How not to illustrate digitally : My “failed” transition from traditional to digital – “A Batalha do Arade” – old book project.


My transition from traditional acrylics, watercolor and ink illustration into digital was realy difficult. A nightmare actually. For years I thought I was never going to be able to do it and I was condemned to work traditionally forever.
Many times I´ve tried to adapt to digital art with no sucess whatsoever as I worked in traditional illustration for more than a decade before and perhaps because of that, somehow I had tremendous dificulty in converting my original style to the digital age.
I tried many softwares and failed at all of them. Several times.
One day I became part of a project for an History book and I forced myself to do it entirely in digital, even though I had no clue of what I was doing or how I was going to do it. Fortunately I was working with an author friend of mine and so the whole thing was more like and experiment for me where “failure” was an option.
The result was a mismash of mixed results and the book looked different from page to page,  as if many illustrators had worked on it and failed to some or many degrees. It got published nevertheless, it sold really well and it´s even now out of print which meant some readers out there must have liked it. Even though nowadays I find 99% of those illustrations almost embaracing as it´s still clear that I had no clue about what I was doing at that time and was just trying to paint digitaly out of fear of not being able to complete the task more than anything else.
For me in the end, it was an interesting project to learn how -not to illustrate- in digital. Nevertheless the end result, looking back now, still has some beginners charm in that -so bad , it´s good (?) – category.
You be the judge…

This book became something special in my own personal artistic evolution as it was from this “failed” experience I decided that I needed to really get the grasp with this digital thing even if it was the last thing I was going to do. Understanding –what not to do- in digital painting by forcing myself to illustrate “A Batalha do Arade” book,  set me on the right path to finally learn how to do it properly; taking advantage of all the digital options out there that at the time I had no clue that existed in the digital realm. From this project I started to go online looking for places to learn and came across the fantastic youtube channel from the FZDSCHOOL which actually saved my life and set me on the right path. I totally recommend that channel to all the people who want to learn how to draw and paint in digitial but not only.
As for my failed “A Batalha do Arade” book project, I just thought it was fun to share this here as the blog should also be about my failures and not just about the stuff that I get right. 😉



If you are a potential illustration client, if you are looking for an affordable children book artist , concept illustrator or need a freelance artist to work on a pod project ( I do not descriminate print on demand material for sure; I love it ); do not forget to take a look at my illustration portfolio (Fantasy or Childrens Book art ) and I´m always available to discuss future work.
If you have a dream, no matter what your budget is don´t hesitate to contact me and let´s see what we can do.