Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Illustration Friday: Contained

As I was contemplating the topic on my early morning walk, I watched the moon set and thought of a song from my childhood about Meekins and Morkins. (by Sandy and Caroline Paton) These two guys saw the moon set and thought they could catch it, they try and fail all week and in the end,

"Said Meekins to Morkins 'I'm beginin' to feel
we can't catch the moon 'cause the moon isn't real.'
'It's a myth!' they both shouted, let's head for home soon,
which they did by the light of the mythical moon.

So that brought me to the idea of something that can only be contained in imagery.

I had some conversations with my Dad to get the artists for this song--since the words came from that nebulous childhood memory bank. And in the process he asked me a very interesting question. He was reading Douglas Adams The Salmon of Doubt and mentioned the idea that the song Do-Re-Mi from Sound of Music was completed with a placeholder. (that "la a note to follow so" was a phrase that was meant to be changed but never was.) Then my Dad asked if I'd ever done something like that visually. Put in a squiggle or shape that stood in for something undecided in the finished piece and then neglect to finish it. I'm not sure, but it really got me thinking. So I've included my sketch here--just to show some process. I would say that the placeholder phenomenon was more likely to occur in my traditional work than my digital as the sketch gets hidden in my digital process. But do any of you use placeholders? Have any of them inadvertently made it into your finished work?


Alan Scott said...

Oh the dangers of placeholders.
I was designing a calendar for national distribution and the organisation needed a finished visual for some publicity, but I had no text for the images as yet. The promotional piece was to be published as a thumbnail. So I made up some relevant but cheeky text to fill the space and amuse my colleagues - it'll be so small no one will be able to read it.
It was indeed a tiny image but with a sharp eye the miniscule text could still be read - admittedly with effort - much to hilarious enjoyment of friends at my discomfort, luckily the placeholder text was not stupid enough to get me into real trouble.
Be warned all designers out there.

theartofpuro said...

Wonderful image full of sweetness and magic

Love it

Michelle Henninger said...

What a beautiful illustration. I can't say that I've ever put in a placeholder that I've forgotten. But I love Alan's story. I'd love to see a sample. heh heh!

Vanessa Brantley Newton said...

I just love it Heather when you show your sketches an the finishes. It's such a treat. I had to come out from under the covers and take a look at your piece. It's simply wonderful. Lots of wonderful detail in there and I love the color. Yes my dear it is just freezing here in Jersey. I need sunshine and warm rays. Thanks for sending me some. Thanks.

Bella Sinclair said...

I'd never heard that song before, but it's absolutely charming! What a beautiful illustration. Captures the spirit perfectly. And the watercolor textures are marvelous!

steve said...

I do recall placeholders but don't have one myself. As for childhood memories, many of them we hold dear and incorporate them into our daily life, or sometimes reach back into the ol' "archives".

I really like this, and the story that goes along with it . It has a very romantic mood to it. How i wish i could take my late afternoon/evening walks again, but it's supposed to be twelve degrees max tonight, so I've got the going and I'm hiding under a blanket.

Heather said...

For those of you who liked Alan's story above--click on his name and check out his website. Very funny!

enigma said...

beautiful and mysterious view, i say. the image says the story itself. nice work!