Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Pine Magazine - Spring 2011

This is the cover to the Spring 2011 issue of Pine, the alumni magazine for Northern Arizona University. I was asked to a modern version of the iconic (and much-parodied) Norman Rockwell painting Thanksgiving, but instead using some professors and students from the university involved in a specific school program.

I can say with little doubt that this was probably the single most complex illustration I've ever had to create--I had to use the same basic set-up as Rockwell, but had to illustrate six specific people, two generic "seat fillers", plus all the accoutrements--table, drinking glasses, plates, books, silverware, diplomas, laptops, chairs, wall, floor, curtains, wallpaper, and window. I created each piece separately and then put it all together like a big puzzle, moving each piece around so every element could be seen properly.

To make things even more fun, the company that produces Pine didn't have much in the way of reference photos of everyone in the poses you see above. So I had to use the faces from the photos they did have and graft them onto other bodies that fit in the various poses vaguely approximating the ones in Thanksgiving. Not easy, I must admit.

Luckily, I had a decent amount of time to work on this and get it right, and in the end I was really proud of the piece. It was run on the inside as well, with less typography on top of it:

I also created some spot illustrations featuring some of table elements separated out that were used through the text of the article:

While I'll admit this assignment was more of a technical challenge than a creative one, I am nevertheless very proud of the final result. I take great pride in being a professional commercial artist; more a craftsman than an artiste, per say, and being able to produce something this complex and specific on time was a huge undertaking. I'm thrilled it all came together and to finally see it in use!

1 comment:

Caffeinated Joe (Wings) said...

I like it, Rob. Definitely a challenge well met. Congrats!