Exercise: Client visuals

For this exercise we had to choose two illustrations, scale them up and edit them to create a clear visual of its main structural form. The first illustration I chose is by Elise Gravel from her book ‘The Mushroom Fan Club’. I chose this illustration because it contains a range of content and is composed of bold shapes. I wanted something that wasn’t too detailed for my first attempt at scaling up.

This original measured 16.4cm by 22.9cm so when scaled by two and a half the visual needed to be 41 x 57.2cm. I didn’t have any ‘art’ paper larger than A3 so I used lining paper to produce my visuals instead. Although the illustration initially seemed that it would be quite simple to reproduce in a larger size, there were actually a lot of lines and angles that I needed to get just right. I did need to measure content in the original and multiply by 2.5 to ensure accuracy. Even so, I still didn’t have quite enough room at the bottom of this first version to fit the cat in properly. I found the house the hardest to reproduce and the girl easiest.

Now I had my scaled up visual, I now needed to edit out as much of the content as possible while still making sense as an illustration. It was while doing this second version that I realised that the reason I ran out of room at the bottom of the first was because I had mis scaled the large bush in front of the house. The learning point here - to check and recheck the maths! The original image didn’t use many extra lines than were needed to make the image readable so there didn’t seem to be much to edit out. The lines I left out were all lines for detail, I kept all content.

The second illustration I chose for this exercise was more detailed. I had practised large bold shapes so I wanted to have a go at something more finely illustrated. It is from The Big Book of the Blue by Yuval Zommer. I also didn’t want to have to create anything quite so large and at the back of the book, there are thumbnail images of the larger images in the main part of the book. These measured at 8.3 x 6.1cm. I scaled up three times to work at the size of 24.9 x 18.3.

I found that I didn’t need to measure content to scale up like I did with the first illustration. I was much more able to use my judgement on sizing and positioning. There is a lot of detail in the image and in my first visual I included what I thought was needed to make it descriptive. In the second, I removed all detail leaving just the basic outlines.

This exercise has given given me the insight into edits that may be needed when presenting a client with visuals. I have also learnt lessons in the technical aspect of scaling an image.

Art direction

I think the textual information about sea turtles would have driven the art direction in this book. The client would have wanted the razor sharp edged jaws of a turtle shown in the visual because that will be described in the text. Likewise, the eggs on the beach need to be shown because that is also in the text. When looking at the image again with the text and thinking from this reverse point of view, I can see the edits a client would make. It has also made me realise that I had actually edited out these two important bits of information in this second visual. I this is because I was working from a thumbnail without considering the text. Once I took the text into account, I could see what needed to be included in the visual. Below shows an my third visual that includes this information and the original illustration with text.