Posts Tagged ‘inspiration’


Illustration Progress


I love looking at all kinds of art. Whether I’m in a museum or on a portfolio website or peek into someone’s sketchbook – looking at the art of others is the greatest source of inspiration and drives me to become a better artist myself. But what I love most is to actually see how a piece of art develops, from the first lines to basic colour shapes, all the way to the finished piece with whatever motif it may present.

Some artists are kind enough to let you participate in their creative process, via screencapture-videos or step-by-step images.

One of my favourite youtube channels featuring the process of artwork is TORVENIUS, who is a digital artist, well known for his surreal speed paintings. Definitely check out his channel, because his approach and technique are fascinating!


Copyright by Jana Schirmer


If you like the whimsical art of Manga and Comics, check out Sakimichan’s Weblog. There you can find many of her famous paintings in a WIP-status!

ConceptCookie is not only a great website for art tutorials, but they also have a DeviantArt gallery, with very specific progress-shots, like of a stylized eye or a shiny gem. If you like material- and light studies, their gallery is for you.

Janaschi (Jana Schirmer) is certainly one of the most famous German artists, or rather, artists in general, of our time. Her recent portrait-series, where she paints the faces of colleagues and friends, has found many admirers, but what’s especially interesting is to see her individual approach in the progress-images she shared. Check them out in her DevianArt gallery.

Another great and interesting artist is lora-zombie, who already has a big fan community. She frequently shares photos of her atelier, for she is mostly an analogue painter. She also has shot some artsy videos of her painting progress, which you can find on her DeviantArt portfolio.

Last, but not least, I’d like to mention one of my favourite heros when it some to WIP pictures, algenpfleger. He even has a folder in his DeviantArt gallery specifically dedicated to tutorials and step-by-steps. Have a look at it here!

With a very recent illustration of mine I wanted to do something similiar and also show my painting steps. I ended up creating an animated gif of the various states of progress:


Step-by-step animation of “Fantasy Forest”.
Copyright by Marion Kapferer / CipSoft













And here is the final illustration on DeviantArt!

Are you guys as intrigued by WIP-art as I am? I’d love to see some of your step-by-step work, so please send it to me!




It’s not always easy.

We all know that feeling: Everything you do seems to be exceptionally hard. You animate a sequence again and again, you do that rendering over and over and can’t get to make it look right. You stay up until 3 a.m., trying to make the perspective in that drawing look acceptable and go to bed frustrated and exhausted. That’s also the time when everything slows down: minutes turn into hours and after what seems like a fifteen hour day, you just didn’t get ANYTHING done. It’s the time when you check your email every few minutes, when you go through all those art galleries and designer blogs and tutorial websites that you bookmarked, seeking for inspiration. Which, of course, frustrates you even more, because all you accomplish is losing time and getting even less work done.
Those phases come, and all creatives know them.

I wanted to share with you a special letter.
I found this blogpost by Austin Madison, an animator working at Pixar, where he shows a hand-written document (and how rare is that, anyway!) that he did for “The Animator Letters Project“. (Please check it out, it’s fantastic.)

He writes about exactly this problem, that I wanted to do a post about for weeks now. He puts so eloquently in two pages what would probably take me fivethousand words to say, so I just want to share that with you.

Whether you are in one of those phases or not, please read it and remember it when you need to be reminded that it’s all worth it. : )