My Colored Pencil Illustrations

Updated: Sep 19, 2021

Hello everyone! Today I'm taking a quick break from my advice and how-to posts to share some of my illustration work. These are all fanart pieces from a few of my favorite animated movies. They were made with colored pencils on cold-pressed watercolor paper.


I created these pieces to find out if I wanted to lean more into illustration or not. I personally find when I'm curious about something or I admire a particular thing, copying it gives me insight into how it was created and let's me get a feel for that genre. I can then decide whether or not to pursue it more seriously or move on to something else.


That being said, I'm currently going further into the illustration realm with a personal project. As I mentioned in my last newsletter, I'm going to be keeping that one under wraps for a little while. For one, it keeps the pressure low. I'm still trying to decide if I want to pursue illustration more professionally or not, and I'd rather work through those feelings on my own without an audience. It's just my preference. Additionally, it lets me work more organically rather than rushing through the process just to post. This is my first project like this, so there are sure to be obstacles along the way. I don't want to feel the pressure of posting while working through the unknowns. However, I'll still be sharing some fanart and other work while this bubbles on the back burner. (Other Mother and Other Father are currently on the drawing board. Literally.)


With that said, let's dive into the most recent illustrations I've made and what inspired them!


Song of the Sea

This hand-drawn movie is absolutely incredible! And what's even more incredible is that no one ever seems to know about it! I don't want to spoil the plot and parallels within the story, but it revolves around a young boy who discovers his sister is of fae origin and that she has a very important job in the fairy world. The movie also shares different traditional Irish folklore and characters. If you haven't seen it yet, I highly recommend it for your next movie night. It's so, so good.


This piece took me over six months to finish and totaled around 35 hours of work. I wasn't working on it non-stop, which is why it took so long. This illustration was created during a really difficult time for me, as I came to terms with my chronic pain and migraines. And even though it was hard to sit and work, it gave me something happy to focus on. It's also the first piece I finished after leaving my job due to poor health. It will forever be a symbol of the changes that were going on in my life and hope for a better future.



Kubo and the Two Strings

Holy moly, this is movie is so, so, so, so underrated. Did I mention that this movie is underrated? Because it is! If you haven't seen it yet, please watch it, okay? You will not be disappointed. This movie follows Kubo and his companions, Monkey and Beetle, who go on a journey to defeat the Moon Sisters and the Moon King. Throughout the film, Kubo uses his magical shamisen to create mystical music that brings life to origami, leading to some absolutely incredible imagery. I hate when people spoil movies for me, so you'll just have to watch it find out what happens.


In real life, I'm actually terrified of monkeys and apes. They just freak me out. So it was quite surprising to me that I wanted to illustrate Monkey. But here she is, and I absolutely love how she turned out! This one took somewhere around 30 hours to make. It might sound crazy, but I absolutely loved blending out each section of fur. I also enjoyed the challenge of copying the logo for the movie.




Coraline

As many of you know, I love creepy, spooky, terrifying things. I don't really know why. I've sort of always been drawn to these types of things. When I was a child, I was obsessed with Scooby-Doo. (I was always disappointed, however, when the villain turned out to be a person, but what can you do...) And, in my adulthood, this has evolved into my love of paranormal podcasts and scary stories. However, I cannot watch scary movies. Being a highly visual person, I find that watching scary movies makes it way too hard to fall asleep, as my mind can easily conjure up images from various sources. When I was a kid, I happened to walk downstairs when my mom was watching The Ring. Even though I only saw two seconds of it, that image still horrifies me to this day.


All that being said, I absolutely love Coraline and have no issues watching this freaky movie. It might be because it's animated rather than super realistically rendered? I don't really know. It still scares me, but at a much lower level compared to other movies. Anyway, I loved working on this picture from Coraline. This scene always felt so magical to me. I love the lighting and the glow of the tunnel as she makes her way to the other world. This picture took around 25 hours, and I can't wait to hang it on my wall!



 

I hope you enjoyed seeing some of my recent work! Yes, some of these were finished a while ago. But they took me an incredibly long time to make, so I'm going to give them the recognition they deserve! Artwork is not like a product that can just be churned out on an assembly line. It takes a lot of brain power and dedication on the part of the artist. And instead of rushing through it and pumping out as much work as I can, I'm taking the slower route and letting myself enjoy the quality and the process rather than quantity and the product.


Also, just a quick disclaimer: these images and their copyrights belong to their respective studios and creators. These illustrations are not for sale. These pieces were made for me and will remain in my collection.


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Thanks for reading and happy creating!