This is the final part of the tools I use and today I’m going to talk about technology. When I first started out on my illustration adventure technology wasn’t something I had given much thought to using. But ask me about it today and I’ll tell you I cant live without it!
I was an oil painter in art school so never received much education when it came to digital art and illustration. Since I graduated I’ve been on a long journey of self taught experiments. The internet is a well of information and you can learn to do pretty much anything if you search hard enough.
At the moment my main tools are Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator. I use them on a mac computer because I like the big screen. It took me a while to get to grips with these programs but they are definitely two of the top skills I've taught myself. I use photoshop for everything, touch ups to full scale illustrations. Illustrator is a newly learnt skill but has played an important role in learning to design stationery.
To get art work from paper to screen I use a canon scanner and printer. I think the most important thing when starting up an illustration career is to have a good scanner and a fairly decent computer. You don’t have to get the top of the range but something that keeps the progression of your work flow quick and high quality. I scan everything at 600 dpi and for paintings larger than the scanning plate I use the photo merge function in photoshop. For many years I was scanning all the parts of the painting and then trying to digitally match it all back together by hand. Discovering photo-merge was magic! It does all that work for me and left me feeling like an idiot I’d taken so long to find it.
I have a little Wacom Intuos tablet, nothing fancy, but it gets the digital drawing part of the job done. I also use an iPad Pro and Apple Pencil for the days I do want to feel fancy. It’s the newest addition to my collection and has lead me to producing more purely digital illustration. This is something I had wanted to do for a while but the practicality of the pencil and ipad make it so simple to do. A lot of the illustrations on this blog are create on there using either adobe sketch or procreate.
And thats it! It’s a simple set up but the benefit of learning to use all this technology is I've produce better work and can create in my small studio space. It’s allowed me to be far more productive than I ever was in a big painting studio.
If you have any questions leave a comment or send me a message. And if anyone has tips on what A3 printer to buy I would love to know. I think that will be the next big technological investment.