Always a joy working on these illustrations for SooJin. This one had so much potential from the start. Exploration of directions included lots of ideas that I thought would work. SooJin likes the flat earth, No.11. I was drawn to the safe harbor, No. 10, or the unknown dangers awaiting in No.9. But 11 maybe shows navagating through troubled waters, and went with the original title/concept; Finding A Way- Danger everywhere Lacking a safe harbor, if you work/look hard enough, you'll find a way.
When I started on this little painting I wanted to give it a decorative border. The border was really time consuming, Took a long time and certainly gobs of coffee to stay focused and get through it. When I got to the Sea Monsters I was painting them in bright colors and sort of screwed them up. Just wasn't working, so I painted over them black and added detail back into them. I would have started over, but that border...ugh! didn't want to do that again.
So I keep working at it hoping to salvage the painting. I almost scrapped this one several times and just completely start on another painting. I finally get it where I am liking it and scan it in and start tweaking in Photoshop. I give the ship a kind of a mystical glow like St. Elmo's Fire to draw more attention to it and a subtle compass rose to reinforce the nautical theme. I think it turned out pretty well. Seemed a bit dark at first but when I saw it in the magazine, I liked the darkness. Big thanks to SooJin. Always a pleasure working with her.