Wednesday, August 10, 2011
Be Somebody or Be Somebody's Fool! -- National Post Travel section
Here's something that got published in last Saturday's National Post Travel section! The illustration is for a humourous travelogue written by Ken Hegan, wherein the author visits exotic locales while incorporating the philosophies of many wise gurus into his personal outlook. In this installment, he visits Boston Bay, Jamaica while absorbing the teachings of the sagest of sages, Mr. T. (Click here to read Ken Hegan's article, "A fool's paradise")
In a series of ancient VHS recordings (painstakingly archived for all eternity on YouTube), Mr. T advises kids in high-waisted, acid-wash jeans to "Be Somebody or Be Somebody's Fool." He instructs them on how to overcome frustration, anger, embarrassment, basically all of life's troubles. Very inspiring! Lots of breakdancing.
In this sketch, I have the author surrounded by some of the obstacles he encountered during his trip. Uncooperative cabbies, a drunk Belgian who wouldn't let him into the dumpy beach hut he booked, a man who shaves Hegan's hair Mr. T-style, and the kids who laughed at him when it was done. The background also includes the cliff-side bar he enjoyed at the resort where he ended up.
For this sketch (and the one below) I wanted to recreate the look of those chintzy figurines that are the mainstay of every souvenir shop. This one is a souvenir version of the composition the art director eventually chose.
Here's the second souvenir concept sketch. In the article, Hegan writes about spending the night at a cabbie's house (after the aforementioned inebriated Belgian refused him entry) where he enjoyed the company of some of Jamaica's local fauna. Do bugs count as fauna?
And here's the one we went with! I included a bunch of stuff mentioned in the article, such as patties, rum, the cliff-side bar, one of the multi-story huts at Hegan's resort, and tropical beverages. I also put in Jamaica's national flower and the hummingbird was meant to represent Jamaica's national bird, only its tail isn't long enough and I ended up eliminating it so the composition wasn't as packed.
This was my second time working for the National Post (see my first job with them here!) and it was tons of fun. I love when an art director has the confidence to assign such different kinds of pieces to me -- It's always nice to show a bit of range!