Children of the Black Skirt

Children of the Black Skirt posterPoster design for the Ink Pot Arts production of Angela Betzien’s Children of the Black Skirt:

A group of lost children stumble across an abandoned orphanage in the Australian bush. They become trapped in a timeless world, haunted by spirits from the past. These stories, told by award-winning playwright Angela Betzien and performed by Ink Pot Arts’ youth acting ensemble, take us on a journey through the darker side of our Australian history.

The play has a very mature theme and storyline, and a darkly gothic tone, which I’ve captured within my colour and typography choices. ‘Black Skirt’ was hand lettered and features both points and loops to represent the youthful characters and their situation, and the main supporting font used is Aeterna – a great small caps typeface in old style figures that nicely balances my custom hand lettering and supports the gothic feel.

A group of lost children stumble across an abandoned orphanage in the Australian bush. They become trapped in a timeless world, haunted by spirits from the past. These stories, told by award-winning playwright Angela Betzien and performed by Ink Pot Arts’ youth acting ensemble, take us on a journey through the darker side of our Australian history. – See more at: http://whatsoninadelaide.net.au/event/children-black-skirt-written-angela-betzien-performed-ink-pot-arts-youth-ensemble/2014-08-01/#sthash.gYu4eGik.dpuf
A group of lost children stumble across an abandoned orphanage in the Australian bush. They become trapped in a timeless world, haunted by spirits from the past. These stories, told by award-winning playwright Angela Betzien and performed by Ink Pot Arts’ youth acting ensemble, take us on a journey through the darker side of our Australian history. – See more at: http://whatsoninadelaide.net.au/event/children-black-skirt-written-angela-betzien-performed-ink-pot-arts-youth-ensemble/2014-08-01/#sthash.3Nyl268M.dpuf

Tales of Quahnarren: Black Hunter

Tales of QuahnarrenBlack Hunter

I’ve been working on several different pieces for my continuing Tales of Quahnarren project, and have finally finished, after much delay, one of the earliest illustrations I had planned: ‘Black Hunter.’

This was always a tricky image to compose and produce, particularly because I desired to show a night scene with a dark horse and rider. Exactly how to go about achieving this, whilst still making the image readable, was something I had to experiment with a little. This illustration evolved quite a bit as I progressed and it took some time for the final design of the rider’s mask and armour to emerge – the mask shape was heavily influenced by a very interesting gnarled piece of wood that I noticed at a nearby winery. It can help to be observant of nature!

I used a few custom brushes in Photoshop to produce the effects I was looking for – notably the various cloud shapes in the background and the detailed, textured finish for the horse. I’m happy that the final artwork has the darkness and mood that I was searching for, and yet still has enough contrast and light to be an effective illustration. It is also nice to see it completed…