Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Creating an Elegant Alice

I showed you all my Alice sketch a few weeks ago, when I was first inspired by my lovely new sugar bowl, but now she is finished and I thought I'd share her with you.

She is a little different than my other snobs. Firstly, she isn't blended quite like my other snobs. In fact, with the exception of her first layer of skin color, which you can see me blending in the top photo, she is barely blended at all. This means that there is a lot more of the texture of the paper behind her, and the look is a bit scratchier than my usual work.

I love the look, however, so I'm quite pleased with my new snob.

The second major difference is the background. I decided to go with a dark, collage look using brown paints and vintage text. Not quite like my light backgrounds with pen and ink elements, but perfect for Miss Alice and her Wonderland.

Here are my tools of the trade. My Design Spectracolor pencils (no Prismacolors this time. I just don't like those pencils!!), which are always compulsively sharpened; My Pink Pearl eraser, which I am never without; And a blending stump (for when I use solvents), which I used on her face and dress.

I'm never too keen on the under layers of a picture. I use a lot of pink and magenta, which you can see on her eyelid and eyelashes.
After the magenta layer, I usually add in some violet, and then finish the eyelids and lashes with blue violet. I don't like to use much black in a picture, and generally get my shading done with violets and blue violets.
Prismacolor makes a colorless blender pencil, which I love and adore and have a million of. I use them when I need to blend in small areas, such as this thin, black ribbon. For larger areas, I use my solvents to blend, but after last weeks ER visit, it probably isn't surprising that I didn't use them much this time.

I wanted to go with the dark painted background on vintage text, so I pulled out my ratty old book, which was too mangled to read, and pulled out a few pages. Then, using Mod Podge, I glued the text to a piece of 11 x 14 Bristol board.

Then I had to pause and take a picture of Annelie laying on the floor next to me, drinking mango juice and laughing like a maniac in her diaper.

And look, she finally let me trim her bangs. That wasn't an easy feat, I assure you. Of course, when I was done, she looked up at me and said, "More?"

Tenniel's original Alice illustrations are public domain, so I thought it might be a fun touch to add some of them to the background of my illustration.

And then I began to paint. There is no method to my madness. I just tend to grab the first thing in sight. Which, in this case, happened to be the most sophisticated of artist tools: A foil palette and a diaper wipe).

Voila, Alice is done.

Well, mostly done. I finished her and then noticed that I accidentally cut off the bottom left section of her skirt. So now I have to make a new one.

Here are some close ups.

Her snobby face...

A close up of the Tenniel illustration in the background, although now that I see it up close, I think I'd like to blend it in a little more. I don't like that bit of white behind it.

And of course, I had to add a cupcake. Mmmm... I love cupcakes.

Enjoy!

xoxo,

17 comments:

sweetpicklespottery said...

oh my goodness!! Its gorgeous!! I have to one!! Love it Marisa!!

Giggleberry said...

Wow Marissa - Alice is just stunning... I had no idea about the process behind your masterpieces!!

RetroRugrats said...

She's beautiful!

Valerie said...

I love her! Great job ♥

Lorissa J. Longfellow said...

She is wonderful. Great!!

Crochet by Momma J said...

She is beautiful and I am facinated by your process!

Whimsical Creations said...

That turned out wonderful!
=) melanie

Nikki said...

Marissa, you are brilliant! I adore your snobs. This one is no exception and I really like the dark background. I love that you let us in on the process, I had no idea it was so involved.

Beautiful!

Denise Felton said...

So gorgeous. And thank you for letting us look over your shoulder. I'm just amazed!

::::Lula Boutique:::: said...

Thanks so much for sharing this entire process! Very cool! I loved the finished piece. Beautiful!

Rosebud Collection said...

Beautiful, beautiful..you did a wonderful job..I love my pictures, I can tell you that...Great work..

Oh Mandie! said...

oooh I love her! The collaged backround turned out wonderful!

Juan said...

Great work Marissa. Nicely executed!

Regal Beads said...

LOVE this! :)

Yolanda said...

cute kid!

casserole said...

Oh, I love to see how your mind works!

Little Snails and Ponytails said...

Adorable! I'm loving your art. Your work should be hanging in every little girls room. Keep the creations coming!
Happy Day...
Kristen

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