Recently I was hired by Launch, an ad agency in the Dallas area, to create some artwork for a new packaging project. They were developing a new logo and packaging for “Bags On Board”, line of pet waste disposal products. They came to me with some concepts already fleshed out and hired me to do the final packaging illustration across the top. I wound up doing I think six different variations on this illustration, one for each product that was being showcased.
(Copyright © 2009 by Cedric Hohnstadt. All rights reserved.)
Earlier this summer I was hired by PreFurred Pet Care, a small business on the west coast, to help out with an ad campaign. They had seen an old piece from my portfolio depicting a cartoon flea and tick having a picnic on top of a dog’s head. They were wondering, could I sell them the image for use in a postcard campaign? After looking through my files I discovered I had already sold all the rights to that particular image, but I did offer to create a custom illustration just for them and their specific needs.
The client liked that idea and decided to do their own twist on the picnic idea. They would use a stock photo of a sleeping dog, and above his head they wanted to place a cartoon “dream” balloon containing some parasites getting ready to eat him. I liked the idea and did the above illustration. Here’s how it looked inside the balloon:
Recently I was hired by a publisher of Christian music curriuclum (Praise Hmyn Inc.) to do a spot illustration for a children’s song, “The Tick and the Flea”. My instructions were to depict a tick and a flea having a picnic on top of a Shitzu’s head.
Here’s the final illustration, sketched, inked, and colored in Photoshop. The client asked that we clearly see the dog’s face, so I couldn’t zoom in too closely. It was a real head-scratcher (pun intended). The only solution was to make the bugs about 1,000 times their actual size. Even then they were small, so I kept the designs very simple (i.e. four legs instead of six or eight) in order to read clearly.
Fleas and ticks are brown. I wanted them to stand out more so I used cartoony colors, which also gave me freedom not to be too literal with the designs.
The fur was fun to color. I used a hard Photoshop brush set at either 10% o 30% opacity (depending on the color) and then just built up my strokes. It’s always best to just suggest hair with a few strokes of highlight and shadow. If you try to paint ever individual hair you’ll go mad.
This is my favorite kind of illustration project: Simple, colorful, and lots of fun to draw!