Llama unicorn illustration

Greetings!

I have been trying my hand at using humor in my illustration work. I like to think that I can be quite funny, but telling jokes is not one of my strengths. I often mix up the details of a joke by telling the punchline too soon, or by laughing at the joke before I have finished telling it. I am better at giving witty remarks and comebacks than telling structured jokes. I always marvel at standup comedians who are able to recall hours of jokes and retell them in what seems like an effortless fashion.

My latest illustration work is a funny and misleading drawing of a llama with a horn. The wording beneath is acerbic, and doesn’t match with the fun and bright picture it is paired with. I think it works well for that specific reason.

White llama with unicorn horn funny caption everyone you know hates you
Llama with funny wording why stephanie konu

I think that this would make a great book cover. I would love to write somthing funny that would fit with this title. Perhaps I should begin working on my joke telling abilities.

Thanks for stopping by, and remember to check out my free ebooks. The links are at the top toolbar of this page.

-S

Illustrating comics with 3 panels

3 panel repeat illustration black woman
3 panel repeat illustration

One of the things I like the most about illustration is that it allows me to express ideas in a diverse way. I have more freedom to explore ideas that normally would have been difficult to attempt with paint and canvas. Furthermore, with illustration I can use technology to copy and paste multiple sketches, change their size, and manipulate the scenery much easier than before.

The above illustration is an example where I have used technology to manipulate a previous sketch of myself into a 3 panel repeat illustration. I have copied and repasted the image into 3 panels. I added an abstract motif inspired by green cactus to make the image more decorative. I like the way it turned out, and it has a fun “summer” vibe to it.

Asian man covers eye illustration by Stephanie Konu
Asian man covers eye illustration by Stephanie Konu

This illustration has the same idea as the previous one, except the decorative bamboo leaves are in the background of the illustration. Using technology, I merged the repeated subject at the shoulders to create continuity along the bottom edge. Thinking back, I would have been more creative if I had the subject covering his ears and mouth in the repeated images to make a “hear no evil, see no evil, speak no evil” reference. It is an amazing feeling to play around with different ideas and to see the end result. I am looking forward to working on more comic type illustrations that include words and meaningful quotes.

Thanks for stopping by.

S

Afrocentric Fairy illustration

Sometimes I think to myself:

“Stephanie, your artistic practice is bipolar.”

I tell people that my artistic practice started in 2012 with sewing, but I suspect it started long before that. I have always made things.

I remember making potions out of my parents toiletries, and handing in books I made for school projects.

I think my early years lacked focus. I needed outlets but had no connection to anything tangible.

My illustration work evolved from a desire to deepen my ability to communicate through visual arts. Painting on canvas is amazing, but expensive. I started teaching myself how to draw basic lines and shapes, and eventually discovered the wonderful world of digital drawing with a stylus on my Samsung Note. I suppose everything after that discovery is history.

Afrocentric black muse fairy floating in illustration over artists head
Stephanie and her afrocentric muses

My latest illustration is one that I simply adore. It is an illustration of the artist (me) with shading and highlights. The line work is black and thin. Two African fairy creatures float above my head to sprinkle ideas and inspiration into the surrounding air. The sprinkles appear as stars in my orbit.

The colour scheme was painfully decided so that they would blend well and create an attractive image holistically. Tans and pale yellow against a deep background that appears bluish green. Lovely.

Thanks for stopping by,

S

Long weekend Monday

Greetings!

Welcome to a new week, and happy Simcoe day to everyone in Ontario Canada.

I hope you have had an opportunity to check out the ebook featured in the last post. The book is titled “Mad About Mandalas”. It features 16 blank mandala designs for printing and colouring. I feel that adult colouring is an activity that is beneficial to practicing mindfulness. Taking a few minutes to slow down and concentrate on breathing while coloring will add years to your life!

In the meantime, I am working on my latest idea for a colouring book. The subject will be portraits of people I have met. I can’t tell you anymore since we are still developing it, but I hope to have it posted on the anieksteph blog by autumn.

Here is an illustration I did earlier this week. The sketch outline was done with felt tip brush in Autodesk sketchbook. The colour is white against a black background.

Once I sketched the outline of the figure, I added a red sky on a separate layer over top of the sketch, then a yellow halo outline closer to the boundaries of the outline. After the outline looked on point to what I was aiming for, I turned down the opacity to make the image have a glowing effect.

This is my favorite sketch of the week!

Thanks for stopping by,

-S

Mandala time!

I love to create, and right now I love to create illustrations. I use autodesk sketchbook to draw with a stylus and I find so much enjoyment in the activity.

I created a mini colouring book for adults called “Mad About Mandalas” that features blank mandala designs that can be printed and coloured in. I think that colouring for adults can be a great way to practice mindfulness and meditation. I will upload the book soon, but for now, here is a free mandala designs that you can print out and have fun with.

Mandala blank for adult colouring
Mandala blank for adult colouring

If you want something more than a geometric design, here are two blank portrait sketches I completed last week for clients.

Bobby newberry sketch
Bobby newberry sketch
Dominican Joey sketch for adult colouring
Dominican Joey sketch for adult colouring

Feel free to print the designs and colour them for a mindful break and to bring relaxation to your day.

Thanks for stopping by,

S

Portrait illustrations

My latest illustrations have improved from earlier work.

Colour illustration cartoon man holding chin simple vector
Simple colour cartoon illustration

This quick sketch came out like a simple logo. The line work is incomplete, and I had some problems with the source image. I found it difficult to see the small details, and as a result, details like the nose and line work for the ears are missing. There is a bit of shading, but the work is generally plain.

Pixie hair brunette illustration of a woman with sunglasses
Pixie hair brunette illustration of a woman with sunglasses

This illustration is similar in its simplicity, but is more finished that the previous one. The source image was a woman with a cute pixie hairstyle. I really like how her hair turned out, as I was not sure, at the beginning, that I would have been able to capture the style properly.

As I develop my illustration style, I prefer to draw sunglasses as reflective glasses. I like to use artistic licence for sunglasses because it gives a “grand theft auto” vibe that looks really cool, as opposed to copying the source image exactly.

Highlights illustration of Arabic woman from Instagram
Highlights illustration of Arabic woman from Instagram

This next illustration is shows a turning point in the general complexity of my work. I have added some basic highlights to the portrait to convey a light source from the top of the subject’s head. The highlights are a slight improvement because they make the image look less like a flat 2D cartoon.

Stephanie Konu illustration black woma blowing kiss cartoon
Stephanie Konu illustration black woma blowing kiss cartoon

Here we see a technique that is farther along than the others. The source image is a photo of myself. Some details are missing, but the important change is the use of highlights and shading to capture facial features that cannot be expressed with black outlines (aka line work). Notice how the bridge of the nose is shown with a shaded line that is slightly darker than the skin tone.

It is fascinating how much shading and highlights add depth to an otherwise flat 2D image. I find so much enjoyment in this activity! Using Autodesk for illustration allows me to be creative without the messiness of painting in acrylic (although I still love painting).

Thank you for stopping by to see what I have been working on. I am looking forward to showing you what comes out next!

S