|This year's idea sketches |
with the last two years artwork in the background.
It's that time of year, when I start thinking about creating the artwork for Granville's Hot Licks Bluesfest. This year, the headliners are: Johnny Winter and Rory Block, two super talented blues giants.
I found some really cool reference photos and started working with those, keeping as far from the exact photo as I could (I don't want to get a letter from some photographer's copyright attorney). I kept getting nowhere. The sketches were dull, something was missing. I wasn't getting what I wanted. It was driving me crazy. There were some "O.K." designs but this is the Hot Licks Bluesfest...O.K. wouldn't cut it!
Then, I realized that I was too focused on the reference photos. I kept forcing the poster design to conform to the pictures. They were preventing me from finding a great solution to the poster design.
I put everything away and started over, trying to capture an overall energy in the composition. After I got a descent design, I could find or construct some photo reference to support it. Plus, this wasn't suppose to be a Johnny Winter or Rory Block poster. It's a Hot Licks Bluesfest poster. Although I like to include something that relates to the headliner, it isn't a portrait.
|Thumbnail (idea) sketches approx. 1.5 x 2.5 inches.|
Finally! I started to see something that I liked. The sketch on the left seemed a little too country. It's the Blues-fest...not Country-fest.
|Note to self: |
Remember to keep it simple. Focus on big shapes instead of detail.
Detail will come later.
Then, from the thumbnail sketch, I enlarged the design and blocked in the shapes
|Sketches were done on tracing paper so that I could refine the drawing and add more detail on each layer.|
Then it started to feel right. It had some energy. It had some burn and despair...it's the Blues, baby. And, I could finally stop singin' the Blues Poster Blues.