Category: Community

Behind the Project: Dreamy Swim-scapes in time for Summer

In this series, we’ll look deeper into some of the projects on Behance.net that were especially admired in our community. Yuku Shimizu is a New York based illustrator. She has won numerous awards for her work (and was named one of Newsweek Japan’s 100 Japanese People the World Respects). Her other projects include illustrations for the New York Times Book Review as well as a collection of commissioned illustrations repurposed to create “slightly demented children’s stories.” We spoke with her about her recent project, Into the Water, a collection of images focusing on swimming and the water.

What was your inspiration for this project?
This is actually a collection of illustrations I have made over the years for various clients.  Since I got an account on Behance, I’ve been thinking about how to present my work in a different context than on a personal website. What I have started doing lately is to put together different projects under a theme. The weather had gotten warmer in New York, and summer was about to start, so I decided to put together a theme of swimming and underwater.
I make a lot of images that fit this theme; I think it’s because I have severe hydrophobia. I never learned how to swim properly, and going into water deeper than my chest scares the hell out of me. But in my drawings, I can go anywhere. These are sort of my fantasy illustrations. Whenever I can use a water theme, I sneak it in!


 

I never learned how to swim properly, and going into water deeper than my chest scares the hell out of me. But in my drawings, I can go anywhere. These are sort of my fantasy illustrations.

 

 


Can you describe your process in creating this project?
Each project is completely different. They are all published work, so some of the themes were very open ended and let me do whatever I wanted, while others were more art directed. Usually the process of illustrating begins with receiving the story to illustrate. Then, I come up with some concepts and create an ink drawing based on an approved idea, and I finally finish the image with coloring on Photoshop.



Some images and projects do come easier than others, but some come harder than they should be, which can be a struggle. Easy or hard, finishing an image or a project gives me a sense of accomplishment like no other. I guess that’s why we’re artists!


Did you expect it to be as popular as it’s been on The Behance Network?
I am always very excited when a project I’ve posted gets featured; I’ve also received so many encouraging comments to continue producing work. This is a very supportive community, and I really appreciate that.

Did you go through many versions and iterations before coming up with these final pieces?
I do a neurotic number of thumbnails. For me, composition is just as important as the images or the concepts themselves. So, I do plan every little bubble in the picture. Sometimes move them around in the coloring stage till it feels right. Some images and projects do come easier than others, but some come harder than they should be, which can be a struggle. Easy or hard, finishing an image or a project gives me a sense of accomplishment like no other. I guess that’s why we’re artists!

Did anything interesting happen as a result of the success of this project?  (fans contacting you, job opportunities, blogs picking it up, etc).
This got picked up by multiple blogs and sharing sites within a day or two of being posted. I did get more phone calls for jobs since I posted, and some are new clients, but I didn’t ask them where they found me.  I am thankful for that there is an audience for my phobia turned into images. It is very humbling. Thank you.

App Update: Creative Portfolio App now in 9 additional Languages!

The Creative Portfolio App is now fully integrated and functional in 9 additional languages: Spanish, French, Russian, German, Polish, Simplified Chinese, Italian, Portugueses, and Japanese.

We’re very excited to finally be able to recognize the global nature of our community with this update. Even more good news: the app automatically detects the language preferences of your iOS, making it even easier to sync your portfolio, access it offline, as well as customize your portfolio’s display.

Behind the Project: A More Playful Packaging

In this series, we’ll look deeper into some of the projects on Behance.net that were especially admired in our community. Steve Simpson is a Dublin, Ireland based illustrator. His projects have ranged from an award –winning projects based on sign language to a children’s book. We spoke with him about his recent project, Illustrated Barcodes, a playful take on a portion of product design most take for granted. 

What was your inspiration for this project?
A few years ago, I was given the chance to design and illustrate a packaging project for an Irish hot sauce company, Mic’s Chilli. I’ve done some graphic design, but I’d primarily been working as an illustrator; to me the 2 disciplines were quite different. So, I decided to treat the design as one big illustration.
By looking at the project from a slightly different angle, I was able to question things I’d previously taken for granted—namely the humble bar code. Did it need to be so ugly? What could I do to make it blend more with the rest of the packaging? I searched the web for answers and rules and was surprised to find very little information on what you could do and what you couldn’t. For the most part it’s been about experimenting and it’s surprising just how far away from the white box, black sticks and digital type face I’ve come.


 

By looking at the project from a slightly different angle, I was able to question things I’d previously taken for granted—namely the humble bar code. Did it need to be so ugly?

 


Can you describe your process in creating this project?
I had collated all the illustrated barcodes from a variety of projects to show as examples to a new client. I hadn’t initially planned on putting them up on Behance but the thought occurred to me that it would be handy to have them all in one place.

Did you expect it to be as popular as it’s been on The Behance Network?
No, not at all. I was quite shocked to see how quickly the appreciations racked up. Shocked, but delighted.

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A Closer Look with Bex Glover

We had the pleasure of interviewing Bex Glover, a graphic designer, artist & illustrator living and working in Bristol, UK. 

How long have you been in design/illustration?
10 years

Do your personal projects differ from your professional work? If yes, how so?
Yes to some degree, my personal work is often more hand rendered / painting based -using markers and spray paint, and it tends to have a more abstract aesthetic. I like to emulate the hand rendered feel in my digital illustrative work too, but the style and subject matter will be dictated by the requirements of the brief. Some can be cleaner cut, simple, and digital in style, others more urban and freestyle. It’s great when you get projects where the client wants to do something based on your personal work –that’s often the more fun, creative stuff.

