Surf Illustration

Client: Shore Shots Irish Surf Film Festival

I was asked to create a surf illustration for Shore Shots Irish Surf Film Festival which took place in the Lighthouse Cinema Dublin. I  had a lot of fun bringing this piece together as it's very much inspired by the local surfers and bodyboarders who lived in the same village as I did, Strandhill, Co. Sligo, Ireland. 


Layout & Scale

The way I approach the layout of a piece like this involves an A4 pad of transparent/layout paper,  a pencil,  scissors, sellotape and an A3 drawing pad. I usually sketch and plan the final piece at A4 size and when it comes to illustrating digitally I increase to A3, if needed. This way I know exactly what level of detail to include and don't lose time illustrating elements that won't be seen. Considering my default zoom is 64000% this is a learned practice! A lot of drawing, positioning and redrawing takes place at this stage. I illustrate each element on tracing paper, cut it out and move them around on the drawn background until I'm happy with the layout. Then I scan all the individual elements into photoshop and finalise the layout. Once that has been done I move over to illustrator and start to draw digitally in vector.


Detail Shots

I love to tell a story with my illustration and really wanted to represent not just the bodyboarders & surfers, but also their other immense talents such as being incredibly talented photographers, videographers, writers, musicians and chefs. I wanted to capture the genuine essence of a tropical surf trip, paying particular attention to drawing the boards the guys used, their fins, the van, everything right up to the brands they love - all wrapped up in a hefty dose of artistic licence.