1. Tell us about the time when you were starting out. How was that like? Did you have a specific plan for your career?
I was working as a graphic designer in 2006. I was fortunate enough to work in a small company with a very good boss. He employed me as a designer but he knew I liked to draw and gave me a chance to learn more about it at work place. Even if I had something to design he was always giving me free time to experiment with drawing anything no matter if that was related to the current project or not.
At that point I was sort of searching for myself in a wrong way, and also experimenting with drugs. My drawings looked like this:
I keep this artwork that dates to the beginning of my career as a reminder and a storyteller of my artistic and personal development. I also use it to see how much I've grown as an artist. It is still available in my portfolio at Behance. What you'll see in this folder is not something we can call illustrations that you could sell for big money. So, the first piece of advice would be: if you want to become a successful illustrator, don't try to draw like this.
2. What was the thing or who was the person that helped your career the most? In what way?
Well… I think there were a few people and things combined together that made me successful.
- Office competition. There was a guy in the office I worked in who, too, had a passion for drawing. He showed me the basic principles which I am still using. He ignited my passion for drawing with his passion and commitment. He inspired me to learn more. Every morning we would come to work showing each other illustrations or sketches which we had done at home the previous night before going to bed. This started resembling a silent competition between the two of us. Whenever he'd show me something I thought was great, it made me immediately want to do something cool to show off as a response. That’s how it started.
- Favorite illustrator. He also introduced me to my favorite illustrator Oksana Grivina. I fell in love with her style right away and I wanted to learn how to do it. I started to research and collect all her work looking through each and every pixel, trying to replicate it. My own style started shaping up while I was copying her.
- Living example of success. Another great guy and one of my best friends Andrey Gordeev worked full-time in the office on the opposite side of our hometown Khabarovsk. He used his nights to draw amazing illustrations for Moscow magazines. Gradually he started to get amazing overseas orders. By the time he had done few advertising illustrations for American Colgate, his skills and earnings motivated me to continue learning illustration. Working at the office and going to work every day was a routine for me. I didn’t want to do it for the rest of my life. Andrey was my role model of a successful freelance illustrator.
- Personal qualities. Another amazing thing that happened to me was getting introduced to yoga. I was searching for myself in drugs but when I first came to a yoga class, I felt it gave me so much more than drugs even could. I felt it gave me back a peaceful state of mind: my head cleared up from all the thoughts that were bothering me, I felt I always had high energy level and I felt good. It gave me the strength to do something. It made me focus on one thing easily. So I started to do yoga daily and it helped me overcome my addictions and bad habits. I also noticed my bad attitude to other people was transformed, I changed the way I was interacting with family members and it positively impacted all the other aspects of life.
It may sound unreal but it's actually logical. You are the center of everything in your life. What you think and feel, the way you perceive reality... it all influences the way you see the world and how you react to it. If you are at peace with yourself, you will be in harmony with the outside as well. Your attention and how to what you choose to dedicate it can transform your life.
3. We could say you’re a famous artist now. Could you tell us about your struggles to get here? What were the challenges? What were the hardships?
- I am helpless in drawing. When I was starting, this was my first thought every time I was unable to sell illustrations or make the sketch just the way I imagined it. It is absolutely fine to make mistakes. What you should do is not waste your energy on emotions. It's better to shift your focus and use the same energy to see what you don’t like and how can you improve it.
- Thinking about the work 24/7. There were lots of projects almost every day. Years of work. Whenever I would walk outside to get a break, I was thinking I have to work. During the lunch time, I was thinking that I am wasting my time, I should work now instead. When I was freelancing under the shadows of a palm trees - I was thinking the same thing again. Whenever and whatever I had been doing I was thinking about work. This was really stressful and it took me 6 years to make life-work balance. Yoga helped in my case.
- Waiting for an invitation. I never ever offered my illustration services to anybody because it I don't think it works that way. When you are the one that's offering, it means you asking someone to do you a favor. It’s like begging. When your customer comes to you - you have the upper hand. You are in the winning position and you can dictate your own terms and requirements. You can raise the price higher. Because they want you personally to draw it. It’s challenging to behave this way: simply letting go and doing your best creating beautiful things, uploading them to all the social media platforms and just waiting. Once I’ve realized that I took the lead in the situation.
- Thinking impossible. It was hard to believe that some deadlines are possible to achieve. It was even harder to imagine putting a higher price on my illustrations. But as long as you start thinking about impossible as achievable, you will not get it. Like getting an order for say Coca-Cola or Pepsi. Success is just out of your comfort zone and the line of your sight.
