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- What is illustrative design?
- Establishing a creative brief
- Defining client expectations
- Exploring creative thinking exercises
- Art directing your drawing
- Selecting an appropriate style for each project
- Drawing and thumbnail sketching
- Discerning anchor point placement
- Building vector drawings with shapes
- Presenting your illustrations
Skill Level Intermediate
When it comes to illustrative design analog methods facilitate digital workflows. We'll go into that in more detail a little later, but that said, you'll need some basic analog drawing tools and supplies to create your design. That's right, I said analog. First you'll need an ink pen, any type of ink pen will work, I just happened to prefer the Papermate Flair pens myself. You'll use a pen to do quick thumbnail drawings or take notes to capture the essence of ideas quickly.
You can obviously do thumbnail drawings with a pencil. I just find a pen forces you not to overthink an idea. You're not refining, you are mining at this stage. You'll also need a sketchbook or paper. Any type of paper can be used to draw your initial sketches on. Literally anything is acceptable. You can't always control inspiring moments, so whatever you have at the moment will work. Personally I find sketchbooks confining, so I prefer keeping a notepad nearby.
When inspired I draw on that. It also allows me to tear it off and put it in the project folder guilt free as well. A regular pencil is ideal for doing rough sketches and refining ideas as you form and shape your drawn design. You'll want to use a mechanical pencil to take your rough sketch and draw out a refined final sketch which you'll use to build from digitally in Vector form. At times a ruler can be helpful to draw straight edges and of course an eraser is mandatory, since we'll be drawing and redrawing in order to refine the design.
Having a light box really helps when you begin making refinements to your drawn design. Being able to draw on top of your original sketch to improve shapes is what illustrative design is all about. I recommend a good quality tracing paper, preferably one that won't rip easily if you erase and redraw in the same area a few times. I am a paper snob myself and prefer using higher-quality paper because it's durable and works well three to four layers deep when drawing on a light box.
These are all the analog tools you'll need to produce the illustrative designs I'll cover in this course. Remember how much you love doing art as a kid? It's time to reawaken that passion and put the fun back in fundamentals.
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