US Catholic magazine handed me this full page illustration, to accompany a memoir set in Arizona or New Mexico, regarding family members serving in the war. It was a nice change of pace from all the scratchboard I’d been doing lately, and I enjoyed playing around with a slightly less ‘hard edged’ look.
In September, we sent out the second mailing of the year, a promotional postcard (4×6) that recycled a recent illustration that I had done that I thought showed a lighter and whimsical side of my scratchboard work.
The Chronicle of Higher Education handed me a series of illustration assignments in September for a special supplement concerning university libraries. These illustrations would accompany various articles covering different aspects of the ‘library’ topic, ranging from censorship issues, to automation to tenured positions.
I was certainly given a ‘concept’ workout during this assignment. Some articles were easier to come up with ideas than others, and in some cases, I got a little help from the editors, with ideas that they wanted to see.
Since the subject matter was a little dry and static (and drawing shelf after shelf of books got to be a little tedious after a while), I tried to spice things up by making the backgrounds as colorful and vibrant as possible. Around this time I was doing a lot of experimenting with different textured backgrounds, and overlapping different colors. After a while, I got a little more subdued and consistent with this technique, but you can see with this project that I’m all over the map with it. Sometimes using it to extreme lengths and in other illustrations hardly using it at all.
One of the illustrations was sent back for revisions after I had completed the set. The above illustration was felt to not adequately represent both genders (they like to keep a good balance of race and gender throughout the magazine), and so asked me to add another female figure on top of the flying laptop. Not a problem, so now I have two versions for my own archives.
And finally, I don’t quite remember if the illustration below was part of the same ‘grouping’ of illustrations, or if it was another assignment at a different time of the month. But it was for the same client, and I’m afraid I don’t remember what the topic for this one was, or if the letters on the blocks had any significance.
Had a number of assignments from various newspaper clients of mine during the month of September. The caricature of George Bush to the right was something to do with either his crumbling support in the Republican party, or to do with his crumbling legacy. Anyhow, something’s crumbling. Not one of my best W likenesses, but I had a lot of fun with the pillar at the bottom. This one was for Newsday.
For the Wall Street Journal, I had the above ‘stock ticker’ illustration. I don’t remember why it is full of water, but I like the simple image. Judging from the size and the fact that it is in black and white leads me to believe this was one of those Sunday ‘chart accompaniment’ illustrations.
The illustration above was for Barrons, a publication affiliated with the WSJ that I’d just started working for the previous month. I don’t remember if this was one of my concepts or if this was supplied by the editors.
Another piece for the same client is below, this one I am pretty sure was an idea provided by the client. A little awkward, but I did the best I could to pull it off.
Also during this month, for Newsday, I had a series of small ‘financial’ cartoon spots for a lifestyle article. These concerned a variety of topics, money for schools, inheritances, severance packages, social security, etc. All tied together with that old cliche standby, the bag of money with a dollar sign on it.
I hadn’t done a ‘cartoon’ piece in quite a while, and it was fun to go back and revisit this style which had at one time been a much bigger part of my regular business.
If I had to pick a favorite out of these five spots, it would have to be the ‘inheritance’ piece. Most of the rest of them were rather straightforward and dry, and I was pleasantly surprised that this rather macabre concept got by the editors. From a purely design and color standpoint, though, I think the ‘college girl’ was the most pleasing visually (following a close second, the ‘retiree’ with his glowing gold retirement watch).
I also had a few small ‘health care’ spots for the Wall Street Journal. These are usually about ‘dubious health care claims’, and I try to provide three concepts for each topic, some more goofy than others. Both of the ones chosen this month were fairly cut and dry and conservative. The one above about ‘elderly eyesight problems’, and the one below, was actually about a special brand of shoe.