18 September 2017

A Pair of Matching Phone Wallpapers

A few days ago when I was strolling along Facebook, I came across a post of a collection of matching phone wallpapers that couple use on each other smartphone. If you don't get what I mean, it's basically a picture of a couple doing couple thing (holding hand, kissing, hugging, etc.) displayed on two different screens to make a matching picture when being put side by side. It is sweet and so lovely, but my husband and I almost never set our picture as phone wallpaper because either of these two following reasons or both: 1. We are awkward on camera, 2. We feel insecure of what other people will think if they see our phone with our face as the wallpaper. Not that it is a bad thing, it's just that, well, thinking about it makes me kinda feel uncomfortable.

So I came up with an idea of drawing something instead. The illustration above is the image that we use, I set the left side as my phone wallpaper and my husband sets the right side. I like how it turned out great, except the fact that the clock is a little bit distracted on my screen. I had been warned by my husband about this composition mistake ever since I started to draw, but who cares, right? Anything for an artsy result. And oh, it wasn't a mistake, by the way.

However, if you are planning to do similar thing, the rule is simple. First, get the resolution of your phone screen and multiply it by two on the shorter side. And then, draw or design something that you both fancy to put as each other wallpaper but keep in mind that the image will be split so avoid putting anything important on the center. And that's it. This works best if you have the exact same phone or at least the same screen size.

+ Carolynn +

13 September 2017

Rebrand Myself

If you've been following me on Instagram or Tumblr (let's pretend someone has), you will notice that I have a noticeable transformation with my illustration style. I used to draw with outlines and pastel or soft color palette but a couple months ago, I woke up one day and suddenly decided that I need a change.

Drawing with outlines gives me the sense of control and I really enjoyed it, but somehow, I just don't feel like showing the outlines anymore. It's the feeling of control that sometimes makes me feel limited, that I had to be precise in order to make the drawing looks okay or at least not distorted. Outlines are great because it helps achieve a neat picture and I don't have to worry if an object is not showing enough because I can always have the outline to help me define what I want to portray.

My drawing formula was simple: sketch, outline neatly, color inside the line, texture, done. But what if I don't want it simple? And so I said to myself that I don't want to follow this formula anymore. I literally stopped drawing for weeks just to look back at my old works thinking that I don't want to draw like this anymore. And it was scary.

Never once in my life have I ever had the urge to change my drawing so bad. I told my husband one day about what I felt, that there was something wrong with my illustration style that I wanted to change but he just didn't get it. He said I just had a unique style, that there was nothing wrong with my drawing and that the beauty is in the eyes of the beholder, and all of them were right. I just thought I was having a low self-esteem attack. I probably was, but I know something is really wrong.

So, I decided to do some experiments for the past couple months or so. I draw and draw and draw. I studied other illustrations, wondering what makes a drawing nice or not nice, what I want to use and not use. But this time, I don't want to be limited by a certain way or formula. I just draw.

It was tough and I wanted to give up so many times. I find it hard to believe because I was just a week away from publishing my book that I had done with my old illustration style. I should be proud, but yet, I still want a change. I blamed myself for not having enough skill and my brain for keep wanting an instant and pleasing result. I even thought that I needed some art classes to sharpen my artistic side. I want to find a style that I really enjoy and stick to it, but of course, it's not easy.

Jumping to conclusion, I have found a better vision now. I gave up my old style and rebrand my whole portfolio with a set of brand new illustrations style: no outlines, rich of vibrant and bright colors, more crayon-ish. I'm quite happy with this change and I can feel more and more comfortable with it. Let's say, I just passed a phase of growing up and found my new identity. Will I ever have the need to change this identity again in the future? Probably. But I've come to realize that everything doesn't need to be perfect and I accept the fact that things do change after time, including my possession.

+ Carolynn +

31 August 2017

ABC Explore Singapore Book

There's a fabulous new ABC book by awesome author Michelle Lowbeer published this month and I illustrated the whole pages!

ABC Explore Singapore is a beautifully illustrated (ahem) picture book, which takes the reader on an adventure to 26 diverse destinations across Singapore - all the way from A to Z. It is a must-have keepsake for residents and visitors to Singapore, and the perfect gift for those living (or moving) abroad!

Welcome to Singapore — a "little red dot" right near the equator; a small melting pot! From the ArtScience Museum all the way to the Zoo, there is much to explore; let us share it with you!

So this is it! The book that I have been working on for the past three or four months is finally out. I was just too damn excited with all the relief and joy I felt. It feels very surreal that I am publishing a book in Singapore, though I only live here for a year, but it sure feels absolutely amazing.

ABC Explore Singapore is my first published book and is now available to buy online and in shops! In Singapore, you can find my book in bookstores like Times, Kinokuniya, and even Popular all across the island. You can also buy the book online on LOCALBOOKS.SG, Naiise or Select Books. If you want to buy on Amazon or Book Depository, the book will be available in December 2017.

This book is also now available on my Etsy shop and I ship worldwide! I only sell around 25 copies on my Etsy shop and they will be all signed by me. I can't wait for you to read it and I really hope you love the book, as much as I do.

+ Carolynn +

01 July 2017

Animate My Drawing - Hair Blowing in the Wind

If there's one thing that I'm obsessed the most lately is to make my drawings alive and moving!

So this is a simple video showing how I animate my drawing. There's a bunch of methods in making an animation but here I'm using a basic frame by frame method to get my drawing moving. Let's see the result:

This animation consists of:
  • static layer (for the part that is not moving, i.e. everything except the hair and the eyes)
  • 5 layers of hairs (blowing in the wind movement)
  • 3 layers of eyes (open to close movement)

I made the total of 16 pictures using the combination of hair and eyes movement. The tools I use in this tutorial include Photoshop and a free online GIF maker to create the animation. I also use GIF to video converter to get the video format that I can use to upload on Instagram. If you fancy, you can use software like Flash or even Photoshop itself to make the animation, but I personally think using free online GIF maker is easy and fast, especially if the animation is simple, like mine.

It's hard to believe that it's actually pretty easy to make this animation yet the result is very satisfying. I can't wait to make more of my drawings alive!

+ Carolynn +

24 June 2017

Let's Draw Girls from around the World!

When I was a kid, I liked to imagine meeting people from around the world. Everyone looked beautiful with pretty colors in their eyes, hair, and clothes. And so I ended up drawing people after people on my sketchbook.

17 June 2017

Let's Draw Toy Story! (Woody and Buzz Lightyear)

When I was cleaning my room one morning, I saw my husband's small collection of the cute version of Toy Story figures in one corner of a shelf. It was somehow caught my attention to play with it for a while and draw them. So here is a fun video on how I draw Woody and Buzz Lightyear from Toy Story.

10 June 2017

Draw It Yourself! Father's Day Card

Nothing says Happy Father's Day like a handmade gift from the heart. So let's draw something special to our dads this year!

06 June 2017

20 Easy Ways to Draw Leaves

Since I came back from my visit in Singapore Botanic Gardens, I couldn't stop doodling botanical theme and so I decided to make a quick and simple doodle tutorial video on YouTube about 20 easy ways to draw leaves.

04 June 2017

Trip to Singapore Botanic Gardens

I visited Singapore Botanic Gardens this weekend and decided to draw there. It's not perfect but it was fun and I had a great time spending with nature.

18 May 2017

10 Types of People You will Find on the MRT

There are many people riding the Singapore MRT everyday. After almost a year living in Singapore, I meet many different types of people every time I step through the sliding doors. These are 10 types of people that I regularly find while riding the MRT.