Category: idea development

IP Development Mentorship Week 4

DISCLAIMER: I don’t mind you guys sharing my thoughts about the mentorship with others. However, if you don’t see the art or writing bits up at, that means I’d prefer you keep it between us!  Enjoy!:)

IP Development Mentorship Week 4 Wrap Up

My mentorship went on a brief hiatus for a week where I caught up on a ton of sleep, played Witcher 3, and took a much needed load off.  The 4th week resumed this past week and we were right back to the revision game!  I finished up my book 1 synopsis and defined the skeleton of my book trailer/pitch.

I ended up tapping my writer friend so hard for edits that I hired her professionally for all of the late nights of brainstorming and revisions we had been doing together.  This was the best move I made to really bring the polish to my story that I needed.  The mentorship teachers only have so much time in and outside of class to critique our art AND writing.  Once my mentorship ends, I hope to continue the working relationship with my new content editor into the future and I’m so excited to see how my story will improve because of it!

The Importance of Revision

It seems all I’ve been saying this entire time has been REVISION, REVISION, REVISION!  But it really is so important to the narrative process, not only for writing, but for art as well.  There are times I’ve stared too long at the same painting or too long at my synopsis during this mentorship that I just couldn’t see what was wrong anymore.  Getting a second set of eyes on my work has improved my work so much faster in a shorter time than banging my head against the wall trying to solve the problems myself.  I really can’t recommend a good critique group for art and a good content editor for writing enough!

Grand Total of Revisions Thus Far

Synopsis – 8 revision
Pitch – 2 revisions (with more to come)

MOAR Pitching! 

When it comes to pitching, I’ve had another chance this past week to pitch my story to a story director over at Riot Games.  Talk about nerve-wracking!  I got some great feedback, however, and I get to update my pitch now with even more pointed feedback that I wouldn’t have gotten if I had continued pitching to people who already know my story really well.  It’s more proof that getting an outside opinion is so very important when you’re working on a narrative product!

This Week’s Art

I’m still working on trying to get the thumbnails for my illustrations sorted out.  They keep changing as my pitch evolves and I take some away and add others. I’m excited to be working with a set of images for a single narrative!  It’s not something I get to do often.

Read about the rest of my journey with the IP Development Mentorship here:

Week 1
Week 2
Week 3
Week 4
Week 5
Week 6
Week 7
Week 8
Final Week
Final Critique

Sketch Diary – Lady of December Part 1

It’s that time of year again! Time for my yearly Christmas card for fans, friends, and family! I have a bad habit of starting this project late every year, which barely gives anyone time to pick up some cards to send out to their loved ones, but THIS year, I am making it a point to be early! It took some effort to even begin thinking of Christmas themes while my beloved harvest and Halloween season was going on. I am one of those types who hates seeing Christmas ornaments out before I’m done enjoying my pumpkin pie and colorful leaves.

 This year I am admittedly rebooting an old theme you might remember, the Angels of the Months. You all might remember the Advent Angel, who incorporated themes of December’s flowers, as well as Angel of January, who had flowers and birthstone symbolism. Each one had its strengths, but I always felt as if they missed the mark, compositionally. Either the wings blocked the stained glass or the winged figure competed visually with the stained glass window for the attention of the viewer with too much ’empty’ space left around both. I was flipping through my favorite Mucha reference book when inspiration struck me like lightening!

Mucha’s Semi-Precious Gemstones series.

I adore the simple focus, the elegant ladies, and the detail in the windows and flowers! Lady of December will be in a similar composition with a focus on her adornments, the flowers of the months, and the representational birthstones.  I do miss the wings, but (as loathe as I am to say this), sometimes I have to make pictures without them! For shame.

With all that in mind, thumbnailing begins!  These were rough and dirty ink sketches to help establish the composition’s flow, the figure’s posing, the arrangement of the borders, window pane, and flowers.  I knew I wanted the central theme to be a ring of Turquoise, inspired by the Gregorian poems for the birthstones, so the poses had to bring the hand into play as a point of interest.
1 and 3 are my favorites.
 Next up, I wasn’t too sure of the pose yet, so I decided to explore them in a photoshoot with a chair and some curtain sheets.  I took quite a few variations, but here are some of my favorites:
Just ignore my horrid farmer’s tan…

So many to choose from! But the pose on the left had a really interesting flow created by the hands and the focus I wanted on the ring.  Meanwhile, the other photos will be filed away for reference use for the rest of this series!  Some of these may make their way to my stock art gallery, so keep an eye out over there, if they strike your fancy!

Then came the reference hunt!  Have a montage of pretty jewelry, Mucha dresses, and other things which I hope will inspire the final look of Lady December’s dress and jewelry.
Coming next: Studies and Line Art
Want to see a step-by-step as this project develops?
Check out the thread at WiPNation!