Tuesday, April 8, 2014

The First Look at The Art of Yuki-Onna

Happy Tuesday everyone! Hope you are all enjoying springtime. I am very happy to see blooming trees and singing birds decorate the neighborhood. I've got the hummingbird feeder up on the balcony and the hummingbirds are visiting frequently. =)

However, if you're missing winter - it just so happens that I've got some winter-themed illustrations to share with you. (Finally!) If you've been following along this blog, you might remember my sneak peek posts about a secretive, collaborative I've been working on. Well now the time has finally come to reveal more about it and to post a full image from my contribution. I present to you the first look at The Art of Yuki Onna.

"Family Stroll" - "And 0-Yuki bore Minokichi ten children, boys and girls, handsome children all of them, and very fair of skin." --- From the Japanese folktale of Yuki Onna.
(The original piece is approximately 8 x 17 inches, completed with micron pens, waterproof coloured inks and gouache on bristol-smooth paper.)

The Art of Yuki Onna is a collaborative, yet independent, artistic exploration of a Japanese folktale about a mysterious snow spirit - Yuki Onna. Various interpretations of the story from each participating artist have been curated into a humble book which will be available for purchase in the months to come.

The image above is one of my contributions to the project, which also ended up being the cover image for the book. It was a really fun illustration to complete because I was able to draw inspiration from a culture that's very different from mine, but which has an artistic aesthetic that is very appealing to me.

Also I got to put patterns on almost all the characters, so it was an instant win because of that, if nothing else.

Here are a few close ups:

And a work-in-progress image. Unfortunately I don't have many process images, as the painting was too big to scan at home, and I had to "outsource" a scanner which wasn't at all close by.
Was still working out the dreaded feet of some of the characters.

Here are some character "warm ups" however - an important part of the "behind the scenes" work, before I started working on the painting. This step helped me to contemplate the personalities of the characters which would then guide narrative of the illustration.

Alright, that's it for today. Secrets are best revealed little by little, after all.
So, come back next week to see photos of The Art of Yuki Onna book and read about each of the artists involved!

*All images in this post are ©Mariya Olshevska.

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