Friday, September 27, 2013

Creating Art for Licensing - Make it Easier on Yourself

The Skinny if you don't want to read more: Paint and scan the art in steps. Nuff said :-)

These are acrylic paint on cotton canvas panel. I only used one palette knife. The small square ones are 6" x 6" panel and the larger one with the two gold pears is 9"x 12" panel. These are part of an 'apples and pears' collection I am working on.

I paint small - so I can scan them it at a HIGH resolution. Normally If I were painting these to sell in a gallery or some place similar, I would block in the darks and work up to the light colors. I would have painted the background first over the stems and then paint the stems on top of the background, cuz that is easy.

BUT, for art licensing you are probably going to want just the pear/apple alone with no background. It is much easier to remove a white background in photoshop, THEN go back and paint in a background.

One more thought: If a manufacturer wants a different background - this may make that easier to accomplish. Especially if what I have shown them has the pear/apple on a separate layer already in photoshop (or illustrator).

I would LOVE! it if you would share how you handle art for licensing. If you don't want that to be public - shoot me an email Thanks so much for reading and sharing :-D

You might also like:
Palette Knife Pumpkins      Painting: Breaking the Rules      Changing Medium and Style

Make my day and follow this blog :-D - links in the right-hand column of each page.


  1. As someone who is just learning all there is to learn about this business, I find this tip so valuable. I do believe I have heard/read about this concept elsewhere too, but don't remember where. I will say that it is definitely a challenge to wrap my head around creating this way. It's so not normal for me. It really takes planning.

  2. Hey Terri! It is kind of weird to think in photoshop (or illustrator) layers. I have been graphic designer for a long time - to it is easier for me to blend art with it. Thank you so much for your comment :-D

  3. Yes! This is similar to what I do also - although I don't paint very small and I often have to piece together an image after scanning it in sections. But I do paint individual elements and then separate them from their backgrounds to allow maximum flexibility in composition of the final image! Thanks Annie!

  4. Sarah: You are talented to scan in sections! Thanks for the blog love :-D

  5. And she's patient too!.....I do it both ways and probably spend way, way too much time cleaning, cloning and color burning!

  6. Thanks for this great blog Annie, I love sharing and reading other artists processes. I create my images in adobe illustrator as vector art. I paint like I would with a brush for all the fine details and it takes me quite a long time...on average about 40 to 60 hours to create one image. Especially my latest two works; Castaway In Paradise and Castaway Island Home (just newly released).

    But images becoming more and more detailed. I am conscious that I want to keep the artistic natural feel to the work so thats why I use the blob brush mostly. The blob brush allows me to paint my image. I don't use the shape tools apart from a rectangle which I always alter anyway. At the moment I am enjoying using multiple layers to create one element such as a piece of fruit. I begin with the mid tone colour, then add my shadow edge. Then I add tiny textures, usually dots and dashes like stippling, then I pull it all together with layers of several thin glazes over the top of that. I make constant creative decisions and the outline is very important. Sometimes I go for a soft focus outline, other times I feel the single fine line is needed and then still other times I will choose a line with variation or none at all. Its fun and I find that the more I work in illustrator the more I love it! The challenge is to keep it looking hand made which is what I do my best to achieve.

  7. Cool Cindy! Thanks so much for sharing your process for everyone to read :-)


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