4. Was it worth it? What would you have done differently?
For sure it was worth it! The only thing I would have done differently would be not taking up a couple of orders that I knew from the start would be a lost cause. I am talking about the ones where the customer didn’t know what they wanted nor why they wrote to me.
5. If you could give an advice to aspiring artists trying to make it, what would that be?
- Copy-Paste. Don’t be afraid to copy others works while starting out. It doesn’t mean you should put them in your portfolio saying they're yours but do it just as a study. Try to adopt others ideas, color palettes, compositions or way of working and you will see fast improvements. People made lots of research regarding the same thing before you and they've already made lots of mistakes so you don’t have to start from scratch.
- Fake it until you make it. If you want more people to see your work, don’t write comments like “Please, go through my portfolio, I’ve just posted a new project…” You'll attract more attention to your projects if you apply logos of big and famous companies. I'm not saying you should lie. You should add a tiny caption explaining how that is a made-up project and you're just dreaming about working with big clients. This really makes sense. People usually DO NOT READ. They will look and think you're already working with those brands. This worked in my case on Behance as I really started to work with famous companies.
- Practice every day. Draw every single day. Draw everywhere. Draw everything you see and like. And just relax. Enjoy the journey.
What do you think about Fil's story? Can you identify with it? Does it make sense? Do you have a story you'd like to share for COLOURLOVERS blog?
Tell us about it! We're dying to hear.
This guest post was written by Elizabeth Phillips. She is a former web designer who is currently freelance writing. She enjoys reading and writing articles that have anything and everything to do with design. She can be found typing away on her laptop in Philadelphia, PA.
Web design is constantly changing as technology grows. Developments like fiber optics have dramatically improved Internet speeds - and faster speeds have opened up the possibility for high-tech innovations like parallax and 3D animation.
No matter how tech-savvy web design gets, some things never change. Even the most advanced designs still need to wow with the basics - colors, fonts and images. Here are a few tools that will help you balance high-tech with aesthetic and keep your design inspiration fresh.
Have a photograph you want to turn into a color palette - or just need to browse for some creative inspiration? Color Hunter can help you do both. Upload images to create custom color palettes, or search existing palettes by shade and theme. Save the ones you like to your Favorites.
There are tons of font databases that allow you to search for fonts and even find the closest match to an unknown style. But FontStruct allows you to create your own fonts - for free. Use geometrically shaped “bricks” to build your own font in a grid interface. Once you’re done, share your font in the gallery, where you can also see and download others’ creations.
Adobe Kuler is a free web tool that allows you to create your own palettes using a vibrant color wheel. Choose up to five shades on the wheel, and adjust hues on a slider. You can also explore existing color themes, including the most popular and most used. Even cooler? You can use the Adobe Kuler app and your iPhone camera to extract color palettes from your surroundings on the go.
If you have designer’s block and need to check out some finished products to get inspired, try StyleVault. The site showcases web designs from a variety of sources. You can search mobile, commercial, animated and CSS designs. You can also follow the portfolios of individual designers.
SwatchSpot is another great site for color inspiration. It has an incredibly simple interface - all you do is hit “Shuffle Colors” to come up with random palettes of six hues. You can lock in the shades you like and shuffle again until you find the perfect combination. Save your favorite palettes, download them to your computer or grab the color codes.
Like StyleVault, Web Creme features hundreds of pages of web design ideas. The only difference? Web Creme’s examples are organized by upload date, and there’s no real way to search through them. To make the most of this site, you have to be willing to sift through tons of examples to find your inspiration.
LogoPond is the mecca for designers looking for logo ideas. The site contains thousands of logos for a wide variety of brands and themes. You can browse featured, popular and recent logos. Filter results by designer, status and date of upload. LogoPond also features a forum for design discussion, questions and critiques.
Shutterstock is every designer’s best friend, with more than 30 million stock photos, illustrations and videos. But the site got even better in early 2013 when it released Shutterstock Spectrum. The tool allows designers to search stock imagery by color. Just choose your shade on a gradient scale, and refine by theme - like “forest” or “home.”
Designspiration is my favorite site to visit when I need a little creative stimulation. The site houses thousands of images, searchable by tags, categories and colors. Browse images of art, books, fashion, illustration, typography and more. Choose up to 5 colors and find images that incorporate them all. Save your favorites into collections.
TinEye Labs Multicolr Search
TinEye Labs Multicolr Search extracts color from more than 10 million Creative Commons images on Flickr, allowing you to search images by shade. Select up to 5 colors, and then adjust the hues using a color wheel. Easily change the color composition of your search by clicking and dragging.
What are your favorite online tools for design inspiration?
