Project Icon Illustration Kickoff (GHD032)

Project Icon Illustration Kickoff (GHD032)

"New Illustration Project" I was staring at my website home page again, noticing the placeholder icons I’d made once more. They have always bothered me, but I have been reluctant to actually try making nice ones because I figured the time commitment would be larger and they might come out terrible. I am pretty good with abstract shapes, but not that practiced at all in actual “finished drawing”. That’s why illustration is one of my 2024 goals. So today I am kicking-off a project to make finished icons without knowing exactly what that looks like.

The Current Icons

Currently, the home page section with the placeholder icons look like this:

The Old Icons on the Site These were pencil sketches that were scanned and processed in Photoshop to look sort of like blueprints. They’re used across the site wherever a 2024 goal is used. I’d like the final icons to be much more refined and awesome-looking.

Tackling the Project

One of my artist friends told me 20 years ago that drawing wasn’t about having a preconceived notion of what a finished work would look like. I noticed when he was drawing that he seemed to actually be thinking on the paper, trying things out and exploring the forms on the page. Of course, he also was drawing a long history of having “solved” many drawing challenges in the past so he could draw on that experience, but the essential drawing process was the same. It’s another example, I suppose, of incremental mindful progress being part of the creative process. NO SHORTCUTS TO TAKE HERE.

Reminding myself that I don’t have to do everything at once, for today I am just gathering reference. In this case it is just collecting the old scans and assembled them into a single graphic so I can stare at it. If I had a working color printer I’d hang it on the wall for bonus stares, but I don’t thanks to the craptastic engineering of Team Epson (that’s a whole ‘nother story). Here’s the graphic:

Illustration Sources I’m really not sure what I want to do here to make them cool, but a bonus of having restarted my Tumblr is that I can start following the illustrators who post there. Tumblr is great for finding sources of illustration from the artists themselves, and unlike DeviantArt also has a lot of curators of content who reblog it from somewhere else. This can be kind of annoying since the same content shows up over and over in the dashboard—this appears to be the case for video game communities at least—but repeated exposure to illustration I like is probably going to be helpful.

Stuff Learned and GHDR Points Earned

It doesn’t seem like much action, but just gathering those files to contemplate them tomorrow is a significant bit of work! Having this out of the way actually will help me focus on other work that has to happen today.

10 Makes a future result possible!
2 Reduced scope to get today’s GHDR activity out of the way!
2 Researched how to create a spritesheet from layers in Photoshop, discovered that Photoshop supports Javascript-based actions…intriguing!
2 Posted here on the blog.

That’s 16 points, and it’s only 10AM! Now to stuff myself into the programming box and earn some money.

About this Article Series

For my 2016 Groundhog Day Resolutions, I'm challenging myself to make something goal-related every day from February 2nd through December 12. All the related posts (and more!) are gathered on the Challenge Page.