and unusual people).

These illustrations (my favorite ones) were made at various points between 2003 and 2010 depending on the project for which they were created.