Editorial illustration is artwork created in response to written text, usually an article in a magazine, newspaper, or blog. In this course, we will focus on how to analyze a text, develop a unique idea, and communicate that concept visually as a partner to the article. Editorial illustration is an exciting field because it allows the illustrator to inject their own opinions and unique voice into the work. We'll focus on how to inject your own personality into your expressive illustration while still communicating your concept and illuminating the written word.
Transform Words into Illustrations
Course Concepts and Overview
To show you all this, I'm going to take you through my step by step process of creating an editorial illustration. You'll see my process from the original text article to researching, sketching, drawing, revisions, digital production, all the way to final illustration. I'll also show you many of my own personal Photoshop techniques for creating illustrations with bold colors and tantalizing textures. In addition, I will walk you through some illustration fundamentals that are often misunderstood including line, tone, value, and color, to help make your drawing as strong as possible.
By the end of this course, you will have the skills to transform a boring text-only article into a professional editorial illustration that communicates your unique voice while illuminating the written word.
This video introduces the topic of editorial illustration and defines what it is, and venues where it can be found.
This video explores the history of editorial illustration from Europe in the 19th century up to present times.
This video explores the types, subjects, and size specifications of editorial illustration.
This PDF is a list of 25 of my favorite current illustrators that are trail blazers in the editorial world, with examples of their work to inspire you.
This video explains the steps of creating an editorial illustration, with a list of standard process steps, as well as my personal set of process steps.
This video explores how you can find your illustration style, and more importantly how to not worry about it so much!
This video explains how I found my own artistic style, and how the specific visual aspects of my style correlate to myself, in the hopes of getting you to ask yourself the right questions and keep experimenting with style.
This video will take you through the process of analyzing a written article and brainstorming.
An example design brief, and the design brief I use to create my illustration for this class.
An example written article, and the article I use to create my illustration for this class.
This video explains how to collect visual references, and what to avoid when looking at references.
This video explains how to overcome the dreaded blank page, and let your ideas flow.
This video explains how to start sketching by relaxing and not judging what comes out of your pencil.
This video goes through many of my favorite drawing tips and techniques to inject vitality and personality into your drawing.
This PDF lists a few of my favorite drawing resources.
This video explains what to send to an art director in a real-world editorial illustration assignment once you have completed your sketches.
This PDF shows examples of sketches sent to an art director, and my final three sketches for the illustration I created for this class.
Feedback can be hard to hear! This video explores how to take criticism and feedback respectfully and incorporate suggestions into your revisions.
This video explains how to finalize your drawing and composition on paper before you dive into Photoshop.
This video explores options in linework and the theory of "lost and found" lines.
This video explains what values are and how successfully working with values will help make your color palette easier to create and stronger in the end.
This PDF includes some of my favorite digital brush recommendations.
This video explores the huge world of color from color relativity; primaries, secondaries, and tertiaries; tints, tones, and shades; brightness; harmony; contrast; personal color style; and how to improve a bland color palette.
This video offers a quick tip on how to achieve harmony in your digital color palette.
This video shows you my process of exploring color and creating a color study on the illustration I created for this class.
This video explores some of my Photoshop digital painting techniques, and takes you through a speed-lapse of my entire digital coloring process of the illustration I created for this class.
This PDF includes a recommended reference on color.
This video explains how to paint textures on paper to be applied to your illustration digitally in Photoshop.
This video explains how to apply your painted textures in Photoshop.
Christine Fleming is a freelance illustrator and designer working out of Atlanta, Georgia. She graduated from North Carolina State University with a BFA in Graphic Design, and is now illustrating in both the science and children's markets, as well as writing and illustrating her own picture books, and designing materials for various companies.
Christine's work has appeared in magazines, literary zines, science blogs, educational workbooks, and custom commissions. She was also named the SCBWI Illustrator of the Month after attending the SCBWI National Conference in New York.