Penelope 2017

With 2017 comes new art goals for me! Over the past few years I sort of stopped drawing as much in favor of blogging, then later, cosplay. I’m now trying to find a balance of the 3 hobbies…easier said than done though, huh?

I’ve shared my original character Penelope before (here & here) so I wanted to share a few more.

Kyla Is Inspired | Penelope the Pin-Up Space Cadet
Kyla Is Inspired | Penelope the Pin-Up Space Cadet
Kyla Is Inspired | Penelope the Pin-Up Space Cadet

I like using Penelope as an exercise to try out different styles; the top is vector (my typical style) and the bottom was drawn on Procreate.

Do you have an original character you’ve created? I’d love to see if you do!

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Digital Painting v. Vector

I recently decided to revamp and old illustration of mine (circa 2009), but I wanted to try doing it as both a vector and digital painting. I’m primarily a vector artist; all my illustrations are done in illustrator, and I haven’t colored anything in photoshop in about 6 years. So to challenge myself, I did the same girl in both formats! I started with the same sketch for each, and I think the results are pretty interesting.

Digital Painting v. Vector

Creating the vector was easy, since it’s a format I use all the time. I like the way she turned out!

Digital Painting v. Vector
Digital Painting v. Vector

The digital painting was more challenging; like I mentioned, I haven’t colored in photoshop in years. This didn’t take quite as long as the vector, but oh man was it challenging! One thing I like about painting is that things shade so easily. With vectors, each individual shape is drawn by hand, so it’s very time-intensive. I loved just swiping my pen and immediately seeing shading happen!

Digital Painting v. Vector
Digital Painting v. Vector

I definitely need practice in photoshop if I’m going to continue with digital paintings, since it got frustrating at times (although that tends to happen while trying new things). I ended up liking the ethereal look of the painting, it’s so different from the geometric shapes of the vector. Isn’t it funny looking at the same drawing different ways?

If you’re a digital artist, what programs do you use? Do you do digital paintings or vectors?

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Pattern | Noragami

Can we talk about the anime Noragami for a moment? I’ve been watching this from the start (though I haven’t read the manga) and it’s absolutely in my top 3 anime shows.

In times of need, if you look in the right place, you just may see a strange telephone number scrawled in red. If you call this number, you will hear a young man introduce himself as the Yato God.

It follows the story of “delivery god” Yato and his regalia, a young boy who acts as his weapon in times of battle. Their unlikely friend is Hiyori Iki, a young schoolgirl who saves Yato, but accidentally causes her lose her body at random times. She can travel around in her spirt form (with a tail), but she pesters Yato the entire series to return her to her normal spirit life.

That’s the most basic explanation of the show; you really need to see it for yourself. To show my appreciation, I drew some of the elements in the show and made a pattern!

Kyla Is Inspired | Noragami Pattern

I love this show so much, that I’ve even decided to cosplay one of the characters for Anime Boston! I’ll be doing a full write-up and how to after the con.

Kyla Is Inspired | Noragami Pattern

(you can purchase this pattern in products from red bubble)

Do you have a favorite show or anime you’re watching right now? Or maybe something older that will always hold a special place in your heart?

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Happy Hearts Day

Happy Valentines Day, all! The holiday we all love to hate, right? The hallmark holiday? Personally, I love Valentine’s, mostly because it’s a great excuse to eat a fancy meal, drink some wine, and dress up. I found this doodle in my old drafts folder and decided to spruce her up in time for the holiday ;)

Kyla Is Inspired | Happy Hearts Day

What are your plans for Valentine’s day? Eating anything good?

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Illustration Progression

So if you’re a long time blog reader, you might remember me posting my Alice Madness illustration back in 2014, but I thought it would be interesting to post a bit about progression.

Lately I have been feeling like what I’m producing hasn’t been good enough. By what standards? I’m not entirely sure. There’s no one out there judging my work against anyone else’s, and I need to remember that there will always be someone better than me. I’ve been struggling with motivation – motivation to start projects and motivation to finish the ones I do manage to start. I started browsing my Deviantart gallery (dating back to 2006, ouch) and I realized that yeah, I’m a LOT better than I was 10 years ago.

One piece in particular stood out to me, my But Why? Alice piece that I’ve now done three times. Crazy to see the progression, huh? I mean…my first Alice barely had a face, and the card guard had no nose. Not to mention I didn’t seem to stay in the lines with the coloring.

Alice Illustration Progress | Kyla Is Inspired

Let’s look at the entire piece:

Alice Illustration Progress | Kyla Is Inspired

Alice Illustration Progress | Kyla Is Inspired

Alice Illustration Progress | Kyla Is Inspired

Wow. It’s impossible for me to look at this and not have confidence that I’ll get better; the proof is right there.

As we near the end of 2015, it’s time to make goals for the next year. I challenge you all to go back and take a look at some of your early works; maybe it’s an illustration or design, or cosplay costume, or even a blog post and compare it to recent works. How have you progressed? Celebrate it; every time you make something, you’re learning and getting better. If you end up sharing your progression, let me know! I would love to see it.

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