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Allan Macdonald, Sketching
One of the things many students of design ask is how to achieve the fast and
speedy but still neat line work of the pros. This quick tip should help!
David Beasley - Interview
In this short interview with David Beasley, an RCA graduate and currently a
Pininfarina designer, we take a look at what motivates him, as well as what he
thinks it takes to become a successful car designer.
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Miles Waterhouse, SpeedPainting
An interesting technique that produces some very original results. Miles shows
us one of his methods for inventive and loose ideation sketching.
Juan Pablo Bernal, Presentation
For those planning to put their folios together, Juan Pablo Bernals tutorial on
project presentation should prove useful. Learn his tips for how to show and
present your work.
1. Copy several renderings you like and that
inspire you (remember not to try to pass the designs as your own, and always
credit the original artist). Donít worry about not having a unique style Ė
you will inevitably have a unique style no matter how much work you copy .
Make sure youíre copying professional work which covers a wide variety of
design languages to cover a broad range of techniques. Mastering a broad
range of techniques will eventually give a feeling of greater individuality
to your work.
2. Apply the different styles to your own designs. This might not produce
perfect results at first; perseverance is required. Donít just settle for
the one you are able to do from the outset; keep trying to master all the
styles you like; they will all come in useful. Gradually blend the other
styles with the one you are most comfortable with.
3. Try to see your sketches and renderings as the same illustration at
different stages. Having separate sketching styles and rendering styles may
not help your workflow in the long run. Each sketch should be seen as
potentially working towards a rendering and a finished design. If you sketch
highly distorted thumbnails you might feel like youíre starting from scratch
when you come to making a more realistic rendering.
4. Steer away from defending criticism of your work with the reasoning ďbut
thatís my styleĒ. It is possible to have a style that only works in your
eyes. Seek to improve your style beyond reasonable criticism but learn to
differentiate constructive criticism from plain negative remarks, especially
if you are designing cars as it is so competitive.
5. Recognise the shortcomings in your style and tackle them. If you mainly
draw sharp edged, aggressive designs you may not have the tools required to
render soft organic forms. Go back to stages 1 and 2 if this is the case and
copy some work that achieves what you are not currently able to do. You
might realise you have forgotten to blend in some of the styles you
6. Is the visual impact of your flatwork reliant upon one ingredient? If
your render doesnít leap off the page unless it is multicoloured or full of
highlights and lighting effects, try to create the same impact in other ways
such as composition or viewpoint. Then when you add effects later they will
be much more powerful. Maybe your car sketches only look funky because of
huge wheels and no ground clearance; draw forms without wheels; spaceships,
boats; anything that will fill in the blanks.
7. Observe reality and apply it to your work. No matter how stylised your
technique is, the aim is to depict a real life product so keep an eye on how
real surfaces appear and imagine how you would render them. These thoughts
will stay with you when you are working and will translate into your style.
You should also be able to communicate to non-designers so donít forget to
develop that ability. You might even notice something striking on a real car
that most people don't include on their renderings; if you can figure out a
way to do this your work will stand out.
8. Appreciate the value of subtlety. Truly outstanding images will have a
depth of accuracy, subtlety and detail that you might not appreciate at
9. Introduce aspects of artwork that you like from outside design. If you
succeed in producing a convincing rendering with an unusual feel it will
seem more impressive and give an air of greater originality to your design.
10. Keep practicing regularly, every day if you can and whenever you feel
some inspiration. If you work for fun rather than only on defined briefs you
will improve rapidly. Aim to produce something really good every few
sketches and donít worry if each sketch is not a masterpiece because they
all help you improve.
Being open to developing your style can really boost your progress. Relax
and work with confidence knowing that if something isnít working you donít
have to show it to anyone and that you can try many times to get it right.
If you get lost and are unhappy with everything youíre doing go back to
copying professional work until it starts to make sense again. Once you are
producing work comfortably in a certain way start to absorb styles that you
like from othersí work and you will find your designs will become more
sophisticated along with your style.
I was once told by a tutor in passing ďyou have a very exaggerated styleĒ. I
was pretty sure I hadnít been born with an exaggerated style; if anything I
had picked it up. I wasnít happy to be pigeonholed like that so I went back
and copied more realistic work. You will probably find people will be keen
to tell you what your style is so try to make that a difficult thing to do
and you will be developing a style to impress.
TEN TIPS ON HOW TO DEVELOP A STYLE TO IMPRESS
Do you want your work to stand out further from the crowd?
Impressive, eye catching work is what we all want to produce. This article
covers 10 general tips on developing a personal presentation style or even
multiple styles which will evolve and become your signature.
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