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Behind the Project: A Transit App For Seasoned Commuters

In this series, we’ll look deeper into some of the projects on Behance.net that were especially admired in our community. Martin Oberhäuser is a Hamburg, Germany based information and interface designer. After working with various large agencies and freelancing, Oberhäuser founded the oberhaeuser.info design studio in 2011.  Oberhäuser’s passion for data visualization is apparent in projects that range from encyclopedia infographics to an app that monitors and tracks online mentions.  We spoke with him about his recent project, nextr, an iPhone app that helps users navigate German public transit by providing intuitive, essential information and directions.

What was your inspiration for this project?
My inspiration was initially personally motivated. I use public transportation services in Germany pretty frequently and I was never satisfied with the available transportation guidance apps. I felt like there was a lot of room for improvement, especially for heavy transit users like myself. Most people I know that use these apps are familiar with the public transportation systems in their cities. They only need quick access to some important use cases, for example “when does the next train depart from the station closest to my home?” So I focused on this user group and provided this easy access combined with the ability to drill deeper for more information if necessary.

Can you describe your process in creating this project?
I decided to play around with some initial ideas and concepts for a more intuitive app. After a while I came up with a structure based around the current user position on a map and easy access to nearby stations.

I approached my iOS developer Marcus Wermuth with this concept and some initial layouts and asked if he’d be interested in and capable of developing the app. Fortunately, he was excited to work with me on making this concept a reality. Of course, we had other running client projects and had to earn some money, so it took us a while to reach a working prototype, and then a fully functional app.
This project continues to be pretty challenging because we are working with real time data and geolocation. The real challenge, however, was to initially achieve the right amount of simplification—asking “what information is really relevant for the user and what is our main target audience?”

Did anything interesting happen as a result of the success of this project?  (fans contacting you, job opportunities, blogs picking it up, etc).

We used Behance as the main tool to advertise the launch of our app and the reactions have been phenomenal. A few hours after we published the project many blogs were writing about it and it soon became the second best selling app on the German App Store. We are also getting many interview requests from blogs and tech magazines. I can’t say exactly how big the impact of Behance was, but it definitely played a big role.

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Behind the Project: Branding a Family-Owned Ski Resort for a Modern Era

In this series, we’ll look deeper into some of the projects on Behance.net that were especially admired in our community. This time, we spoke with Bureau Rabensteiner, an Innsbruck, Austria based graphic design studio. Their designs range from thermo sensitive business cards to branding bakeries. We spoke to them about their recent hotel branding project for the Trofana Alpin.

What was your inspiration for this project?
The Trofana Alpin was the very first hotel in the winter sports resort of Ischgl (a small village in Austria). The hotel is family-owned and builds the foundation of the von der Thannen family history and tradition—a fact that turned this project into something personal and very close to our hearts.

Can you describe your process in creating this project?
The client emphasized their family history and how everything started out with a humble Bed & Breakfast. We were also provided with a number of historical items related to the von der Thannen family history, like an old photo archive. After rethinking the project we came up with a branding concept that referred to the origins of their family business. We redesigned the look and feel of the brand with a focus on the von der Thannen family’s exemplary ability to balance tradition with modern convenience and understated luxury.

Did anything interesting happen as a result of the success of this project? (fans contacting you, job opportunities, blogs picking it up, etc).
Yes, many people have contacted us, for very different reasons, because of our projects on Behance. Some have questions concerning type, papers, photography etc., while some very nice ones simply get in touch to tell us how much they like our work. Ultimately though, it turned out that Behance is a really good platform for receiving serious requests.

We were also lucky to get an immediate feature on Design made in Germany an important German design blog. Also Page Online, one of Germany’s graphic design magazines, featured us within an article. We are really thankful that a lot of other bloggers helped us by sharing our work in recent years. That was more than we could have hoped for.

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Links roundup from Behance Portfolio Review events around the world

Another amazing Portfolio Review Week has come to an end, but the stories of the events all around the world are still being told on blogs and in the press. We’ve rounded up a few favorites below!

Sketchbook Magazine: Behance Portfolio Reviews at the Al Turki Business Park Tower in Khobar

“Through the hustle and bustle of the event that took place on the 1st floor of the Al Turki Business Park tower, visitors ooh-ed and aah-ed over the spectacular work of the participants. Art in all it’s mediums, including digital art, sketch art, animation, comic book art, and photography, gathered in the same spot.”

Illustrator’s Ireland: Portfolio Review at The Copper House Gallery in Dublin

“The crowd on the night was a brilliant mix of people coming from design, photography and illustration. The opportunity to speak and hear about how people develop their work is always fascinating and it opens communication between those working in different creative fields.”

Design Assembly: Yoobee School of Design in Auckland’s Portfolio Review

“With over 40 attendees there was mingling, networking and drinks, followed by a short welcome, then 60 minutes of portfolio reviews held in a friendly, discussion format with industry professionals.”


dnaIndia: Pune, India Portfolio Review at Lokusdesign

“Our aim is to promote fresh talent, giving them a chance to work on some of the top brands in the industry. With global design firms entering the Indian markets, it is important that the Indian designers are equipped to face the growing competition.”

The Davaoist: 5 Reasons Why You Should Join Behance Portfolio Reviews in Davao

“#4: You and your artworks will finally get the recognition (or exposure) that they deserve.”

Portfolio Review Week is in Full Swing

We’re right in the middle of Behance Portfolio Review Week, and are seeing an outpouring of buzz all over the internet about these community-planned events that are currently going on around the globe. Join in on the fun by browsing what people are saying, and enjoy some highlights below:

Instagram Feed
Pinterest Highlights
Flickr Photosets
Twitter Feed #BehanceReviews 

Ottawa, Canada

 


Budapest, Hungary


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