© Diana Ting Delosh
Ink & Watercolor
Non-mainstream holidays are a big seller at my online store Diana's Cards. Most likely because the brick and mortar stores have very little selection if any for the non Judeo Christian holidays. So it was a no-brainer for me to do a new illustration for the upcoming Muslim holidays. Here's my approach for the subject. As the upcoming holidays are religious I decided to do a mosque as the focus of my design.
What better mosque to be inspired by then the famous Golden Mosque of Jerusalem. Did a Google search and did this rough sketch from the image references on tracing paper. I wanted to use the reference as a jumping point, an inspiration not a true depiction of that famed building - so no print outs for reference.
This reference sketch was actually done awhile ago and just put aside until I had time to work on this project. Finally yesterday, with Ramadan coming up fast in August - it was time to push this illo out now. Amazing how time creeps up on you and how that ticking mental clock can be a great motivator.
The art process begins in earnest:
Step 1 - Resize sketch and transfer onto watercolor paper via my light box. Decide that it's not balanced. Too heavy on the right, needs something more on the left. I add buildings to the sketch, erase it. Sketch in more trees - it's ok -but not inspired. Remember that there is actually a newly built mosque right around the corner from me. It is a rather plain structure accept for the rounded pink scallops on the top of the building. Fills in the empty spot nicely.
Step 2 - Go to ink - I use double 0 and triple 0 rapidiograph pens filled with waterproof ink for my line work. Use the 00 pen for the foreground and 000 for backgound and detail, texture. This goes smoothly and I scan the line art in case I screw up in the next step.
Step 3 - Coloring.The painting is pretty straight forward. Take a step back and realize that the pink in the back building is too bright and makes it pop out too much. Change it to purple. Also decide it's too plain and add more lines for texture. Last a moody night sky is added in and stars are painted in white gouache. I like that the white can be more opaque or translucent, gives more depth to the stars and the the night sky. I could've dropped in the sky with Photoshop but I like the effect of mixing the black, blue and purple directly on the paper. Art is finished.
Final Final Step - Scan and clean up in photoshop and make into product. I did say this was for my card store - yup it's loaded and submitted as 3 designs for 3 different categories and in about a week it will be ok'd and available for purchase. Maybe this design's too late for Ramadan 2010 but there's still Al Fitr in September and Al Adha in early winter. While we're at it - might as well make it available as a print. So better late then never.