Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Illustration: The Bluestocking Firefly

A blog banner I did for my friend Makenzi. I was doing a new banner for myself (currently still awaiting completion) and since her birthday was coming up, I thought I'd do one for her at the same time, as her blog was bannerless. 

Her fabulous (but currently far too lonely) blog The Bluestocking Firefly is filled with excerpts from her lovely stories. (Go read them!) Many of them have an historical or olde world flavour, which is why I went with a bookish regency maiden, rather than an earlier concept of a firefly (suitably attired in blue stockings) writing on a scroll of paper. 

Below you see an animated progression of this piece. Stages shown are as follows:

Initial Concept Sketch > Pencil Linework > Digital Colour Study > Linework traced onto Watercolour paper > Painting Stage 1 > Painting Stage 2 > Painting Stage 3 > Finished Painting > Adjustments & Text in Photoshop.

I had a lot of fun painting the dusky light (a lot of Payne's Grey was involved) but although in person it looks dark enough, I adjusted the scan so that the text and firefly glow would stand out more. 

Winsor & Newton watercolours and Adobe Photoshop CS4.
The font used is the lovely Recherche – with additions by me.


  1. Hello....I am a childhood friend of McKenzies mom. She wanted me to see your art because I am an artist as well. Your pictures are wonderful!! We're in Oregon and she is staying the weekend with me. I am self-taught..(learned the hard way.) How exciting it must be to be in your shoes!!! karen

  2. Hi Karen!
    Thank you so much! You should post some of your artwork on your own blog. What do you paint?
    I think most art is 'learning the hard way', whether you have classes or not, a bit of struggle is probably good for the overall piece, or at least for the soul, right? =P



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