Fantasy In The Wild
Artist and illustrator James Gurney shows how the outside world can take your fantasy art in unexpected directions
Artist and illustrator James Gurney shows how the outside world can take your fantasy art in some unexpected directions.
How do you follow Watercolor In The Wild and Gouache In The Wild, James Gurney’s previous two titles in this series? Coloured Pencils In The Wild, perhaps? James has other ideas: with Fantasy In The Wild, he both stays true to the series concept of creating art outdoors and greatly expands the territory he could cover in future instalments.
James presents two projects in which he uses his surroundings as both inspiration and reference, adding fantastic elements to otherwise ordinary scenes. As an exercise, it’s a test of your painting skills, because you have to interpret the light and colours you see and apply them to forms that exist only on your canvas. It’s also a great way to generate new ideas you probably wouldn’t have devised otherwise. And, above all, James makes it look like a lot of fun.
The first project sees James adding a flying vehicle to a suburban street. You’ll see how James’s knowledge of perspective enables him to make the floating car looks natural in the scene.
In the second, more expansive, project, an excavator becomes a robotic digger. There are a few changes of tack along the way, and it’s these changes that are the heart of the video. Imagination mixes with observed reality to send James down unexpected paths, and what started as a small-scale study becomes an epic tableau in which a giant robot inadvertently causes chaos in a small town.
The real world has another role to play, too. Being outside gives James the chance to meet people with their own areas of expertise to contribute, lending the scene extra authenticity.
Fantasy In The Wild doesn’t offer the depth of technical detail that you might expect if you’ve seen any of James’s previous videos, but it’s full of both practical guidelines and creative inspiration that could see your daily commute firing up your imagination.
In Fantasy In The Wild, James Gurney shows how real-world observation helps him paint fantasy images you can believe in.
Publisher James Gurney Price $25 (DVD); $15 (download) Web www.jamesgurney.com Everyday excavators provide James with inspiration as he works out how his robot figure should be constructed. Understanding how ambient light affects hue means that James is able to make the car
feel like it belongs in the sky.