Sunday, January 25, 2015

Friends with Books - Boy and Girl Clipart

Well, there's something good about getting to stay at home a couple of extra days because of a blizzard - more time to draw clipart!
I spent a lot of the time (when I wasn't out shoveling) finishing my latest series of "Friends."  I had this idea of figures in various poses with books and found some fun reference images of kids standing on books, sitting on stacks of books, standing next to a stack of books, and even one of a kid with a book on his head.  These led to me sketching out the characters holding and reading books as well as some fun ones like what I saw in the reference images.  

Here are the final Friends with Books:

And here is the cover for the black and white set:

I'm proud of how these figures came out -now it's on to the next set!



Monday, January 19, 2015

Friends - new set of boy and girl clipart

I finally finished my latest set of clipart.  Thanks to Amy (at Learning Lessons With Mrs. Labrasciano) who gave me the idea of creating more realistic looking characters, I started drawing a couple of body forms a few weeks ago and got some great feedback from Amy which set me on the path for this first set.  My main goal was to make figures that could pass for either elementary school, middle school or high school teaching resources.  I've seen lots of clipart that is only for the youngest grades, and a few sets for older kids, but I thought I'd make these figures bridge across the grades.

Friends was a fun set to make.  Using references, I was able to create these figures in varying poses and played around with different hand and arm configurations.  And while I was working on them I decided they could have different personalities - and I gave them all names!  Then I toyed with different shirt styles.  I just happened to be watching the Patriots while I was working on one of the figures and thought it would be fun to make one of the characters wearing a Tom Brady jersey.  Here I am finishing Chase:

And here's Chase's final figure for the set:
Amy had also suggested one of the characters making a heart shape with her hands over her head - so this is Leah:
I wanted to have a couple of figures that could pass for being a little older, and so I created Max and Maya.  I thought it would be fun if Max was a little goofy while Maya was a little more sophisticated.  Here they are:

I made Emma and Liam as the younger Friends characters:

I thought Zoey and Noah each have some personality:

And I had fun with Ryan and Claire:

And finally there is Jacob and Olivia:

Here's the cover of the set, with all of the figures together:

And here's the direct link to the Teachers Pay Teachers product: Friends - Boy and Girl Clipart.

I also saved the blackline versions as separate files which are all part of the same set.  Here are the blackline figures all together:

Overall, I'm very pleased how they came out and I've already mapped out my next product.  So, it's time to get back to drawing ...



Friday, January 16, 2015

Custom Banner for Julie

While I'm working on my next product, Julie asked my advice on a custom banner for her store.  I looked at what she wanted to do and thought I could make what she wanted.

So, she sent me the pieces along with a quick PowerPoint slide of how she wanted it to look.  Here are the pieces she sent me:

                                   Scrapbook piece called "Winter Love"
                                          Banners from her website

                               Girl Writing on Lap clipart

                                    Julie's Winter Close Reading cover

                                  and her "A First For Everything" logo

I looked at how she wanted to assemble the pieces together and it turned out to not be too difficult to come up with the final banner.  Here it is:

Now it is on her TpT store, which is located here.

I'm proud of how it came out and was glad to help!



Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Valentine's Day is coming!

Now that the new year is here, it's time to start getting ready for the next holiday.  Actually, I think I saw the first chocolate hearts and other Valentine goodies in the stores the day after Christmas!

Since I decided my next product was going to be Valentines clipart, I wanted to be sure I was done in plenty of time so that if someone wanted to use some of the clipart in any of the things they may be preparing for February 14th (or the 13th this year since V-Day is on a Saturday), they would all be done.

I tried to have some fun with many of the shapes - I hope you like them!



Sunday, January 4, 2015

Another First - Next Product Uploaded and Ready for Sale

After completing the Geometric Shapes and getting my TpT store started, I immediately started drawing my next set of shapes.  There were some other geometric shapes that didn't make it into the first set (partially because I was a bit impatient to get my first product finished), but I also had some ideas for some other miscellaneous shapes that I thought might otherwise not be included in any other sets I might be doing.  I wanted this set to also be fun, so I've included playing card shapes and other stuff that I just thought someone might find useful to include in a product.

As with the first set, all images are 300 dpi PNG files, black freehand lines on a transparent background filled with white.  Since the linework is done with a brush tool, there are partially transparent "gray" edges along both sides of the black freehand line.  I had initially experimented with the pencil tool, where there wouldn't be any of these gray lines, but, even at 300 dpi, the drawings ended up looking pixelated.  Although I like the look of freehand lines, without the gray edges the linework looked too much like a computer-generated image.

The only problem with the partially-transparent lines is that when I use the paint bucket to fill the inside of a shape with white, it still leaves the gray, limes as partially transparent - not what I want for the final images.  So, after searching through internet forums, particularly ones dealing with Photoshop (although I am using Gimp), I finally found the answer.  After completing the black lines with a brush on the background layer, I fill the inside with white.  Then, I create a new layer and draw a white line with the pencil tool over the gray, partially transparent pixels on the inside or filled side of the black line.  (You don't want to go outside and cover any of the partially transparent gray pixels on the non-filled side of the black line as these are the pixels that keep your linework from looking pixelated.). Then I make my background layer the current layer, slide the layer to the top in the layer window, then use the "Merge Down" layer command.  This process puts the gray lines over a white background so there is no longer any partial transparency.  It took some trial and error to get this process down, but it works for what I am now doing.

The drawback comes when you want to add any color other than white.  Although I'm not doing any colored images yet, I tried testing some color just to see what happens and those partially-transparent lines on the side of the black outline I want filled are going to be a pain.  I'm going to wait to figure this one out when the time comes where I want to do clipart with color.

So far I'm proud of the drawings I've done to date.  If you managed to get this far, you've read through some pretty boring stuff (unless you're into the details of how raster image software like Photoshop or Gimp works).  When I started this endeavor, I never knew how technical making clipart would be. But now that I have a system that works, it's time to get drawing again.



Thursday, January 1, 2015


Just created a Bloglovin link - see the button in the left column to follow KPclipart through Bloglovin!