Elizabeth welcomes your feedback at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Lately everything Grunge seems to be trending. Everywhere I search online I find Grunge Photoshop Brushes or Grunge Textures. Check out the best of Grunge Art from the Internet:
Create Gorgeous Grunge Art with Creative Market, Pick Up These Awesome Items and Get Creative ASAP:
*Featured Image Source
There are so many interesting things you can do with text. Here is a collection of tutorials to create amazing text effects in programs like Photoshop. Once you have mastered these colorful and creative text effects, use them to create beautiful typographical art pieces.
Tutorial #1: Earth Design - Grass Text
Tutorial #2: Embossed Text with Metallic Glow
Tutorial #3: Spray Paint Text
Products You Will Need to Complete This Project:
Tutorial #4: Grunge Floral Text Effect
Products You Need to Complete This Project:
Make sure to share or link to the colorful creations you make using these tutorials, can't wait to see what you come up with.
I know what you're probably wondering...turn of what century? Well these particular designs come from a magazine published in 1901 and 1902 called Shin-bijutsukai.
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This magazine was a monthly publication featuring "various designs by the famous artists of to-day," and as you can see, the pages are filled with wonderful colors and trippy patterns. I don't know about you, but after looking at all of the nature elements in these designs, I feel like going for a jaunt in the park.
As we ease into the holiday weekend, it's starting to feel more festive than ever. Around this time, some people like to drive around and look at Christmas decorations. Internet nerds like myself like to browse around and see what awesome things people are creating online.
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When it comes to holiday patterns, there's lots of goodies to be found. Patterns are especially fun because you can use them as wallpapers or backgrounds or, heck, even as your own gift wrap. Some of these are just great inspiration, others are great foundations for your own designs, and all are sure to put you in the holiday spirit.
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The kitchen is one of the most active and important rooms within your house—one that gets quite a bit of attention when it comes to home makeovers. You’re in and out of the kitchen constantly. Between preparing meals each day or just grabbing a quick snack, it seems like you end up in the kitchen more than any other room. With this much foot traffic, it needs to be a room that looks decent and represents your home properly.
Lighting can play a big role in helping this come to fruition. Lighting also plays a big role in how your color scheme will set the mood for the room. Kitchens are meant to be inviting rooms—they entice the appetite and help you to relax and unwind from your day.
Let’s illustrate how light can play a role in making kitchens stand out.
Print design speaks to us. Posters, flyers, invitations, business cards -- they're tangible, nostalgic, and because we can actual touch the designs, extremely personal. So much creativity and ingenuity can be packed into an 11x17" poster, or a 2x3.5" business card, it's no wonder I can get lost for hours and hours looking at amazing designs.
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For your viewing pleasure, here is a selection of great print inspiration from around the web.
I have to say, when I've thought of Utah in the past, color was not a word that I would have associated with the hot, arid, and rocky terrain pictured in my mind's eye. That is until my introduction to the landscape photography of Jeremy Davies. Jeremy is one of the many fantastic photographers that work with us here at myPhotopipe, and his work brings depth and visual artistry to a landscape just as vibrant as his approach and technique. Jeremy has a way of interpreting what he sees and feels in the world around him into a tangible manifestation the rest of us can admire from a distance that's oftentimes otherworldly, yet connect with personally.
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Introducing you to the array of chroma Utah's eclectic landscapes has to offer seems like a natural progression in this budding love affair of colorful photography we're sharing. Allowing yourself to get lost in the escapism Jeremy's sensible, yet discerning eye offers will open you up to a plethora of possible color combinations when examining the color palettes of his photography.
Source: Jeremy Davies
A sunset photo of the Great Salt Lake. The posts pictured were once used as support for Saltar Resort, back in the late 1800's.
This guest post is written by Annie Josey. Annie is a blogger for Pegasus Lighting, a specialty lighting retailer committed to helping everyone have a positive learning experience in lighting. Annie is also a fellow color enthusiast, and has made it her goal to use lighting to brighten up the lives (and living spaces) of everyone she meets.
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Color-loving homeowners can have some of the most attractive abodes around. Their houses have vibrant front doors and their yards gush with lively flowerbeds. Perhaps they have colorful bird feeders hung from porches or trees, or bold mosaic tiles around swimming pools and along walkways. They outfit their decks with bright chairs and whimsical umbrellas to shade them from the sun, but what happens when the sun goes down, and all that lovely color falls into shadow?
If you’re one of these homeowners, losing out on all your favorite shades the minute the sun sinks down might seem tragic. But, with the right outdoor lights, you can keep your favorite colors looking vibrant AND compliment your décor with even more color.
Here are 4 ways to add to and enhance your yard’s hues with light: