Wednesday, 19 December 2012

Drawing graffiti creatively

Drawing graffiti creatively can be a challenge, and I don't mean hanging off dangerous buildings just to show off you can create a bit of vandalism over railway bridges! This is not something I would encourage at all. However the art of graffiti can be used to create interesting graphic effects, maybe towards a design for a poster to promote something, or an album cover?

Drawing graffiti creatively: As some of you may know I am trying to get into the habit of sharing my 'how to draw' videos with you! I do not profess to be an expert on graffiti at all, but this tutorial is aimed at helping you to improve your drawing skills mainly. A bit of an odd one, but apparently something people want to know and Google about. Obviously I have done it from the perspective of an illustrator and have broken it down into simple, easy to follow shapes that everyone can have a go at!

If you would like to follow this video and learn about drawing elephants, you'll need a sharpened pencil, or better still a technical pencil, which never needs to be sharpened, a good eraser, a range of coloured pencils and a sheet of cartridge paper to draw on. The advantage of watching and following this video is that you can hit 'pause' whenever you like or even go back over something again if you need to! Once you've had a go in pencil, maybe try stretching some watercolour paper, do it again and this time try some colour and paint it using watercolors or maybe coloured inks? If you draw it more than once, you can experiment with a range of colour mediums, just for fun! For instructions on how to stretch paper, see my blogspot blog.

I would love to get feedback from and you so by all means use the message box on this page to send me your thoughts on this video. If you would like to see more videos I have worked on, just got to www.videojug.com here! Or visit my blogspot blog page, where you can find many more tutorials and tips, click here!

Friday, 14 December 2012

The French Horn pub


Here is some artwork I haven’t shared with anyone on my website to date, and is a combination of conventional pen and ink, which has then been digitally coloured. It was a commission for The French Horn pub in Steppingley, Bedfordshire.


The French Horn pub: They wanted an illustration of a character that could become their logo and a sort guide on their website. As the name might suggest they wanted it to include a French Horn. They also wanted the character to be dressed in early nineteenth century, which for me was great fun, as I love doing period artwork.
The final image was to be used on their letter headed paper, leaflets, posters and of course their website. Therefore the final image really needed to be digital. However because it was an early nineteenth century character we wanted it to have a traditional quality too. I therefore did the black and white line work using a traditional mapping pen and black ink. This was then scanned and digitally coloured, using flat colour to give a quite graphic feel. I ended up doing the character in cool and warm colours to give the client maximum choice when using the logo. If you want to see my logo in use, please visit the pub’s website, which is lovely and very tempting: The French Horn
Here are the results. He’s quite a fun character I feel, and a touch Dickensian, wouldn’t you say?




Wednesday, 12 December 2012

Christmas illustrations


It's the season to be merry and so I thought I'd share some my Christmas illustrations with you this week. Some of these can be found elsewhere on this website, but today's selection can only be found in this post!


Christmas illustrations: I have created Christmas illustrations for Heritage Art Papers and for the last few years I have been creating my own Christmas cards with a range of different themes. Last year it was Christmas mice and the year before a dragon dressed as Santa (yes you read correctly). However this year I have been so busy with freelance work that I have not had the time, which is good news for me, but not so good for all my friends expecting a Lyn Stone original.

Today I thought I would share with you my reindeer Christmas cards that I created for Heritage Art Papers. I had produced them for my own use and HAP loved them so much they paid for the set to use themselves and sell through shops throughout the United Kingdom. If you want to see more Christmas illustrations, try some of my links above or why not visit Heritage Art Paper.

The following illustrations were created using pen and coloured inks. I used a mixture or wet in wet and dry.






Friday, 7 December 2012

Drawing elephants

Now for something different – drawing elephants. I am trying to get into the habit of sharing my ‘how to draw’ videos with you! This  tutorial is aimed at helping you to improve your drawings skills and produce a really good drawing of an elephant. A bit of an odd one, but apparently something people want to know and Google about. Obviously I have done it from the perspective of an illustrator and have broken it down into simple, easy to follow shapes that everyone can have a go at! The same technique can be applied to many animals.


