GrizzGruff is Born

I’m working on a new project using the same style of design work as when I was designing for Pinky Dinky Doo. This is a photo collage design for a fun client who definitely has a vision. I thought I’d show a bit of my process since this is so different from my typical stuff. Everyone, meet GrizzGruff. GrizzGruff is a misunderstood beast. He’s happy in his own little garden but tends to get pulled into rough and wild situations that are a bit out of hand or hoof. . . . So what’s a gigantic beast with horns, a ring in his nose and hoofs to do? Typically these moments of panic are when GrizzGruff does some of his best landscaping.

To reach a finished product like the one above I sat down with my client at a pretty low key diner in Brooklyn Heights and pulled out my sketchbook. GrizzGruff is just one of my new darlings . . . so we discussed the project in it’s entirety. I started fooling around with a few broad ideas for Grizzgruff. The client was set on horns and hoofs, but wanted him to be intimidating but comical as well. . . I suggested the nose ring. . . the sketching was fast and fun. I knew full well what the outcome of the product was going to be so that allowed me a lot of freedom to do very loose and fast, funny sketches. We fell in love with the one below.

However, while I was set on giving GrizzGruff a Teenage Mutant Ninja T-Shirt, the client wanted him to be built. Whatever. . . guys who wear TMNT shirts can be buff. . .

So after we agreed on a general idea and I was promised creative freedom as long as GrizzGruff wasn’t wearing a shirt and looked pretty much like the sketch above, I came home and began to gather my photographs. I knew I needed long haired dogs to create the textures I was going to need. Typically I use stock photos for this process but I had a few friends who wanted their fluffy pals to be part of the action. They took the three puppy photos below for me. The cow isn’t an acquaintance.
From here I just started to cut in Photoshop, pulling textures and colors from different places, brightening up or dulling different patches as I went along slowly building our lovely, misunderstood buddy from the ground up. You can see that the Shar Pei’s nose is GrizzGruff’s too and that his muscles are all Pomeranian. I really like this gig. From here these designs will be passed off to layout artists and from there they’ll get handed out to animators. I love designing for animation. It’s great to have something designed by me alone, distributed out to 60 animators and put together in an animated cartoon! Then I really get to see everything come to life and I can forget that it took tons of people to pull it together. It’s the best!

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Today has been crap, but now it is beautiful. #gofigure Kisses! 
Nature My husband is the dreamiest. I'm pretty limited in what I can eat these days. We've sidelined dairy, gluten and legumes to help with my auto-immune diseases. There was something particularly tempting while we were in Park City this weekend. It boasted its delicious lime salt loudly. Alas, it wasn't anything I could eat. I lamented and went GF/DF etcF, and then quickly forgot about it. As with most things that cause me fleeting disappointment, Matt remembered. Last night when I got home from the studio, I found this little bottle waiting for me on the counter. He made it himself. #limesalt #love #chefwifelife Dragon swimming in a bathtub. We adopted this dishy-fishy in Mexico during the #happilyeveralvarez wedding week of dreams. There are few worldly possessions that bring me as much joy. 🌈🌈#mood #nofilter End of the rainbow. 
#happyeaster #cake In my own bed tonight, where visions of last week's Yellowstone vignettes dance in my head (mainly because now that I've got wifi back I'm clinging to my iPhone in the pitch dark.) #takemebacktowyoming #witchesbrew Happiness is where everything you can fit into a grocery bag costs $5 #Montana #thriftshop
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