The Process of My Illustration Work: Wall Street Journal Illustration Sketches

As a vector illustrator, its a common misconception that I simply go to the computer and whip up some art. Actually I get my best ideas from sketching and doodling which is faster than trying to draw on the computer. Also for my editorial illustration clients I provide 3 or 4 hand drawn sketches in order for the art director to get an idea of the content and composition of the art so they know what to expect in the final.

For example, I was hired to create an editorial illustration for last weeks Wall Street Journal, Ask Teri column depicting a man and woman on a computer monitor to demonstrate how one might dress during a video conference at the office.  Below I’ve posted the sketches I presented to show some of the different ways I approached the art.

Sketch 1—This was an idea the art director and I had discussed, two monitors to show both people with the "viewer" in silhouette.
Sketch 2—This one was my own idea to show the male wearing the suit and the female in the dress on the screen so there are only two figures in the art instead of three.
Sketch 3—Finally this one was the winner. It's a bit of a hybrid of the first two. Once it was chosen I was also given direction to tone down the smiling and waving to help it appear more professional, which you can see reflected in the final art.