Drawing elephants: If you would like to follow this video and learn about drawing elephants, you’ll need a sharpened pencil, or better still a technical pencil, which never needs to be sharpened, a good eraser, and a sheet of cartridge paper to draw on. The advantage of watching and following this video is that you can hit ‘pause’ whenever you like or even go back over something again if you need to! Once you’ve had a go in pencil, maybe try stretching some watercolour paper, do it again and this time try some colour and paint it using watercolors or maybe coloured inks? If you draw it more than once, you can experiment with a range of colour mediums, just for fun!

I would love to get feedback from and you so by all means use the message box on this page to send me your thoughts on this video. If you would like to see more videos I have worked on, just got to www.videojug.com here! 


How to stretch paper

A few notes on stretching paper. You will need a sturdy board, maybe ply wood, or MDF. If you use MDF it will need to be fairly thick, as it is quite bendy and paper is surprisingly strong! You will also need paper tape. A container with water in it - to be honest a bath is ideal. Cut the paper tape into lengths a little longer than the paper size (by about three inches each end). Place the paper into the water and submerge. This only needs to be in the water for no more than about forty seconds to a minute. Take it out and hold by one corner allowing the excess water to drain off. Place the paper on your board and then with a cloth, take off the excess water. I find a towel works well, placed over the paper and 'padded' down. Then very quickly soak your paper tape strips in water and lay it down swiftly along each edge of the paper. This will tape the paper down to the board. Then allow to dry thoroughly before working on it.

Wednesday, 5 December 2012

Writing picture books


Writing picture books is far harder than you’d think and very multi-layered! I came up with an idea a few months ago for a picture book and am still working on it. Firstly it has grown into three books. Secondly just coming up with a great idea is not enough at all it would seem.


Writing picture books: I’m afraid I cannot share my picture book idea with you, because that would be daft beyond belief, but as my blog is a bit like a diary, I can at least share my thoughts. Luckily my agent also happens to be one of life’s natural teachers – in fact he can’t help himself, but he is very good at it! Having successfully published a number of picture books himself that he wrote and illustrated, he is the ideal person to guide me through this minefield! Just coming up with idea is not enough, because immediately you’ve just got a two-dimensional storyline that lacks any real depth, and there is a danger that your great idea can end up being flat and go out with a whimper. I have discovered that just like a cake, you’ve got to layer your ideas and give your story substance and a more three-dimensional feel. The more you put in, the better it gets!
Having battled with adding an extra layer to my original idea, I am now going to have a bash at doing some thumbnail sketches, to thrash out some ideas. This will no doubt feed back into the original manuscript and result in changes to wording and possibly characters. It’s exciting for me to be working on the words as well as the pictures for a change. Hopefully at some stage in the rather distant future, if this project goes ahead I may be able to share some actual artwork with you. However if you want to see more updates on what I am doing these days, and writing picture books you can also visit my blogspot blog right here!

Monday, 3 December 2012

Agatha Christie 1920s

Agatha Christie 1920s – a decade in which we are introduced to so many of her most famous characters: Tommy and Tuppence, and of course Poirot to name, but a few!

Agatha Christie 1920s: So having done quite a few spreads, which are set in the 1920s, I thought it would be nice to share some of the artwork with you. Some of the early novels I have illustrated for The Agatha Christie Book Collection include The Secret Adversary, Poirot’s Early Cases, The Mysterious Mr Quin, and my favourite Five Little Pigs.
For all of these I had to research costume styles for both men and women, hairstyles, shoes and accessories. Vitally this needed to be combined with what a character would wear. For instance let’s say a novel is set in 1926, but one of the characters is a bit of a stuffed shirt and very out of fashion. I would probably dress them in something from 1923 with an out-moded hairstyle too. All these things have to be considered when researching the period. Another consideration is the decor too. Luckily I have a very useful collection of magazines from the 1980s, called Times Past, which covers quite a few of the decades I have been illustrating. It was a weekly magazine, much like The Agatha Christie Book Collection and featured interiors, furniture and objet d’art from the Victorian, Edwardian, 1920s, 1930s and 1940s periods.
Heres are a few pieces of artwork from the 1920s books I have illustrated:
Tommy and Tuppence
Hercule Poirot and Mrs Ariadne Oliver. These were not illustrated for a book set in the 1920s, but as they are both characters that both feature in Christie’s early novels I am including them into today’s blog!


The Mysterious Mr Quin