Friday, January 28, 2011

Book recommendation

During my studies in the UK I have had to write a monstrous thing named a dissertation. It was hell. It was a little fun at times too, but it was more of a struggle than anything else. Not being familiar with the rules and methods for writing in the UK I felt sooo lost. I had no idea what to do at all. My teachers recommended i get a hold of some books to guide me along the road towards a finished thesis.

The first one which I did end up buying was "Writing your dissertation" by Derek Swetnam and Ruth Swetnam.  And boy did it save my life. It uses a simple language and explains the process of writing a dissertation from beginning to end. How to find a subject, create a title, manage time, write an introduction and so on. It is also very inexpensive, 7£ or something like that.

The other book is how to write a thesis. I haven't really read it but it was a recommended read, and should not be ruled out. It is a little pricier, but it won't force you to scrape the bottom of your wallet either.

Hopefully someone can find this useful. If you understand Norwegian I have written more on the subject of writing a dissertation on my Norwegian blog. ( or you can ask me if you have any questions and I'll do my best to answer it for you.

until next time
Anita Night

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Must have for aspiring illustrators!

I thought I would recommend a book. I've recommended it on my Norwegian blog earlier, but since this book is originally written in English it appeals more to the english/american market. I find this book to be a very good aid for a young and aspiring illustrator. Regardless of which niche you work in. Everyone should know how to deal with clients, how to put together a portfolio, what a contract should include, how to bill a client and how to run a creative business on a daily basis. "How to be an illustrator" is a book that can teach you just that.

You don't really learn this stuff at school or the university. I mean you get a modicum of information and then you are sent out into the world of professional illustration. I am not very business savvy, I am not good at maths or book keeping and I am a bit of a klutz. To say the least, sometimes the thought of freelancing terrifies me, but books like this one really helps me avoid having that near fatal anxiety attack that lurks in the dark corners of my mind.

The book is full of interviews with professional illustrators and artdirectors from the UK and America. You get to know what illustrators think of the business and how they approach the business of illustration. The art directors talk about what they look for in an illustrator and how they discover new talent.

The book showcases a lot of illustrations made by the interviewed artists so the book is not boring to flip through. The text is easy to read and the book is simple to navigate through and you don't need to read it from beginning to end, you can just jump to the bits that interest you the most.

I would recommend this book to any aspiring artist as it is a great book and is written by Darrel Rees, Head of Heart Artist Agency, one of the largest UK artist agents.

Hope someone will find this useful

Until next time
Anita Night

Monday, January 24, 2011

WoW Guild Banner

Like I have stated previously I am a bit of a geek. Where a bit is kind of an understatement to be completely honest. It should then come as no surprise that I have done a bit of World of Warcraft fan art. My fiancée has created a WOW guild named Quest, and he wanted a banner for the guild forum and gave med the dubious task of creating it. So off I went into a project that proved to be very time consuming...

The first image I did was of a Blood Elf Paladin looking ever so dashing in his Tier 10 armor set.
I'm telling you this baby was a nightmare to get through I never fully realized how detailed the armor in WOW is before I did this illustration.

Next up was this Troll Priest sporting a Tier 8 armor set. This one had a good amount of detail on it, but not nearly as much as the paladin armor (thank goodness for that). I really like Trolls and had a lot of fun working on this one. I love the hair on her.

And finally..tadaaaa... The guild banner. I combined the two warcraft characters and painted a dark and lava infested background background. I thought it would be fitting since Cataclysm was recently released.

My fiancée was very pleased with the result of my little project and has now posted the banner on his forum. Don't know if the rest of the guild approves, but heres hoping.

Until next time
Anita Night

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Anansi Boys Book cover

So yeah, what the title says really :p

It's a book cover for Anansi Boys by Neil Gaiman for my university book cover project. This is one of five planned book cover illustrations. The other four will be published as soon as they are finished.

I am a big fan of Neil Gaiman, so I figured I would do an illustration for one of his books. I had not read Anansi Boys before so I decided to read it and illustrate it. (Loved the book btw). I looked at a lot of the previous covers for the book and to be honest I thought they were kind of boring (no offense to the artists, just a personal opinion). I basically just decided to make an illlustration that eould make me want to read the book if I wasn't already a Gaiman fan, and the result can be seen below.

Fig 1: This is the original artwork. Pencil and Photoshop basically.

Fig 2: This is how the cover spread ended up looking like. I might have to change the text on the back, but we'll see. I just used the text you find on the back of Clipper Publishings large print edition. The books content is well described in that text and I'm not really too good at writing summaries.

Thats all for now


Anita Night