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Viewing Blog: Christine Garner Illustration, Most Recent at Top
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Christine Garner's blog I write about things illustrations I've been working on, digital art tips and perhaps the occasional nerdy website coding and wordpress plugin review.
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1. Smile sketches

Getting a smile to look right is important. There is a fine line between friendly and psychotic.

Not sure if I achieved that here but these were ‘fun’ to do.

Not sure who the one on the left is but the one on the right is of  actress Ziyi Zhang.

smiling faces

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2. Character Development Alice

I’ve been working on a few projects recently including Alice in Wonderland. I like to explore lots of different options when I’m designing a character. This is just the initial amount of sketches with reference to the original illustrator Sir John Tenniel in the top right. I then chose the designs I like the most and develop them further with more variations in shapes.

I like to get the reference right first and this helps me learn more about the character, but I think having fun and trying crazy variations is also very important to the creative process.

Alice concept stage 1

I’ve also been doing some warm up exercises I learned from the Schoolism course I did last year (Character design with Stephen Silver). There are infinite variations you can create with the circle, square and triangle as a starting point but here are just 3. the top one is the closest to the original reference but obviously stylized somewhat.

Shape exercise Japanese hairstyles


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3. Brushes for Corel Painter 12

I’ve updated my mixed media brush library for Corel Painter 12.

I made some new ones and got rid of ones I didn’t like so much.

mixed media set 2013



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4. Sketchbook Painting

Some portrait studies from various photographs (copyright of respective owners- only used for study purposes).

I love painting real people like this, you can tell they have had interesting lives. It also helps inform characters for my character development when I imagine what sort of people they are.

man with cigar Old Lady Old lady from India

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5. Speed Paint Puppies

I’m not adding new “work” yet but I still want to add things like sketches and development here.

Much like Alice in Wonderland I’ve done most things over the years backwards and in anything but the right order, but never mind all that it’s a new year after all.

Here are some speed paints of one of my favorite animals.

border collie puppy border collie puppie Mary


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6. Portfolio development

I will not be adding new work to the galleries or the blog until March because I am developing new pieces for my portfolio. Thanks for your understanding.

I am still available for freelance commissions and I can also do personal portrait work (animal and human).

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7. The Frog Princess

Frog Princess Character

I thought Disney’s film was very good and it inspired me a little.

This is a type of frog fairy.

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8. Merry Christmas!

I seem to do well with deadlines, did this in a few hours today between decorating the cake and baking gingerbread for my tags to go on presents.

Have a happy Christmas everybody :)

Christmas Elf

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9. End of the World- mabye not yet.

As someone interested in Mayan mythology and culture I did do my research and there is nothing to suggest any apocolyptic event for today at all. :)

My sister has been busy re-buildng her website portfolio today and we are both busy on new projects for our portfolios for next year so I am glad the world is still here.

Please check out my gallery, there is some new work in the Sketchbook and character development sections.

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10. Selkies

Here are some painted characters for my Selkie idea.
Selkie Turn-arounds
Selkie Pose

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11. Character Development Selkie

Here are some sketches for the development of a character I’ve been doing for my mythological/ magical creatures project.
I’m going to do the costume and decide on a few poses to render next.

Selkies Character Development

These are some style tests I did a little while back.
Hair Types and Style Tests

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12. Mushrooms and Gloopy lips

Here are some studies for today.

Ink Cap Mushroom Glowing Mushrooms Gloopy lips

I did the lips yesterday and made a video of the painting progress on youtube.

I’m a bit of a mushroom fan, I’ve got about 6 books on the subject now. I just love the different shapes and colours.

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13. Study of red curly hair

This is a study using the lovely actress Tilda Swinton as a starting reference.

I’m a bit obsessed with red hair I suppose- it’s not very easy to paint with so many shades going on so I like the challenge.

I also saw Pixar’s film “Brave” last night and it was brilliant- lots of red hair too.

Tilda Swinton Study of red hair

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14. More Lips and Eyes

More paintings.

Lips and Eye studies

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15. Eyes and Lips

I’m doing a lot of painting study to improve, gain inspiration and test things out for future illustrations.

Eyes and Lip studies

I had fun with the reflective lips.

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16. Research for Quetzalcoatl (A-Z)

I just finished reading Gods Graves and Scholars last night  (a classic book about all the pioneers of Archaeology).

I dare say it was on my reading list in university but it somehow passed me by which is a shame because its a great read.

If you haven’t read it you must, especially if your into the exploring and adventuring side of archaeology and it explains how it all got going as a science.

I like to research things for my illustrations to try and get details right and to work up inspiration for future drawings. I also wanted to use my archaeology knowledge more in my artwork than I have previously.

Quetzalcoatl Studies

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17. Study

Another painting study.

My nose is red raw and I can’t stop sneezing.


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18. Speed Paintings and a fairy on a mushroom

Did some painting for a change of pace tonight.

I made a nice brush in Painter and wanted to try it out for a bit.

Study Painting Fairy Study

I’m a traditionalist at heart with fairy’s- I think they probably would be naked most of the time, but only because they like to see the startled looks on peoples faces.

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19. Research preview of an A-Z project

Here is a small selection of the preliminary studies I’ve been making for a project I’m working on (top secret at the moment).

Studies for a project A-Z

I’ve been working in water colour a lot more for my paintings rather than just digital. I’m really enjoying the change to be honest.

I think both have their advantages and disadvantages of course- perhaps I’ll write an essay on it if I get bored.



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20. Website Update Hiatus

Please be aware that this website may not be updated for a while with new artwork as I am currently working on new material for my portfolio.

If you need any artwork or illustration I will be happy to discuss your requirements with you.

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21. Illustration Friday (sort of): Tree

I meant to do something faster but I’ve still got the flu sos.

Ratatosk was (or is) the squirrel who runs up and down the World Tree (Yggdrasil) in Norse Mythology.

The World Tree is an Ash tree which is sort of topical right now but nothing to do with this picture.


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22. Red hair and green eyes

Feeling a bit under the weather so I did some more line work today.

Red hair runs in my family and reminds me of my grandmas mother who had long red hair.

Someone sing me a Celtic lament I love those things they always cheer me up.

Red Hair

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23. Mermaid Paint Test

I thought I’d have a go at seeing what the line art looks like with a semi-painted look as well today.

This is a mermaid. Not much back story on this one yet. I do want to illustrate some scenes from the little Mermaid at some point, but time flees.


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24. Book Worms

I saw on TV they want more people to read books so it got me thinking about Book Worms.

I’ve never seen a real Book Worm but I’m sure they must exist.

The Book Worms

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25. Pattern Elf

Leaf and Flower Patterns Elf

More experimenting today.

Repeating patterns are something I would like to explore more. I was looking at Art Deco and Aubrey Beardsley’s work (great stuff) as an inspiration.

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