Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Our Dad's Watches and Father's Day Memories

A few months ago I received a request from a new business to do a very specific illustration: a boy seated on his dad's lap and hearing the ticking of a watch for the first time.  I suppose I might have turned down a commission to do something that had to match a client's mental image so exactly, but this challenge resonated well with the general direction of my illustration work.  I took the project on, and I'm very happy that I did.

Business owner August Monteleone wrote a very nice blog post about the illustration and the story behind the image he commissioned.  You can read it here: http://dadswatch.blogspot.com/2013/06/fantastic-new-logo-and-other-happenings.html. Augie was a pleasure to work for. I got a strong sense of this being a man who cares deeply about what he does. (I expect that if you have a classic watch in need of restoration, or are interested in purchasing a timepiece as a gift for someone special, Our Dads Watches would serve you extremely well.)

I knew I needed to take special care as I was illustrating a memory for a man with great love for his father. I was surprised at how meaningful the work became for me too. I  used a batch of photos from a Google image search for sketching practice and working out the posing of the figures.  But then I needed to better visual references to nail the details of the watch and the shoes at specific angles.  I used the actual 3-D objects: my own dad's watch and shoes.  I drew the preliminary sketches in pencil, emailing scans to the client for feedback. I then revised the pencil sketches and emailed scans for approval. I finished the inking and coloring of the approved composition in Corel Painter 12.  As I worked, I felt a rush of warm memories of early years with my father and the little life lessons that slipped out in relaxed moments in the living room after he returned from work. 

Last Sunday, Father's Day, months after completing the Our Dads Watches project, my mind drifted back to working on this illustration and the warm feelings it engendered.  

Thank you so much, Augie!


  1. Many thanks to Merry Monteleone for facilitating the connection!

  2. Hi Jean,

    Just wanted to reply here, as well. Fantastic work. I really love it and I love reading about the process you took to create the artwork.

    Thanks so much. You were a real pleasure to work with and the logo is even better than I thought it could be.


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