Why I totally changed my art style - PART 1

a_matter_of_work_and_fulfilment_blog_article

Hello everyone ! I hope you're all going fine since the last post. Here the weather is beautiful, a little bit too hot for me though. I am quite happy to live in an appartement I can keep rather fresh during hot days, Bandit (my cat) is also grateful for that. He is no longer the hot carpet he used to be in my previous appartement were the temperature managed to reach 37°C by day... I am so happy to see him enjoying his summer days. Though he is asleep right now... 

 

Anyway ! Today's post is going to be quite talkative and a little bit negative, containing me sharing my mistakes etc..

I am going to write 2 other publications to talk about my experience as a professional illustrator this past 3 years and mostly, the different reasons that pushed me to make this big change in my "art life". 

Ok. Before anything, let me set the scene. I studied illustration in a school during 4 years. I've always loved to tell and hear stories and also drawing so... I really fulfilled myself through studies. 

 

Just after graduation, I've been contacted by a very popular children's books publishing house. And that's how I started to work in this domain for almost 3 years with a very different drawing style from the one you see now.

 

 

I can show you for exemple a cover that I've made back in 2015 for a novel. Quite a difference huh ?

 

conspiration_anubis_illustration_novel_alain_surget_cover

I was so thrilled to be able to do what I loved the most that I worked my ass off on every project. No counting my hours, and trying to do the best job I could.

 

I realized how much this work is consuming regarding energy and creativity. Every end of project was really stressful and hard but I loved it.

Then I had a project where I worked even more, like a deadline, but from the beginning until the end. The amount of work was... insane ! I finished the project exhausted but happy with the result. But mostly relieved that this was over, to be honest.

 

This project was written in 3 books and I just had finished the first one. Two more to come. Less than a month after the end of the book, my publisher sent me the illustration's pitch for the second one. I started to work on it. 

Couple of weeks passed and I was not satisfied at all with the work I had produced. The deadline was pretty tight comparing to the amount of illustrations I had to make. Maybe I put myself too much pressure, I don't know but I was certainly losing my mind and my health trying to work on this book.

 

At this point I was feeling like I had no other option but to cancel the project, for my own good. This is something I am terribly ashamed of, guys. Because I let down people who were counting on me for a job and yeah... I feel very bad about this.

But one thing I've learned is that communication is very important. If you ever found yourself in this situation, please talk about it with your publisher. I didn't and I think it made everything even worse and I really regret it.

 

It was a pretty bad experience for me.  

Beside this, I had a lot of fun with many projects I've made. But I have to admit, as the time passed by, I was asking myself if I really wanted to continue as an illustrator in this domain.

 

I love children's book, I really do, and I have a lot on my shelves. But when I go to the library, very few of them really catch my attention. In the end, I realize that many of the stories we tell kids are very boring and empty of any sense. 

And that is not something I want to contribute to. Working for this industry sometimes makes me feel like I am just going to produce one more book among the others. It will not be good, nor bad either... 

I kinda feel like it's just here to grow the production of an editor but there is no real reason for it to exist. Does that make sense ?

That sounds very pessimist and I may be totally wrong, but that's the way I felt at this moment.

All those little things added to each others contributed to this drastic change of life I chose to make.

Next publication will be about "art style".

 

Thank you so much for reading, I hope this is not too boring for you to read. Feel free to share your experiences too, I would love to read it !

Talk to you tomorrow !

 

 


Write a comment

Comments: 4
  • #1

    Tarrlok (Friday, 20 July 2018 20:27)

    Hello, I recently discovered your work on twitter and I'm lookin forward to the next parts of these. I'm really curious to read how your style changed (both your older work shown here as well as your current work are gorgeous)
    Just out of curiosity where did you study?

  • #2

    Maud (Friday, 20 July 2018 20:47)

    Hey Tarrlok ! Thank you for your feedback, I greatly appreciate ! I wasn't sure it will be interesting to read, so I am comforted.
    I've studied at Emile Cohl, it's an art school based in Lyon (France).

  • #3

    Kaylee Pineceone (Saturday, 21 July 2018 16:52)

    I'm going through a similar experience right now with having a change in art style. It can be very stressful, justifying it to people, so being able to read about another artist's experience is great! Thank you for sharing your story!

  • #4

    Maud (Saturday, 21 July 2018 20:28)

    Hi Kaylee ! Yes it isn't the most pleasant time as an artist but it worth it. I am super happy if sharing my experience can help in any way. Wish you the best !