Four years ago I began a series of posters for Bloomsday. Back then, the concept was fairly simple: an illustration depicting Bloomsday runners passing by with the word BLOOMSDAY overlaid on top.
The series began in 2017, and each poster would have a dominant color, and usually ten runners (the 2019 poster featured eleven runners).
Using my own photos as references, I arranged the whole crowd in Photoshop, clipping and sizing individual photos to create a feeling of depth and motion.
For each panel, I took the Photoshop rough as a reference and sketched out the images in Corel Painter. I generally avoided tracing, instead trying to capture the runners traditionally with a quality sketch.
The painting process took about six weeks for each panel, a schedule which allowed for plenty of breaks. I didn't want to rush the paintings.
Over the course of four years, I completed each section of the poster in January of that particular year. Of the forty-one runners depicted, I ended up swapping out four or five for newer images that seemed to work better.
It was truly a big project.
Each art panel was 18" x 30" and the final posters were 19" x 34" each.
This being the final year for the series, I was asked to create one big full-size poster with all four art panels in sequence, thereby "completing" the image.
Of course I was pleased to do this.
The final 4-poster combo is quite impressive at 74" x 37". I was looking at it when Don Kardong (the founder of Bloomsday) came up and commented that it was my "masterpiece".
That was very nice of him to say, and I thanked him. But then my Compliment Negation Fixation kicked in and I added, "It may be my masterpiece, but I'm seeing a lot of mistakes."
He laughed, as did I.
It's true. I can't look at anything I've created without noticing the flaws. Self criticism makes me a better artist. It also makes me a crappy salesperson.
“I’m not worthy! I’m not worthy…!”
Hey, Bill! Not sure what you mean by that, but it’s nice to hear from you nonetheless.
I’ve removed all potential moderation roadblocks (I think). Your comments should appear right away… fingers crossed.