Computer Arts: Tell us about this project ...
Philip Dunne: Change 2013 is a self-initiated piece created, back in January, to celebrate the new year. I think everyone has gotten a little jaded over the last four, five years. So I felt the year 2013 will be a big year for change in my life and in a lot of people's lives – and in the entire world. I wanted to capture the energy of the new year, like a butterfly emerging with shiny, new, strong wings. I wanted to develop my own style of illustration, too, merging my strong traditional background with newer digital techniques.
CA: How did you put the piece together?
PD: My creative process begins in a moleskine diary and ends on the internet. I start with a rough thumbnail. I sketch out strong, fluid lines with an F pencil and then draw the illustration out with marker pen. Then, I scan it into Photoshop CS6 and digitally colour it. However, for my recent illustrations, I've been using the iPad with Adobe Ideas app and a Wacom Stylus. I draw a few elements and build up vibrant colours in Adobe Ideas and then bring them into Photoshop CS6. Another piece I created, called This Is My City, was produced for the new agency I've joined called &Reach. The illustration is about my escapades in Dublin, capturing the quirky architecture around the city with my smartphone. My illustrations take around two-three days to complete. The main challenge was blending the vibrant colours with my linework and finding a strong balance between neutral and vibrant colours.
CA: How did you get into design?
PD: Back in 2006, I won a public design competition for Sony Playstation and after that I began to send my art around to loads of magazines and websites. I've worked on a variety of briefs, from t-shirts to outdoor advertisements to photography-based illustrations. I've also been very active in keeping personal projects going. I like to photograph male models and illustrate the images, but it's an expensive side hobby. I'm also constantly challenging myself and embracing new technology.
CA: How would you describe your style, and who are your influences?
PD: I would describe my style as vibrant, intricate and unique. I've always lived by the idea of being yourself and not comprising your creative vision. Being individual and developing your own voice is the greatest thing any artist – either emerging or established – can do. I don't look at too many artist's work as I feel it can subconsciously leak into your own style. But, right now, I'm into illustrators such as Mike Harrison, Leigh Flurry, Justin Maller and comic book artists Mikel Janin and Chris Burnham. Where my ideas come from – I'm not exactly sure. They hit me at the most random times, especially going to bed or having a cup of tea. I read an awful lot of comic books, particularly the supernatural and superhero stories: I think they influence my thought processes quite a lot.